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!


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!


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.


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…


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


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!


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.


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


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.


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 Two Hundred and Two

Show/Share: So the *exciting* news I have today is that we have another fashion project in progress … Following on from our pilot pop-up project down at The Rocks (and funded by the City of Sydney Council), this time The Social Outfit will be working with young people from refugee communities who are attending Fairfield High School. This project is funded by ING Direct, and we’ll kick it off in Term 3, late July. We’ll be on site at the school one half-day per week for over 8 weeks learning together fashion and design skills with about 15 students.


Yesterday morning I headed out to south-west Sydney to meet again with some of the fantastic leadership team at Fairfield High School, including the Principal Bob Mulas and the head teacher of the Intensive English Centre, Sonia Durney. (We learnt all about Fairfield High School‘s fabulous work from our long term supporter, Meredith Turnbull, and Board Member Sarah Chisholm and intern Kit Shutt have all helped in our developing relationship). Turns out we’re all super keen to work together, and here’s just a couple of *great* things to know about Fairfield High School:

  • There are over 20 nationalities represented at the school.
  • As well as a being a high school with over 1000 students, this school also has a community hub on site, particularly for parents from newly arrived and refugee communities.
  • The community hub includes a cafe and garden which grows produce from many of the student and family’s countries of origin.
  • The Fairfield High School Parents’ Café provides opportunities for newly arrived refugee parents to engage with the Australian education system and gain more information about available services, community organisations and pathways to training and employment.
  • This school has one of the highest representation of students from refugee communities anywhere in Australia, and they are dedicated to providing opportunities for students attending their school, including those students who undertake the ‘Work Skills’ equivalent to the HSC.

The Social Outfit’s project with Fairfield High School is our chance to keep working directly with young people from refugee backgrounds in fashion-related work. We can work on site at the school, and hopefully celebrate the skills of the young people and their cultural traditions, as well as developing their skills in clothing production and design.

Very soon I’ll be putting a call-out for a fashion-trained educator to help me with this project, so if you know anyone who is qualified, and wants to get paid for *doing good in a fashion*, please help me spread the word!

And here’s today’s outfit as I travelled around from Fairfield, to Sydney city, and beyond…


Tell: Tatty Devine earrings, handmande necklace, vintage apple brooch from op shop, Uniqlo skivvy from Japan, Laura Ashley dress from Bondi op shop, vintage leather belt, retail tights and socks, Fluevog boots. Detail below also shows The Social Studio felt jacket and brooch from Japan.


ShowTellShare one Hundred and Eighty-Six

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


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


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


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…

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!
This mini-comic says it all, really …

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Eighty-Two



Tell: Green earrings gifted by Kirsten from China, Wa-Nyika pink earrings, handmade orange beaded necklace, vintage beaded necklace from Santa Barbara, The Social Studio silk dress, Estilio leather belt, 1980s ‘Maggie T‘ dress from second-hand store, retail tights and Fluevog boots.


Share: Today I met with some lovely staff within the Sydney Institute, TAFE NSW, to progress our working relationship. An important part of The Social Studio education model is the provision of TAFE-accredited, nationally-recognised training in the areas of fashion, retail and hospitality. At The Social Outfit in Sydney, we want to make sure we can also provide such integral support as well; so we’re all working hard to make it happen. Plus, I’m just a big believer in vocational and ‘on the job’ training as a key part of education and skills development here in Australia generally. So *hooray* TAFE! And in the meantime, we’ll keep progressing on our formal arrangements…

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Seventy

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


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



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…



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


… 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

P1030747STS 165_2

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


STS 165

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Fifty-Nine

Show/Share: A Sydney day of 44+ degrees makes dressing with any kind of *verve* quite difficult. This is what I was able to manage…


Tell: The Social Studio silk scarf as headband, The Social Studio silk dress gifted by Jo, singlet found in op shop, vintage beaded necklace from secondhand store in Santa Barbara, Uniqlo leggings from Japan, retail shoes gifted.


Yesterday afternoon I met with Juneth (L) and Hawanatu (R). Hawanatu was one of our *spectacular* models for The Social Outfit’s November runway event. Juneth is Hawanatu’s friend, and she works as a model. She’s also looking to raise money through a charity project to support women who have obstetric fistula in the Congo. So we talked about organising charity events, and fundraising strategies, etc. It was lovely to meet up, and I look forward to hearing more about Juneth’s project as it develops.


And below is Kit on Thursday this week. As we all keep working on The Social Outfit‘s short-and long-term development strategies, I’d say face number 3 was the most common over the day! As I have said to both Chloe and Kit, it’s so great to have them on board helping us in practical ways. Plus, I love Kit’s 90s floral shirt (note studded collar)… and, she’s sporting a Tatty Devine necklace; so RAD.


Kit 2

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Fifty-Eight

P1030677Tell: Handmade beaded necklace, anchor earrings and necklace from Santa Barbara, ‘Embassy’ vintage dress from secondhand store (also worn here), belt from op shop, retail socks, Fluevog boots.

