Saturday 27 May 2023

Progress on Garden Wedding Dress

 A week ago I started creating the dress that is my entry for the Australian Wearable Art Festival.

I want the surface to be very textured so that motifs look raised and floating above the background.

For inspiration I consulted one of my favourite textile art refernce books - The Art of Manipulating Fabric, by Colette Wolff. This book is brilliant but for anyone seeking it out it may be hard to find as the original edition was printed in 1996. As I have been doing textile art for nearing 40 years I have accumulated quite a substantial reference library and note many books in the collection have been out of print for decades.

At this very early stage the dress looks quite soft and limpid but if you refer back to the illustration of  my concept garment in the blog post previous to this you can see how the hemline at completion will be a rigid square. That will be quite easily achieved when the surface is finished by making channels along the hem that will have stiff plastic threaded into them. If necessary to achieve a very structured look I could also make vertical channels along the seams to make the dress stand out from the waist down.

The pink background fabric was a nylon curtain. Its there as backing to support all the decorative elements as they get stitched on.

I'm really happy with progress so far but anticipate working on for another couple of weeks yet as I want the surface to be really dense with embellishment.

Monday 22 May 2023

Australian Wearable Art Festival 2023

 I'm proud to announce having been selected as one of 40 finalists for the Australian Wearable Art Festival 2023. This awesome event will be held on the Gold Coast, Queensland over 2 days on August 11/12th, 2023.

Above is the concept picture I submitted when I applied to enter. The picture was a collage created by gluing on pictures of other surfaces from garments I've made in the past. Mostly they were taken from my 2019 coat called "Coat for a Bohemian Princess".

At the time of entering my vision for AWAF I was uncertain what to name the concept garment, but after much brain racking I've settled on "Wedding Gown for a Woman to Marry Her Garden".

In the last week I finished the headdress and have now started making the dress. Though the dress looks simple in the illustration, it will be quite an epic production. The most challenging bit to construct will be the hem as it is square and rigid. The garment will be effectively hang suspended from the models shoulders. Rather than making the dress from conventional cloth pieces I've built a frame and have started filling in the spaces which comprise the 4 sides.

I'm somewhat restricted in what I can show as part of my committment to help the Festival succeed is not to reveal the entire finished garment until the night of the parade on August 11th.

So here is one picture only of the headdress to serve as a little tantaliser.