Meet The Menders: Kohna Zari Ko

Meet The Menders: Kohna Zari Ko

A free Pop Up Mending event by Kohna Zari Ko was held at the Centre on Saturday 16 July and Sunday 17 July 2022.

We chatted with Dr Fahima Saied, a registered counsellor with the New Zealand Association of Counsellors (NZAC) about Kohna Zari Ko and the Pop Up Mending event.

Q: Tell us about the meaning behind Kohna Zari Ko.

Kohna Zari Ko literally translates to turning old to gold and we have used this and applied it to mending projects, utilising our sewing skills to upcycle, mend or tailor to give much loved items new life.

Q: Tell us about the people who are part of Kohna Zari Ko.

Kohna Zari Ko was formed as a local community sewing group to empower migrant women based in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, to come together, strengthen their skills and have more confidence in the community. The women come from Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan and all have a passion for using their sewing skills to upcycle, mend and alter items.

Q: What is the purpose and vision?

Kohna Zari Ko is about creating opportunities for the group to use their craft and sewing skills while connecting with people. We offer mending, tailoring and alteration services.  We also like to work with customers to transform fabric or items that aren’t being used anymore into something new. We see our services as a way to think more about sustainability and as an anecdote to fast fashion that is the second biggest pollutant in the world!


Q: How does the mending pop up work? What pieces will you accept?

People can bring along a simple repair and we will work through the best way to mend it for free on the day – this could be a button that’s fallen off, a dropped hem or a small hole. We have a talented group who love working through the best way to fix things.


Q: Tell us about how you came to be at Ormiston Town Centre?

We have been fortunate to be able to partner with Objectspace and Arts Out East in this project who have connected us to the Centre to make this happen.


Q: How has Arts Out East and Objectspace helped Kohna Zari Ko?

We have been working with Arts Out East and Objectspace for over a year now.  They have helped us with establishing our website and getting Kohna Zari Ko off the ground.  Both organisations champion the work of creative people.

To find out more about Kohna Zari Ko, Arts Out East and Objectspace, visit these links:

Kohna Zari Ko

Arts Out East