100% Natural with a Kiwi Twist

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This dress was created for the Australian Sewing Guild Annual Convention 2013 challenge.  The fabric is a bamboo and soy blend (purchased online from The Bamboo Fabric Store, Brisbane) which was a delight to work with.   The theme for the challenge was ‘100% Natural with a Kiwi Twist’, hence the bamboo blend.  “So why the Kiwi twist?” I hear you ask.  Well, the convention was in Auckland, NZ  – first time the ASG convention has gone overseas.  Soooooo….the twist is the embroidered fern detail.  Now that was a challenge!  I wanted the fern to grow out of the dress and become 3-dimensional.  Not being a machine embroidery guru I thought I might resort to hand embroidery.  DISASTER – looked like a dog’s breakfast!  OK, slight exaggeration but definitely not the look I was aiming for.  After a week or two of mulling it over I had a flash of inspiration.  Why not try embroidering the design on silk organza and then cutting it out and shaping it.  How clever – it actually worked.  Not one to stop when I’m on a roll, I then tackled splitting a fern in half. Look closely – the bottom fern is embroidered directly onto the garment. The next one up has the tip embroidered on the dress with the remainder on silk organza.  Voila! – growing out of the dress.  Each subsequent fern becomes more shaped, thus more 3-D.  I was ever so pleased with the result and so were the judges.

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