ShowTellShare Two Hundred and Eighteen

Show/Share: Fairfield High School! Making fashion with great young people! It’s one of those times when things are *happily hectic*, and I can’t wait to share with you pictures as we’ve finished up our eight-week project. First up, some photos from last Thursday as the students showcased their fabulous final outfits; working with black, white and green:

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We worked with the students to make their own dresses and pants during this project. Emma, The Social Outfit‘s fashion teacher was able to work with each student to add their own design features to their sewn pieces…

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We’ve also made a short film of the project, which I hope to share very soon:

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Thanks also to the support of The Australasian College Broadway, we had students studying make-up volunteer their time and help customise looks for our own students:

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(I love how you can also see Emma in the background of this photo making last adjustments to our costumes; she really is such a supportive and creative teacher!)

So *thank you* to Amy Morgan and Roberto Napolitano for overseeing our make-up, and to all the make-up volunteers, Anne Nguyen, Bianca Sands, Nabila El-Issa, Leisha McCarthey, Romina Ruiz, Rachel Grose at The Australasian College Broadway:

IMG_2103And, of course, SUPER-THANKS to our teacher Emma, and our fashion intern Steph, for all their help in design and sewing for the students over this whole 8 weeks. I loved being able to work with them, especially being involved in a collaborative creative process. And, its fabulous that they made such an effort to wear black, white and green on our last day… including accessories and nail polish too!

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My outfit on the wonderful day, last Thursday, showing my own colour support:

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Tell: Lafont glasses, Wa-Nyika earrings, handmade earrings, necklace from Hawaii, pendant handmade and gifted by Jessica, vintage handmade shirt from op shop, retail green top, The Social Studio silk dress, Black Milk leggings, Fluevog boots.

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Then below are some images from the previous week (Week 7, 5th September). With going to Melbourne for the Colour Chameleon project, I didn’t get a chance to share them until now. Here, the last stages of hand-sewing and learning these techniques to finish off the dresses:

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I also really wanted to show these pictures because we had Nicole Barakat and Hussein come and speak with students about their own artistic process. As you might remember Nicole was also involved with our pop up pilot project in The Rocks. Hussein and Nicole especially focussed on their own personal stories and how they celebrate their own cultural heritage in their art work. The students told us how much they enjoyed this talk:

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Thanks so much for sharing your own stories, Nicole and Hussein!

IMG_1937And me that day, wearing the eco-dyed scarf Nicole taught us how to make in our first creative workshops …

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Tell: Handmade earrings, Kmart skivvy, The Social Outfit eco-dyed scarf, ‘Modern Style’ dress from NIDA / WEFT-shop fundraiser, retail tights and Fluevog boots.

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ShowTellShare Two Hundred and Fifteen

Show/Share: Welcome to our newest volunteer, Mathura Sinnappurajar! Here’s her own *lovely* introduction:

Hi everyone! Just to fill you in on a little about me. I have just moved to Sydney to start my postgraduate study at Macquarie University. I was raised in Canberra, and spent a few years living in Papua New Guinea with my family. I tried out a few different courses at university before deciding that I wanted to do a Bachelor of Arts degree. I chose a particular combination of majors as I am interested in supporting the humanitarian and human rights issues related to refugees. I have been lucky enough to travel overseas and teach English in South Africa and Turkey, and have also had the opportunity to assist a teacher at a school in Sri Lanka. I am excited to work with Jackie and the wonderful team at The Social Outfit!

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We’re so very pleased to have Mathura join our growing team of supporters. And already she’s joining in and helping me with funding applications and planning for upcoming events.

Now, for something a bit different, last week’s outfits… backwards. Here’s me on Sunday, on a warm Sydney afternoon, heading out to meet up with friends. This vintage dress was just one of my *gold* finds at the NIDA hosted, costume market stall, as part of a WEFT-shop fundraiser, held on Monday last week. Raising money for a fabulous fashion social enterprise, and old costumes: I was in my element!

