virginia in raglan

We sit down with búl designer Virginia Martin as she explains her inspiration behind the latest collection. Read below how colour palettes, fabrics, patterns and destinations travelled muse spring summer nineteen ‘Raglan’.


Tell us why you chose Raglan, New Zealand as búl’s new season destination muse?

Raglan is a thriving surf town situated on the west coast of New Zealand with world-famous left-hand running waves across the bays. I had heard a lot about the place and being an avid surfer that’s forever intrigued to explore new destinations, I knew it was a place I had to visit. I hired a campervan last year and drove from Auckland to Raglan, which is in New Zealand’s upper North Island. I loved travelling by campervan, it allowed me to openly explore and stay at stops that showcased the most spectacular views, not to mention being close by to the beach at all times for an early morning surf. The town itself had a quaint ‘Byron Bay’ vibe, where the locals were extremely lovely and helpful and although relaxed, had a buzzing coastal energy that thrived throughout the town.

With a place that welcomes you with open arms and days are greeted with early morning surfs, waterfall wanderings and an organic way of living, I knew spring summer 19 was going to muse this beloved coastal town.

What aspect of Raglan did you specifically pull from and how does it reflect throughout the collection?

Raglan paved way for vast inspirational musings across the collection. Many aspects of a place inspire me to create a collection, from the delicate flora and native wildlife to more abstract musings like a piece of furniture or the way the sunlight hits the local architecture.

In Raglan I looked specifically towards coastal colour palettes of the surrounding bays, where ocean sage and deep navy came to life each morning as I was out catching a wave. The untamed landscapes of the Waikato region, where Raglan sits geographically featured towering trees and rolling hillsides that further inspired earthen tones of rust, mulberry and forest green. A vibrant orange takes me back to the incredible sunsets viewed from my campervan and a bright red that likens the Pohutukawa tree, a native New Zealand flora that blooms in vibrancy along the unruly coastlines.

This seasons feature prints play upon various meadow florals that I saw as I drove up the North Island in to Raglan and also found on my explorations around the town. The prints bring upon a nostalgic feel, which further expresses the mood I felt as I explored this beautiful coastal place.

Footwear this season is bold and daring, much like the waves and a particular surf spot where you have to paddle out over rocks to get to. All styles have comfort in mind to inspire traversing beach-side get aways in tonal pairings that partner the collection.

Natural fibres are forever a búl staple and with Raglan being apart of New Zealand, such a majestic un-touched land, they are brought further to the forefront of the collection. Cotton, linen, tencel and silk all feature strongly alongside delicate knitwear in refined, softened blends. Small seashell buttons are also seen which were inspired by a hand selected collection I gathered on my walks along the bays, it’s all in the details.

Tell us one of your favourite things to do in Raglan? 

Apart from the surfing, which I would highly suggest if you are exploring Raglan, I loved discovering the many nature walks around the area including Bridal Veil Falls. This waterfall is an awe-inspiring 55m high plunge fall located along the Pakoka River and is a great place for stunning vistas and ample photo opportunities.

Which pieces of the collection are your favoured choices for the warmer weather?

I like the versatility that the ‘Ma dress’ brings, you can wrap it multiple ways and the navy-check fabric is light enough to wear as an outerwear piece too. The fun floral prints will be also a great summer addition in my wardrobe where I need that extra pop of colour and something a bit playful, and I can’t go past the linens, Melbourne Summers spent in linen is a must.

Lastly, what are you looking forward to this summer? 

The long summer nights, where you can leave the office and still enjoy the balmy evenings outdoors and also weekend trips up to my beach house which is always a great weekend get-away at a place where you can relax your mind body and soul and be at one with nature.

explore raglan

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