mission 65


Images of the Mission 65 refashioning workshop 2011. You can read more about it here.

I ran my first ever refashioning workshop for the Prahran Mission in 2002, as part of an arts programme they were running at the time, called Second Story. Using garments from their op-shop, I worked with a small group of people who were experiencing some degree of mental illness – showing them how to unpick and refashion their selected piece into a textile sculpture, garment or piece of wearable art. This project was a total revelation to me, showing me a context where playing with frocks could offer social, emotional and therapeutic benefit to all of us involved – and it paved the way for the mental health arts project I was later funded to run in Qu├ębec, Canada.

So you can imagine my eagerness last year when the third year styling students at the Whitehouse Institute of Design asked me if I would run a refashioning workshop for them for a fundraising event the were organising to celebrate the 65th anniversary of Prahran Mission! Woo hoo, I was going full-circle, in celebration of the year Prahran Mission opened their doors and the year Christian Dior introduced full circle skirts!

Mission 65 was a celebration of post-war glamour, with an abundance of colourful skirts, red lips, perfectly coiffed hair and carefully altered garments to achieve the new silhouette. Staged within the red velvet walls of Red Bennies the event was a roaring success with everyone looking spectacular in their New Look inspired attire.

As well as running a workshop, I joined a host of Melbourne’s great designers including event co-hosts Jenny Bannister and Philip Boon, A.Concept, Madam Virtue & Co, Candice Deville, Clemente Talarico and Kara Baker to donate a refashioned garment to be auctioned on the night.

Here’s the frock I made from a men’s double-breasted suit jacket:

for great coverage of all the garments on show check out Style and