Migrant women's clothing label looking to grow its market

A sewing course to upskill refugee and migrant women in Auckland has turned into a fully-fledged clothing label which is looking to grow the business bigger. 

Cotton Seed is the product of migrant women from all over the world who are designing and creating clothes in Auckland.

The label is part of the New Zealand Ethnic Women's Trust.

It has been teaching refugee and migrant women to sew since 2007, but created the clothing label two years ago. 

"These women come from the war, come from the refuges. And now they become Kiwi New Zealand and they are wanting to do something," said Fadumo Ahmed, New Zealand Ethnic Women's Trust chairwoman.

While it began as a way to help women get jobs and learn English, it has evolved into far more. 

"It is part of the community. It is part of coming together. It is part of learning about New Zealand system," Ms Ahmed said. 

Twelve women are taken into the six-month-long course each year. 

Then they can choose further upskilling, paid work at Cotton Seed or take their newfound expertise into the job market.

They've already created unique pieces for individuals as well as bulk commercial orders, but they want to provide for all Kiwi women.

"We want to make it supply to everyone in New Zealand because women have got so much talent," said Prema Neal, a New Zealand Ethnic Women's Trust board member. 

Cotton Seed is the product of women from all across the world, and is designed and created by migrant workers in Auckland. Source: 1 NEWS

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