Share: This is what I wore yesterday. Comfy, with my own touch of *fun*…

What proved most interesting about my day although was that I received two emails from a friend and colleague with possible contacts for The Social Outfit. That is, people I know offering to help me move forward with potential leads, in an effort to raise the money we need to start. I can’t begin to tell you how much this raises my spirits when it happens. Sometimes, when this venture isn’t guaranteed, or all sorted in every practical sense (although we are totally getting there!), I feel quite vulnerable sharing my day-to-day life and hopes. The negative part of my brain says, ‘Who would be interested at all? Just stop trying. This is taking too long…’ Then someone in our growing community makes contact  to say ‘hello’, offer an insight, or share an idea. It makes all the difference.

Which is all to say, it’s *lovely* having YOU as a part of this work, in whatever way you’re involved. Thanks for helping to keep me to my purpose, and to keep me learning and curious. Whatever happens, this experience is real. And if I can ever return the favour, just let me know… xo

STS 159

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Fifty

Our 150th post; what a *lovely* occasion to have ShowTellShare’s first guest blog:

Show: Hi, my name is Kit and I’m The Social Outfit’s new intern!

Share: A little about me… I’m from England and moved here in November of this year. I’ve had a few different career paths so far, starting with college studying Beauty, then at University studying Fine Art. I also worked in fashion retail for about 6 years and even had a go working in an office. But nothing seemed to fulfil me… so I took up the opportunity to move to Australia in search of new experiences and a change of lifestyle, which I have certainly found this far. And, with a passion for fashion, colour and always up for doing good, who better to work with than Jackie and The Social Outfit?!

I was fortunate enough to arrive in Sydney just in time to help out with The Social Outfit’s very first fashion show event. I was completely bowled over with how special The Social Outfit is and couldn’t wait to get stuck in and help.

I can’t wait to keep working closely with Jackie and other supporters next year in what is sure to be a very exiting 2013 …

Tell: Topshop dress, vintage *sparkly* top from UK, belt from second hand store UK, Vivienne Westwood shoes gifted by my wonderful mother, clock ring gifted by a friend (to keep me punctual!).

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Forty-Nine

Show/Share: Today, I briefly found myself in this *great place* on the eve of an important Australian speech, twenty years ago now…

And then we headed out to my university end of year celebration.

A lovely afternoon with colleagues and friends, and what I called the *wolf-dog*. She’s huge, but camera-shy, so the day involved me chasing her around to try and catch the evidence of her MASSIVE ears and head…

Good times.

And just a *touch* of some orange lipstick on the eyebrows, because, you know… xo

Tell: Handmade necklace, Retrospec’d dress, vintage leather belt from secondhand store, Spin Dance petticoat, retail stockings and socks, Fluevog sandals, vintage knitting bag from op shop.

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 Thirteen


WELCOME TO… my last three relaxing days in Melbourne…

NEXT STOP: the final update on my 10-Day-Melbourne-fashion-challenge comic…

Friday Day 8/10, 14 September: Ken Done glasses, earrings from Japan, Country Road vintage denim jacket from op shop, Kmart skivvy, NEW Ken Shaw dress from op shop, leather belt from op shop, Sportsgirl stockings gifted by my Mum, Fluevog shoes, Linda Jackson bag.

I think this photo below shows up my purple eyebrows particularly *well* – check those dark arches in the large Ken Done frames !! And this new 1980s ‘Ken Shaw, Melbourne’ dress is a find from Frankston, and clearly *gold*. The photos aren’t doing it quite the justice I think possible, so you’re likely to see it again soon…

Then the weekend was spent wandering around and spending more time with family. Check out this great sign spotted by The First Hawaiian Officer (and no, we did not partake in any such ‘instant’ beverages)…

Saturday Day 9/10, 15 September: Pashmina scarf from Italy, American Apparel shirt (borrowed from The First Hawaiian Officer), skivvy from Kmart, Levis jeans, Birkenstock sandals.

Then home to Sydney.

Sunday Day 10/10, 16 September: Pashmina scarf from Italy, Ralph Lauren cashmere skivvy from op shop, vintage denim dress from op shop, Saba belt, Fluevog shoes.

Ah, a *good time*. Now the comic recap WITH UPDATE:

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Seven

Show: Presenting Knitted Gold…

Tell: Knitted gold chain handmade by me, child’s kimono worn as jacket, dress bought from Berlin second hand market, Fluevog sandals.

Share: Today I’m off to a training session entitled, ‘How to Better Manage Your Fashion Business Operations’, run by the Council of Textile and Fashion Industries of Australia Limited (also known as the Australia Fashion Council, or TIFA). I’m looking forward to some new insights for setting up The Social Outfit here in Sydney.

As for my necklace, I’m always a bit pleased when I imagine myself crafting-up something, and in the end, I actually complete it, and it looks like I wanted it to. I just love my *BLING* knitted, don’t you?!! xo