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Beyond the Bale : December 2015
22 OFF FARM Maddison O’Connell who won this year’s St George TAFE NSW Tailoring Event sponsored by AWI. To highlight the versatility and benefits of Merino wool to the UK’s leading textile students, AWI has once again partnered with the UK’s foremost textile graduate design prize – Texprint – and sponsored a special award. Texprint provides a vital bridge between the best of British textile design talent and the commercial world. The Woolmark Company Texprint Award encourages the most exceptional British-trained textile design graduates to use Merino wool in an innovative manner. Royal College of Art graduate Jessica Leclere was announced as the winner of the 2015 Award during the Première Vision Designs trade show in Paris. Making the presentations was legendary designer and long-time head of the Missoni brand, Rosita Missoni. Those eligible for this Texprint award must incorporate a minimum of 60 per cent Merino wool into their textiles, and demonstrate a good understanding of its qualities and potential application in fabric. Miss Leclere was recognised for her collection of knitted designs in Merino wool inspired by the optical illusions that come from opposing positive and negative spaces, and by the textual and optical effects created by dip-dying and hand-manipulated linking techniques. “Winning The Woolmark Company prize means that I will be able to investigate manufacturing and it will be invaluable in sourcing wonderful yarn,” said Miss Leclere after her win. “I am thrilled to win this, given the stiff competition amongst this year’s Texprint designers.” AWI continues to encourage the use of Merino wool by emerging textile designers, through sponsoring an award at the UK’s leading textile graduate design prize – Texprint. FOSTERING TEXTILE EDUCATION WITH TEXPRINT Fashion design student Maddison O’Connell has won this year’s St George TAFE NSW Tailoring Event. The 20-year-old is currently studying applied fashion design and technology and was rewarded for her stunning Merino wool tailored jacket and pant suit. Sponsored by AWI, the prize includes $1,000 worth of Australian Merino wool fabric and the opportunity to be mentored by an AWI representative to help her develop her final collection, which was on show during a fashion exhibition held at TAFE Ultimo’s gallery space, The Muse. Miss O’Connell said the entire process of developing her collection taught her a lot about working with wool and she was amazed with the results she could achieve with wool, particularly felt. “Wool is amazing to work with,” Miss O’Connell said. “Being able to mould it around the shoulders, it was really good to work with. It sat really nicely as well; it just fitted the body really well. “Originally I was looking at wet felting because I knew that you could do that with wool, but being able to do needle felting helped to exaggerate all the layers in the jacket and it was really good to use.” AWI has sponsored the St George TAFE NSW Tailoring Event in Sydney to help encourage the use of Merino wool by fashion students. LOCAL TAILORING TALENT ON SHOW EDUCATION HIGHLIGHTS Judges Franco Fabrello (head designer at Italian textile manufacturer Marzotto) and Kit Neale (UK designer) interview the winner of The Woolmark Company Texprint Award, Jessica Leclere.
In the Shops - March 2016