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Tell: Handmade earrings and necklace, brooch from op shop, gifted shrug, vintage dress from NIDA / WEFT-shop fundraiser, Jenny Kee vintage bag found in an op shop in Penrith, vintage bracelets from second hand store, Fluevog boots.

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This was Thursday, sporting vintage Hawaiian and denim for our fifth Fairfield High School fashion workshop.

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Tell: gifted earrings, Uniqlo skivvy from Japan, Hawaiian shirt (Magnum’s infamous junglebird design, to be precise) gifted by the Hawaiian First Officer, The Social Studio singlet, Dragstar denim skirt, Spin Dance petticoat, boots from op shop.

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And last but not least, back to last Tuesday, when I met with Rachael, Sascha and Alyssa from Vodafone, and they helped me develop some communications frameworks for The Social Outfit. They were super supportive of our work! And then I met with Mathura for our first working day together. So you see, if you start at the beginning, or the end, my time is always about working together with *good* people, all in the hope of moving The Social Outfit forwards! xo

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Tell: The Social Studio silk scarf, kitten brooch from Japan, cardigan from op shop, Uniqlo skivvy from Japan, vintage Sportscraft tartan wool skirt from NIDA / WEFT-shop fundraiser, retail tights and socks, Fluevog shoes.

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ShowTellShare Two Hundred and Six

Show/Share: Phew, things are busy! Sorry for the delay in posting this week, but it’s been one of those times when I’ve either been in meetings, or head-down on paperwork. It all really started from last Saturday when The Social Outfit Committee of Management met for a planning meeting. We had a great working day, agreeing as a group on a working plan for the next 12 months (coinciding with my funded year as part of the Vodafone Foundation ‘World of Difference’ program). It’s *action-stations* for us all!

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Below is me on Thursday when I met with our *great* supporter, Shannon Carruth from ING Direct, who is helping us with financial planning. Also, do you happen to notice my new The Social Studio digital print silk scarf? Designed by students accessing our Collingwood sister studio, young people use their creative skills to also learn about computer literacy. Genius. I love this pattern and style so much!

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Tell: Handmade earrings, Uniqlo skivvy from Japan, Miss Shop dress from op shop, The Social Studio ‘Eva’ silk digital print scarf, vintage beads, skirt from op shop, stockings from Japan, retail socks and Fluevog shoes.

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I also wanted to share with you what has become *quite a thing* of late: to drop into The Social Studio when visiting Melbourne, get your picture taken, and then send it to me! I love it! And *naturally* people always have such supportive and great things to say about The Social Studio. Many people comment on it being creative and inspiring; encouraging us to keep working on our Sydney version. Here’s Alexis from a local supporter cafe, Scrambled, showing how happy she is to see our sister studio in person. She bought a summer dress and says she’ll share the photo soon…

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And of course, Vice-Chair David Hardie is always happy to pose and show his support! Apparently that blue/grey t-shirt looked great on him and he went home a happy customer too. xo

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Then on Thursday night I got to do another favourite thing of mine which is to talk about comics. I’m a proud comics nerd; studying it as a part of my university degree. I was part of a panel event, so naturally wanted to wear some ‘comix’ for the night. It was great fun!

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Tell: Ken Done glasses, handmade earrings, Tatty Devine necklace, ‘Romeo Pour Juliette’ 1980s jacket from op shop, skivvy from op shop, Badsville ‘vintage horror comix’ skirt as top, Kmart skirt, Badsville ‘vintage horror comix’ leggings, Fluevog boots.

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And then off on a date last night to celebrate a busy, and great working week….

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Tell: Wa-Nyika earrings, handmade necklaces, ‘Claire Pain Paris‘ brooch, vintage Hawaiian dress from US second-hand store, recycled stockings as gloves, Estillo belt, retail tights and socks, Fluevog sandals, vintage Linda Jackson bag.

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And that pretty much gets you up to speed; until of course I have more news and fun to share about next week. Until then, hope you’re all grand! xo

ShowTellShare one Hundred and Eighty-Six

Share: Meet Nina Maya, The Social Outfit‘s very own *new* board member!

