A saleswoman from small-town New Zealand got a shock when film star Kate Winslet dropped in to stock up on a few items.

The Oscar-winning English actor called in to the clothing store Pagani in Masterton, spending more than $NZ300 ($A245) on clothes, jewellery and sunglasses on Saturday.

Saleswoman India Kawana's first reaction was "no way, it can't be - this is Masterton".

"She didn't even try the sunglasses on," she told Fairfax.

Winslet and her husband Ned Rocknroll managed to stay relatively anonymous as they were shopping with film director Peter Jackson, who lives nearby, and his daughter Katie.

"I think Peter and his bare feet were noticed a bit more," photographer Phil Brazier said.

Winslet, an Oscar winner in 2008 for The Reader, had her first starring role in Jackson's Heavenly Creatures back in 1994.

 

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