Thursday, 20 July 2017

Sydney and good news from WOW!

 This week I received the wonderful news that two of my three entries for the World of WearableArt® have been accepted and will appear in the spectacular show in late September! Hurrah!!! It was particularly lovely to receive the news whilst enjoying a drink with my beloved at Darling Harbour in Sydney, after a day exploring the Powerhouse Museum. Quite how I managed to miss the exhibitions of wedding dresses and student fashion, I don't know - this kind of failure was pretty typical of the entire weekend! Still, I got to see these lovely costumes of 'The Million Dollar Mermaid, Annette Kellerman'.
Matt and the birthday boy, Trevor.
Having travelled to Sydney for a special birthday party (see above, and photo of drinking wine from magnificent chalices with fabulous people) we stayed at Rushcutters Bay. 

 A wee walk away was King's Cross, where I got to see the El Alamein fountain so often featured in the recent series Love Child - squeeee!!


 This was our view from the Fountain Cafe - it felt very European! Awesome service, too.

Of course, no trip is complete without Sean Sheep, but this is how we found him after our room had been made up ......


...the saddest pose I've ever returned to. We suspect it was a dude making the bed......harsh, man.
Meanwhile, back in the lounge studio, this is happening - I'm making a half scale mannequin to model the creations I can make on my half scale dress form. An interesting journey....
Last weekend I got to catch up with the fabulous Beatrice Jackson, who had a very special birthday earlier this year, which, due to circumstances here, I was unable to attend at the time. However, we enjoyed a private celebration, along with her daughter Jane, and I presented Bea with a felted wrap I had made, featuring shibori dyed silk pieces she had gifted me.These were purple and pink (it's a passion we share!) and I teamed them with bright oranges,reds, and pinks, in honour of her birthday trip on 'The Ghan' to Darwin.
video
Here is the video of our unselected piece for the UV section, themed 'Float, Fly, Flow'- yes, Matt was credited as a co-designer (and sssshhhh - also modelled!!)

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Anthozoa - Wearable Art Mandurah 2017

Late last year when I realised that I would be unable to fulfill my duties as a judge for Wearable Arts Mandurah, I decided to maintain my involvement by entering. Already submersed in WOW creations, I was thrilled to find in the studio a corset and skirt already made in a rich burgundy upholstery fabric (an unused version of Fimbria Figura) and a bag of vibrant bomaki shibori tubes to start things off. A late night in the lounge with my favourite fuel, bubbles, and I came up with a work to reflect the theme Oceania.
Taking over the studio
Ahhh, memories of the Christmas period

Embellishment around the holes cut out of the skirt

Oh, more 'O's!!!
I used the shibori to create anemone-like shapes on the bodice and skirt-tail, and used still-tied-up and un-tied kumo shibori pieces to create spiky texture.  I used free-motion embroidery to create circles on a tulle base including all sorts of interesting scraps of materials - silk, laces, hairy bits - before applying them to the skirt, then cutting out the holes. As the piece grew, purple became an important colour - already present in small and light-hued pieces, it was the addition of the deep purple organza which really made the colours pop!
Shibori made by steaming with marbles tied in organza.
It was a labour of love, with many late nights spent stitching on the lounge room floor, and calloused and bleeding finger tips. It's very much a 'dress', but I was limited in what I could design due to having to ship to Perth, with a suitcase really the only viable option.It also just grew from materials in the studio - I don't think I bought a thing for it! Even the headpiece - I needed a base, but it was the Christmas Holidays, so found a small basket lying around the house and used that!
The finished garment modeled by the fabulous Tenielle Lewis and shot by the magnificent Chantal Brennan


Saturday, 10 June 2017

Stradbroke Cup Fashions on the Field 2017

 Today I volunteered to assist with the Fashions on the Field for the Stradbroke Cup at Doomben. What an amazing atmosphere it was! Placed just inside the gate, our station was perfect for people watching. There were many impressive ensembles reflecting the theme of 'Black and White, with a touch of Red', as well as a few highly questionable ones.... The event began with the men, and there was quite a good effort on their part! Sadly, none of my favourites, below, placed in the competition.

There were a couple of these groovy stilt creatures strolling around!
 Fashion favourite Milano Imai looked stunning with her 'skirt over a skirt' outfit - see how she does it here

This hat was a standout, and it was no surprise to see Tanya Lazarou win Runner Up!