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We’re all really excited to have Nina involved; check out how amazing she is:

Nina Maya Skrzynski is one of Australia’s most outstanding designers renowned for creating collections with an emphasis on quality, silhouette and finishing. Since the launch of her Nina Maya label in 2006, she has developed a strong following from industry, celebrity and consumers alike. Completing a design degree, majoring in textiles at the College of Fine Arts Sydney, Nina has always held a strong penchant for fashion. Following this, she set off for London for an internship at a leading textile firm, before relocating to Italy where she worked for a luxury fashion house. Nina was honoured by an invitation to design her own range for the company, which was produced shortly after. Following her work abroad, Nina returned to Australia to establish her own business and further her self-titled label. Created with a style and design philosophy against the trend of disposable fashion, her focus on sustainability and a desire to create investment pieces have served as a solid foundation for the label’s success. Nina’s desire to push the envelope in design has seen her develop an artisan-like approach to her label. 

In July 2009, the Nina Maya label was selected by MYER to be included in their stable of designer collections and is now stocked nationally. The brand has developed strong working relationships with a select group of celebrities, most notably creating one-off red carpet designs for Jennifer Hawkins, Rebecca Twigley and Delta Goodrem. The resulting recognition of this saw the introduction of the Nina Maya Bespoke service in which customers have the opportunity to have demi-couture designs created personally by Nina for a specific occasion or event. 

Nina Maya has now extended the 
application of her skills to launch Nina Maya Interiors. After returning from London to Sydney, Nina Maya Interiors was launched in early 2012. Since then, Nina Maya has completed residential and commercial interiors design projects in Sydney and Beijing, China. 

In terms of philanthropic work, Nina is a Trustee of the Sky Foundation, a founding member of the ‘10 x 10 Project’ (aimed at engendering a culture of philanthropy and giving within the young professional and creative communities), and a member of the New Gen initiative at Philanthropy Australia.

Welcome Nina!

Show: And here’s some photos from last Friday, as a bunch of us were preparing and working hard at The Rocks Pop-Up spaces, in what will soon be The Social Outfit‘s new home whilst we run our pilot project

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There is a tonne of work to do: Eeeeek! But rest assured I’m making a real effort to make sure our creative workshops, exhibition space and ‘The Social Studio‘ pop-up store are *super interesting* for you to come and visit! For more details as we develop, check out here

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Tell: Earrings handmade, ‘Tokyo Kamen‘ brooch from Japan, ‘Promenade’ shirt from op shop, The Social Studio singlet, TS14+ dress, Black Milk leggings, Fluevog boots. All rings from Italy.

And this is today…

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Tell: Wa-Nyika earrings, scarf from op shop, handmade necklace, dress from secondhand store, vintage leather belt from secondhand store, Spin Dance petticoat, retail tights and socks, Fluevog sandals. Vintage Australiana bag from secondhand store.
Check out  also the First Hawaiian Officer’s *lovely* vintage shirt (below); we’re wearing matching retro-greens… And a BIG *thanks always* to the FHO for such great photos!
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This mini-comic says it all, really …
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ShowTellShare One Hundred and Seventy-Seven

Share: I feel a lot like I’m chasing my tail at the moment; round and round with many things to get done on my ever-growing ‘To-Do’ list… which is why it sometimes pays to throw on some vintage Hawaiiana on a Sunday, and just try to relax…

Show:

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And I wasn’t alone in this fashion-choice of the day, with the First Hawaiian Officer sporting a *fabulous* reverse-print Hawaiian shirt. Can you believe we found this *gem* in an op shop in Oahu?! Reverse-print Hawaiian shirts became a style around the 1970s (I think), as a more ‘subdued’ alternative to the bold Hawaiian print; often worn as ‘business wear’**. So in other words, the print is just done by wearing the pattern inside out, and the fabric is is still usually pretty bold and fab! I love them… This a ‘subdued’ shirt? I don’t think so!

