Peni Moala
29, Arrowtown
Retail Assistant

With a background in womenswear, particularly in eveningwear and streetwear, Peni (pronounced ‘Ben-i’) is hoping to wow the judges with his usage of alternative fabrics.

Not one to shy away from a challenge, he’s looking forward to seeing what he can create with a limited budget and time! A self-confessed diva when he doesn’t get his own way, team challenges will be a struggle as Peni’s philosophy is: if it’s not his way, then there is no way!

Why did you apply for Project Runway?

I applied because I wanted to use this platform to get my name out in the fashion industry and share my story and win!

How would you describe your personal style and your design aesthetic?

My design aesthetic is inspired by my culture, background, lineage and who I am as a person. I love to be able to tell a story through my design, and quite often I will call upon my Pacific culture. I like to take the traditional and fuse it with a modern twist.

How would your friends and family describe you?

My family would describe me as being loud, funny, sometimes overdramatic, loving, caring, protective and a bit of a diva!

What made you want to become a designer?

As a little boy, I remember watching something fashion related on television. I can’t quite remember what it was, but I can recall this beautiful person walking down an aisle in a black fitted corset and a big princess skirt. I absolutely loved the dress, but I was more hooked on how the audience were mesmerised by the garment. I had no clue why this was, but I was determined to figure it out!

What does fashion mean to you?

Fashion is art to me, especially being able to share my story through my talent. It makes me feel confident.