Wool show better by design
One woman’s bold idea and the determination to pursue it brought two award-winning fashion designs to this year’s Newdegate Machinery Field Days.
Local farmer Fanny MacDonald, pictured, and friend Juliet Butcher have co-ordinated the popular Dyson Jones MerinoSnug Fashion Parade for the past 10 years, organising models to showcase designs by boutiques and labels exhibiting at Field Days.
This year, there were two plastic models donning two very special woollen designs — the 2017 Wool 4 School winner, and a dress from the six-piece collection which took out the 2015-16 International Woolmark Prize, which is co-ordinated by Australian Wool Innovation.
Ms MacDonald said she had approached AWI to encourage the company to send two designs from Sydney, which it did.
“It was amazing to see what a high school student and a pair of high-end designers would do with wool,” she said. “It is always important for wool to be an integral part of that fashion parade, to highlight how beautiful wool can be.”
A black-and-white tailored suit with a big bow headpiece, the 2017 Wool 4 School winner was designed by then-Year 10 student Alice Wang, from St George’s School in NSW, and selected from a pool of 1000.
Alice’s piece included a raised collar, shoulder padding, a cropped tuxedo, white short sleeved blouse, and loosely ruffled sleeves.
Budding fashion designers from Years 7 to 12 were invited to design an onstage outfit for their favourite musician for the annual award — in Alice’s case Australian female singer Sia — using free samples of both knitted and woven woollen fabric in the classroom.
The second dress featured a geometric pattern created in luxurious and innovative lace fabric.
English design duo Catherine Teatum and Rob Jones, whose label is called Teatum Jones, won $100,000, mentor support and global exposure after taking the womenswear category of the 2015-16 International Woolmark Prize.
The pair used fine Australian Merino wool to create kaleidoscopic patterns on the ankle-length dress shown off at field days on September 4-5.
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