** Naturally, my lessons in Hawaiiana all come directly from the ‘FHO’, so I’m paraphrasing…

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Tell: Ken Done sunglasses, handmade earrings (re-crafted from necklace in op shop), ‘Royal Creations’ vintage Hawaiian dress found in op-shpp, Saba leather belt, retail sandals. Tote from the Honolulu Academy of Arts.

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Oh, and please don’t forget there’s both Ken Done *gold* and Hawaiian *vintage fun* still up for grabs on our eBay auction page. All profits go directly to The Social Outfit! The support so far has been SPECTACULAR! xo

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Seventy

Share: ‘Twas a coloured-eyebrow kind of weekend clearly…

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Show: Sunday involved a Positive Psychology lecture at the Sydney Opera House, and a festive outfit to match my upbeat mood…

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Tell: Ken Done 1980s glasses from eBay, vintage beaded necklace from Santa Barbara, vintage handmade dress from op shop (with some adjustments by me), Jonathan Aston tights, Fluevog boots.

And Saturday was all about more Hawaiiana…

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Tell: Cambodian silk scarf as hairpiece gifted by my Mum, vintage Hawaiian top gifted by the Hawaiian First Officer, Katies skirt from op shop, retail tights, Happy Socks, vintage boots from op shop.

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Sixty-Five

Weekend

… And here’s Kit and me from last Thursday, working busily on our The Social Outfit work… more meetings, more planning… you know, just good old-fashioned hard work! xo

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My earrings are actually vintage ‘Donna Karen’ which is fun, but not NEARLY as fun as thinking they stand for ‘Ken Done’! …

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ShowTellShare One Hundred and Forty-Six

Show/Share: My reaction to urban surrounds as summer breaks in Sydney…

Feeling the need for a breeze and some greenery….

Now that’s better!

Tell: Tatty Devine necklace, Hilo Hattie Hawaiian shirt borrowed from the Hawaiian First Officer, “Jaxon Dee’ vintage cotton dress from Prahran, Spin Dance petticoat, Happy Socks, Fluevog shoes, Honolulu Academy of Arts bag. Fan from Barcelona.

And here I am from Thursday last week. Wearing The Social Studio and pink eyebrows as I head off to a meeting about The Social Outfit

Tell: Handmade earrings, Tatty Devine necklace, The Social Studio dress gifted by Jo, TS14 dress underneath, Tatty Devine belt, ‘Beechers Brook’ pants from op shop, Camper sandals.

Loving my pants – found years ago in an op shop – that look mostly black, until you see the electric blue satin *shining* from underneath. Classy! xo

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Thirty-Nine

Show/Share: On Saturday morning I left the house at about 7:45 a.m. and returned at about 12 midnight. Needing a *long-haul* outfit, I went for pattern-clash and relaxed…

During the day, I was part of an Action Learning Set; working with a small group of people trying to get our social projects off the ground and to get them working effectively. It helped having a nice view while working hard…

Tell: Handmade jacket from op shop, handmade necklace (from owl found in Hawaii), Dragstar dress, Caledonia tights, retail socks, Fluevog boots, Jenny Kee bag, Viva La Wombat scarf from op shop.

Show/Share Two: … And then today, we had a Sunday lunch birthday. This outfit literally just made itself as I started mixing blue and orange and white, and then repeating the colours over and over again, and going for my *love* of over-matching.

The Hawaiian First Officer and I aren’t known very well for our outfit matching, and so when the *genius* moment of the HFO’s use of blue, orange and white occurred here too, I was MOST excited. Plus, a Hawaiian shirt, no less! (And you, dear reader, well you know the HFO: not quite so keen on the multiple selfies!)

A *good* weekend. I hope for you too xo

Tell: Ken Done for Canteen scarf from op shop, necklace from op shop, vintage Snoopy brooch from op shop in Canberra, secondhand cardigan from Retospec’d, vintage cardigan clips from op shop, handmade dress from Bankstown op shop, Spin Dance petticoat, retail stockings, Happy Socks, Fluevog sandals, ‘Vintage Penguin’ bag from UK. Earrings from op shop and ‘Diamonds Ain’t a Girl’s Best Friend’ cloud ring from London, UK.