I was very pleased to see this hat worn by Brittney Tamou win Best Hat - it was spectacular! Made by her mother, Kerry Mcglone, of Hats in Fashion
A bevy of black, white, and red beauties
Love, love loved this leather and luscious lace number!
The Winners of the day - model Lindsay Ridings won with her all red ensemble - absolutely stunning, but not quite sure that it was a fitting reflection of the theme.






Friday, 9 June 2017

Photo Shoot for Felt Magazine

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In January I posted about a felt garment shoot in a burnt out forest in a heatwave.... this month, Felt magazine came out this month with the featured article, and I can now share all the photos, taken by the fantabulous Chantal Brennan.


Thanks again to Liam, Ciera, Aimee, Meika, Lizzy, Lowis and the amazing Chantal, Jenelle, and Matt. Thanks also to editor of Felt Magazine, Martien Van Zuilen, for including my work in this issue.








Chiiina Part 5

Our first sleep in Beijing on the firmest mattress yet is wonderful - I WANT one!! This morning we head to Tiananmen Square, where we are warned of undercover police, so we should watch what we say. It's quite stunning that our guide pretty much says "We were told of the death of one female student, and if you have any alternate knowledge, please don't tell us. (Wikipedia mentions, to my horror, hundreds, if not thousands, of fatalities!!) We are initially underwhelmed with the square itself, until we realise that we are simply standing on one wing of it. Mao's Mausoleum building occupies the centre, so it is infinitely bigger than we first imagine.  We travel underground to the Forbidden City, which goes on, and on, and on, and on.......
Tiananmen Square

A photoshoot with the locals


Andy and the flag!
Forbidden City


The Dan and Dianne Dynasty
We have another very Westernised lunch at a local hotel restaurant, although a school group also descends upon some tables like a flock of starlings,  chanting a prayer before they are released upon their meal!! We spend an enjoyable afternoon with a small selection of the tour group, drinking random finds from the shop across the road!
We have a wine in the bar, with the accompanying plate of delicious peanuts,  before Summer meets us and takes us around the corner to dinner, which is very nice with just 5 of us, and full of chilli!! (The majority of the tour is heading out to see a Kung Fu performance - we just wanted some down time!)
Carts on the street
We leave early the next morning for our 2 hour drive to The Great Wall of China, which turn out to be the unexpected highlight for many of us!  I fortify myself with a pork dumpling and red bean Danish - my word, they know how to make proper pastry here!! We are one of the first tour buses there, which gives us unimpeded access to the Wall. It was a very steep climb, and by Tower 4/6, I was feeling quite lightheaded and had run out of water, so headed back down, meeting Matt at Tower 1 - good work!!
Here I go!
Mr Studebaker contemplates the task
Lunch at the Jade Factory restaurant
 Feeling quite done in, I snooze on Matt's shoulder on the way to the Jade Factory. I'm not really interested in the quite plain and very expensive jewellery, but treat it more like a gallery, perusing all the intricate carving displayed around the perimeter. Unfortunately, one particular sales lady keeps following me and offering me jewellery.... We lunch at the restaurant there, with the highlight for me being the red bean paste spring rolls. After more sleeps on the bus, we arrive at the Summer Palace, which is teeming with people. I need a little convincing to keep moving, but make it down the path to see the marble boat, after a few sit-downs along the way....
Summer Palace Lake

Marble boat
 
Back on the bus to travel 40 minutes to see the acrobatic show - Matt is keen to keep sleeping, but I have a suspicion this is going to be quite good, and am not disappointed! In particular, the ball of death, where apparently 3 motorbikes circling is the norm, and this troupe manages to fit in 6!!! Astonishing! After a quick refresh, we walk around to our final dinner, and climb 3 sets of stairs (noooooooo!) to a dining room in the restaurant we were in the night before. Many dishes are served, but I await the Peking Duck - oh, Om nom NOM!!! I have about 6 pancakes worth - hey, when am I ever going to eat Peking Duck in Beijing again?!!

After a farewell to all our companions in the lobby we head to bed, to prepare for our 4:30am departure. Summer meets us and puts us into our car to the airport with a bag of provisions for each of us. At midnight we are back in our house, wondering if it was all just an elaborate dream....