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 Eleven

Show: Meet the young people from Fairfield High School! We’re so *pleased* at The Social Outfit to be working with this fantastic group in our fashion workshop program …

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Pictured here are nine of the twelve young people who are working with us for the next eight weeks (and our fabulous fashion teacher, Emma, of course!). Almost all of these young people attend the Intensive English Centre (IEC) at Fairfield High School, learning both English literacy skills and the Australian education system. As a person whose learnt languages before, I’m *super* impressed with their willingness to jump on in and start interacting with Emma and me. And let me tell you, these young people have some great ideas about fashion and their own style. I’m really looking forward to seeing what we develop together.

Below is Emma when she and I were collecting supplies from Greenfield for our sewing workshops last week. It’s a wonderful opportunity for me to work with Emma and learn from her expertise from WEFTshop.

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And please check out below my new leggings that I bought at The Social Studio when I was there last week. These leggings showcase The Social Studio’s new digital printing capabilities, and the artwork is designed by one of their students. I love them! This is what I wore for our first Fairfield High School program day. Particularly *great* was when one young person asked if my neck got sore from wearing such heavy jewellery! I explained to him I’ve had years of *dedicated training* in large accessory wearing, so I’m doing just fine!

P1040467Tell: Handmade earrings and necklace, shrug from thrift store in the UK, Uniqlo skivvy, handmade dress found in op shop, The Social Studio leggings, Fluevog boots.

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And here’s me on Friday, at some city meetings and working hard on The Social Outfit‘s longer-term plans. *Claps of joy* for wearing shorts in winter! xo

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Tell: Wa-Nyika earrings, The Social Studio digital print silk scarf, skivvy from op shop, ‘Jody’ jacket from op shop, handmade necklace, Katies shorts from op shop, Jonathan Aston tights, retail tights underneath, Lacoste sample boots, Ken Done tote. Brooches: toucan from Canberra, parrot from op shop, flamingo from Melbourne.

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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 Eighty-Two

Show:

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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.

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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-One

Share: The Social Outfit just got ourselves an ‘Authority to Fundraise’. Hooray! And why might you be interested? Because within the coming weeks the final 20 or so donated pieces of Ken Done from What Ken Be Done will be up for auction! And all for the benefit of The Social Outfit… Let me explain a little more first…

So, you’re a charity (i.e. got your DGR status and tax concession). That means now you can *fundraise like a fiend*, yeah? Well, NO!

One more form, people! In NSW, if you want to fundraise (i.e. ethically ask people for money via campaigns and request for donations… *NOT* hassling, mind you), you need an ‘Authority to Fundraise‘. You fill in forms from the NSW Office of Liquor, Gaming and Racing, and show how you are legitimately doing charitable work. Then a little bit later, they let you know it’s OK, and you can begin fundraising. The Social Outfit got our confirmation this week. Yee-haw!

So if you, or anyone you know, wants some (more) *GOLD* pieces from my Ken Done fashion archive, you’ll soon have your chance. All the money raised (other than the auction fee) will go straight to The Social Outfit! And we’re going to use the money for our pilot program (supported by the City of Sydney). As soon as Kit gets the auctions live, we’ll let you know. You get Ken Done, and WE all get to support creative, great programs celebrating people from our refugee communities in Sydney. I like it!

So, in short: things here are MIGHTY busy, I can tell you…

Also, Kit got her hair cut. It’s *fun*, it’s got *verve*, and we have the photos to show, of course… xo

Show:

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Tell: Wa-Nyika earrings, Ken Done scarf handmade by Susan, The Social Studio silk dress, Ken Done leggings, retail socks, Fluevog shoes.

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Sixty-One

Show:

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Tell: Wa-Nyika earrings, Anthea Crawford 1980s jacket from op shop, Saba belt, Kmart skirt, Black Milk leggings, Fluevog shoes, vintage bag gifted.

Share: This was me on Monday. And, oh how I love me some 1980s Anthea Crawford jackets… it’s those short sleeves that makes them so-SO-80s-appealing!

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Fifty-Four

Show/Share: Last night we returned to Sydney, and it proved a *spectacular* way to finish up 2012, and herald in 2013… Because we came home to see that the ATO has granted The Social Outfit ‘Deductible Gift Recipient’ status and the ‘Charity Tax Concessions’. Yep, we’re now a bona fide Public Benevolent Institution! *Great news* that is another super important step on our way to securing our future in Sydney. It made the fireworks last night feel a little extra special…

… And I couldn’t have done all the ATO paperwork and procedure without the help of The Social Studio’s Grace McQuilten. She’s supported me every step of the way, and her advice and counsel is *priceless*. A huge and heartfelt thanks to her xo xo

In other fashion-related news, can you believe I found this custom, hand-made dress in an op shop in Perth? $24.99 and my size, it’s like it was made for me! Once I spotted it I just kept clawing at it, praying it would fit. Hooray, it does! Ruffles! *You Rock* Perth op-shops; so much second-hand gold to be found…

Another highlight from Perth was going on an evening boat cruise on the Mandurah Canals to look at people’s Christmas lights. It *so* appealed to my love of kitsch, glitter and frou-frou!

Yet another super-fantastic photo by the Hawaiian First Officer, who really is the BEST live-in-photographer ever! <3 …Thanks for all your support and expertise in 2012 … <3

The Hawaiian First Officer and I also spent New Year’s Eve with friends; including dearest Bec who is sporting my Ken Done shirt she bought in the auctions when supporting What Ken Be Done. Love!

So here’s to a hopeful and fulfilling 2013 for us all! xo

Tell: Hat from ‘Cat Protection Society’ op shop in Enmore, Wa-Nyika earrings, Tatty Devine necklace, handmade dress from Perth op shop, vintage belt from London, Uniqlo leggings, Camper sandals.

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Thirty-One

Show: Well, what a ripper of a day; and much of the *fun* came from wearing my high-waisted 1980s yellow *Mom-jeans* because…

Tell: Wa-Nyika earrings, necklace from op shop, top from Prahan near Chapel Street (a million years ago), singlet from op shop, jeans from op shop in Perth, Fluevog shoes.

Share: This afternoon Chloe and I met with Ross Longmuir who owns and runs, Planet in Surry Hills. Ross is a completely delightful and ethically-minded man, and he’s graciously offered to host a small party for The Social Outfit at his *beautiful* store and showroom in November. So Chloe, Ross and I met up to talk logistics and planning. I’m getting excited (and yes, nervous!) about the thought of a runway show displaying the amazing clothes of The Social Studio: all to highlight what we too could do here in Sydney with our talented young people from refugee communities …

My rather crappy Instagram-ming doesn’t do Planet nearly enough justice here… the space is really, really great!

A big thanks to you Ross: your generosity and support means the world to us! xo

And, as *luck* would have it, before meeting Ross, Chloe and I were having a coffee when who should sit right down next to me but Ronni Khan of OzHarvest: a social entrepreneur of considerable standing. Of course, I instantly knew who it was, but imagine my surprise when it was my yellow jeans and accessories that caught her eye: OzHarvest have just produced their first cookbook, and what do you know, yellow is a defining feature of it. So *thanks* to my 1980s jeans, Ronni and I got to have a chat and she was very supportive of The Social Studio and what we are aiming to do here in Sydney, so we’ll stay in touch. How *good* is that?! xo

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Twenty-Eight

Show:

Tell: Glasses from op shop, Ken Done scarf as headband, Wa-Nyika earrings, handmade necklaces, and long coloured necklace from North Shore op shop, The Social Studio singlet, Easton Pearson silk dress from op shop (*hello* lucky find!!), Fluevog boots.

Share: This morning I’ll be working hard on The Social Outfit paperwork-trail, and then Chloe and I are off to meetings with potential supporters in the afternoon…

… I’m not entirely sure how this outfit came together with such *gusto* and tinges of both Carmen Miranda and 1980s Cindy Lauper this a.m., but I am prepared to just go with the flow and embrace the fun of it: It is a Friday after all! xo

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Twelve

Show/Tell/Share: Down Under, Down South…

Yesterday Day 6/10, 12 September: Glasses from op shop, earrings from H&M Japan, Tatty Devine necklace, Ken Done ‘Down Under’ vintage t-shirt from eBay, Kmart skivvy, Fletcher Jones tartan skirt, Simon de Winter socks, Fluevog shoes.

And some pink eyebrows just because…

As for today, well OF COURSE, I *had* to visit my favourite store in Melbourne… Check out my grin at simply being in The Social Studio … Plus of course, I picked up some *great* and stylish bargains. Can’t wait to show you! xo xo

Today, Day 7/10, 13 September: Glasses from op shop, Wa-Nyika earrings, pashmina scarf from Italy, Uniqlo skivvy, red skirt from Savers op shop Frankston, vintage belt from UK, Ken Done leggings, Happy SocksFluevog shoes from Sole Devotion.

And thanks Lily for posing with me…

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Ten

Show/Tell/Share: Hello regional Warburton; thank you for your warm village welcome, and especially your Vinnie’s op shop… (photos of *finds* for another day)…

Then next, on our road trip today, we next headed to Bruno’s Art & Sculptures Garden in Marysville. After the February 2009 ‘Black Saturday’ bushfires so much of Marysville was destroyed; so being able to see something like Bruno (and his supporters) rebuild his artist garden, studio and home is amazing. A wee little owl sculpture took my fancy in the garden:

Day 3/10, 9 September: Ken Done glasses, Wa-Nyika earrings, vintage necklace from Berlin market, Kmart skivvy, Fletcher Jones tartan skirt, socks borrowed from my Step-Dad (I needed green!), Fluevog shoes.

Day 2/10, 8 September: Glasses from op shop, Wa-Nyika earrings, vintage necklace from op shop, Ken Done vintage t-shirt from eBay (with original tags!), Kmart skivvy, Levis jeans, Happy Socks, Fluevog shoes.

ShowTellShare One Hundred and Three

Show/Share: I’m not sure what to say other then I *really* do still love Ken Done fashion and colour. The evidence is clear, I think… I hope… xo

Tell: Ken Done glasses, Wa-Nyika earrings, scarf gifted by my sister-in-law, Dangerfield skivvy dress (bought when I was all of 19, I think), Ken Done cardigan, belt from op shop, Ken Done skirt handmade, Caledonia tights, Happy Socks, Fluevog boots.