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Twenty-Six

Show: If any day feels like a *finance day* it’s a Monday; so I’m off to M.H. Carnegie & Co. to get cracking on our financial modelling options… How I love expert advice!

Tell: Ken Done glasses, Ken Done necklace, aqua beaded necklace from op shop, leotard from Berlin, The Social Studio top, Anthea Crawford skirt from op shop, Sportsgirl stockings gifted by my Mum, Fluevog boots.

Share: And, more generally, a short reflection list entitled, ‘Things I’m learning about myself by trying to maintain a WordPress Blog’:

  1. I have persistence; which I personally think comes from years of honing my skills in searching for *gold* in op-shops! So yesterday I  installed a better subscription service: it’s that *Follow* button on the bottom right hand side (for those already not subscribed), but I had to have a very *serious fight* with my computer for many hours. So boring! By 11pm I finally sorted it, with teeth gritted and a bullish attitude (i.e. “Apple-Option-Esc… I said APPLE-OPTION-ESCAPE!!!”). Phew!
  2. Apparently I don’t Google-search like anyone else in the world does; because I hardly ever find useful links immediately (which sucks when trying to solve problems). This is in stark contrast to The First Hawaiian Officer who literally finds anything needed online in seconds. Pffffh.
  3. I *LOVE* the support and joy of our growing online community here: across the blog, Facebook page and Twitter. Yesterday some of you let me know when the issues were cropping up (and then even still took the time to say nice things to me). So an ONGOING thanks too for your patience, and for coming back here and keeping me company. You rock!

I also had my brother in town again last night, and it was *lovely* getting to see him. How he makes me smile! xo

Tell: Ken Done sunglasses, handmade earrings, gifted scarf from my sister-in-law, vintage Hawaiian top from op shop, Katies shirt from op shop, Levis jeans from US, Linda Jackson bag.

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Twenty

Show/Share: This is what I look like usually when I’m doing paperwork, and thinking, and trying to strategise about The Social Outfit. And basically, that’s what I’ve been doing for most of this weekend. Serious, I know. But at least my clothing brings some colour to it… xo

Tell: Ken Done head scarf, scarf from Hawaii, ‘Wendy’ 1980s top from op shop, Uniqlo leggings, Birkenstocks.

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Six

Show/Share: How many photos do you think are taken down at Circular Quay, Sydney each and every day? Here’s just two of them in the one shot…

Happy Hawaiian Spring Sunday. xo

Tell: Handmade earrings and necklace, Ralph Lauren Hawaiiana jacket (borrowed from the First Hawaiian Officer), Ken Done vintage shirt, Saba leather belt, Dragstar denim skirt, Happy Socks, Fluevog shoes, Ken Done tote from op shop.

ShowTellShare One-Hundred and One

Show/Share: Sorry, you’ll have to forgive me for not looking at you, but I’m completely distracted by this *fantastic* new Australian novel…

What you’re seeing is ‘The Burial’, by Courtney Collins: a dear and spectacular friend of ours. This is her first novel published by Allen & Unwin, and I’m so very proud of her! I can’t wait to start reading this story in earnest…

Now, an odd segway. Sometimes, I play word-association games with fashion. So, The Burial is about a female bushranger. I think, ‘Bushranger. What fashion? Bushranger? Umm, I know, a jumpsuit**.’ Thus, here’s me wearing a jumpsuit to show-off the book…

And if you’re thinking, who the hell wears a jumpsuit in the Australian bush?! … Then I probably should remind you of this photo of me in the early What Ken Be Done days, whilst in a Noosa rainforest:

** I should also add that many of my fashion word-association games end with the answer, ‘Jumpsuit’. I really do love jumpsuits!

So congratulations to Courtney, and happy reading and creative days to you all! xo xo

Tell: Kmart skivvy, vintage S.L. Fashions jumpsuit from Hawaii, Jonathan Aston tights, other retail tights, Fluevog boots.

Oh, and some double-tights fun as well: