PHOTOGRAPHER Vesha Ziolkowski and Jakob Carter pose on the red carpet. Photos supplied

IT wasn’t a fire sale, but the launch of an Opotiki-based fashion line that raised at least $2000 for mental health during a red-carpet event held in Auckland on Saturday.

Opotiki fashion designer Jakob Carter said a fire alarm sounded just as the fashion show at Rydges Hotel was about to start.

“There were lots of people, but the fire alarm went off and we had to evacuate,” he said.

“While we waited outside, some people left.”

Mr Carter said once the alarm was cleared and people could go back inside, the fashion parade took place with “everybody loving the collection”.

“I got great feedback, including from the celebrities who were there,” he said.

“Erin Simpson asked me to dress her for the TV awards next week.”

Although the final count had not yet been done, the event has now raised at least $2000 for the Mental Health Foundation.

Eastern Bay woman and former top model Danielle Hayes made a special appearance on the show.

Meanwhile, Mr Carter said he was working on his website, which would have interest-free credit functionality for buying his clothing.

“I have signed up with Laybuy and Afterpay,” he said.

Working from his home, Mr Carter said his garments cost between $170 and $800 and that he could replicate them.

“This is my first large-scale season,” he said

“I have produced two or three garments of each size and I can also custom make clothes for clients.”

After creating a design, Mr Carter sends the work to a pattern cutter in Hamilton.

“She cuts it in fabric and we make one sample,” Mr Carter said.

If needed, Mr Carter revises the work and the pattern goes to production.

“The garments are sown by two factories in Auckland.”

Mr Carter has been working on his self-titled fashion line for two years, having started his brand by making hand-crafted candles that were sold on-line and in selected stores.

sven.carlsson@thebeacon.co.nz