Wowee. As part of the I'll Show You My Craft If You Show Me Yours series, Tessa Blazey and Alexi Freeman have continued their collaboration, and produced another spectacular gown, for Craft Cubed and Gallery Three at Craft Victoria. Made from 600 metres of gold-plated chain, and 6,000 jump rings, the piece features a subtle reproduction of Alexi's 'Flapper' motif, and its edges have been burnt to achieve the gradual colour change at the fringes. Its slow rotation in the otherwise empty space is quite mesmerising - drop in before September 3 to see it.

Tessa and Alexi's first gown is now on display among the other finalists for the Love Lace award and exhibition at Sydney's Powerhouse Museum. Alexi tells us that the curation of the works is impressive, so if you're in the area before April 2012, it's no doubt well worth a look.

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Photograph above by Jorge de Araujo



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Old and new, too

In case you didn't know ... Melbourne's Mücke label is one of the most ingenious labels around, wholly committed to sustainable design. All of the new wearable pieces conceived in the Mücke studio are made by adapting, combining, or completely reconfiguring older garments (or using remnants and scraps to make accessories and jewellery). The results are always clever, curious and attractive ... and, as often as not, each piece can be worn more than one way.

Milly Sleeping has just received a couple of gorgeous Mücke buttonvestCARDIs ... that appear to be reassembled cardigans. Playing around for the sake of these photos, we came up with about five hundred and twelve ways that one could be adopted; here are a few examples of the most everyday ways:

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Mücke buttonvestCARDIs (RRP $220) - two only now in store!



New and old

A swirling look at the lovely recent arrivals...

As mentioned in previous posts, Melbourne-based Livia Arena is the newest label to Milly Sleeping, and it is very gratifying to see visitors responding so positively to her work. Our second selection of LA garments shows the variability of Livia's skill and imagination, and includes pretty practical pieces that one will confidently where anywhere/anytime - cotton tees with the wonderful windmill detail at the sleeve, and the pleated A-line windmill skirt - as well as the completely impractical, witty and adorable 'pretend' garments... the beautifully detailed sheer silk jumper and shorts.

Livia also created a one-off showpiece 'pretend dress' for her debut in the Independent Runway during the L'Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival in March, which Milly Sleeping has nabbed for display for a short time.

Livia's garments tie in very nicely with the new pieces by Romance Was Born, which are also both (typically) sophisticated and light-hearted. It's hard to believe but RWB are officially Milly's oldest label! Normally, we rattle on about how exciting and bright and bold the label is but today we have to tip our hats to their dependability, diligence and resourcefulness. Six years on, and still fresh as an unexpected Spring breeze... THANKS RWB!

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Pictured: Livia Arena Pretend Jumper (RRP $130) with Livia Arena bustier (RRP $121 now $97) and Jolet Frost pants (RRP $295 now $177);
Livia Arena Windmill tee, also available in black (RRP $180) with Livia Arena bustier ($97) and Jolet Frost Pants ($177);
Livia Arena bustier ($97) with Livia Arena Pretend Shorts (RRP $150) and Livia Arena Twist Leggings (RRP $88 now $70);
Livia Arena one-off Pretend Dress (RRP $599);
Livia Arena Windmill Skirt with Romance Was Born silk Tee Top - Nell Mother print - (RRP $295);
Romance Was Born silk Singlet Shift Dress (RRP $300)



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Rubellite (Part One)

Last night was spent at the new Rue de Fleurus on Gertrude Street, for Rubellite - an evening of design and culinary delight. In turns with the courses of an extravagant meal, the lovely Dee and Pheobe presented the guests with platters of jewellery by local makers including Julia de Ville and Deirdre Hoban, all the while adorned in garments by Alexi Freeman, Arnsdorf, Lui Hon, Romance Was Born and S!X. They looked wonderful, as the preview pics above suggest.

The proceeds raised by the dinner's ticket sales will be going to Feed Melbourne. Rubellite also aims to draw attention to the 1 Billion Hungry Project. Congratulations to Tracy for organising the event, and many thanks to Dee and Pheobe, Mariam and Naoya at BIBA Clifton Hill (hair), and Samantha Patrickopoulos (make-up). You all did great...

'Wardrobe' was tucked upstairs and didn't actually see much of the event but managed to corner one guest in the hall before the bathroom and elicit a few words ... apparently she was having a good time and the food was "gorgeous". The atmosphere was very warm and cheerful and a lot of fun was had by all no doubt. If you're curious, the Rubellite exhibition opens tonight at 153 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy from 6 - 9pm.

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Pheobe (at left) wears Romance Was Born silk sleeveless tee dress (RRP $460), Lui Hon Hepburn soft jacket (RRP $580 now $522), Alexi Freeman merino Ziggy scarf (RRP $89 now $80); Dee wears Lui Hon Wolfscape wool jacket/dress (RRP $440 now $400)



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Look what the cat brought carefully, quietly in ...

Milly Sleeping has fantastic new silk tees and dresses by Romance Was Born, and gorgeous separates by Livia Arena. More pictures and info will follow...

... Firstly, though, a quick nose through the State of Design event/workshops program. Our recommendations go something like this:

A different kind of 'open studios' event, whereby the invited practitioners set up a simulation of their working spaces within designated areas at the Design:Made:Trade fair. Elizabeth Yong of Primoeza will be one of the makers working from within the environment during the festival.

A Housewear exhibition at Goodtime Studios, featuring the work of many clever types, including ffiXXed.

The Repair Workshops! An amazing crew of artists and technicians are taking appointments to fix or recreate your broken possessions inside Donkeywheel House (opening Friday July 29th, running Saturday 30th). There will also be a developing artwork/installation taking shape on site AND... Emma Grace, one of the organisers and the expert jeweller among the team, has also arranged for a Loved & Lost collection unit to be housed at the site during the workshop hours. Thank you Emma!

Craft Victoria's site-specific installation BLESS No 38 Windowgarden by BLESS of Berlin/Paris, and 'placed by' PAM of Melbourne.

(I would also LOVE to go make a new head for myself during a pen workshop, with Ricarda Bigolin and Adele Varco ... how bizarre! Yay Craft Vic).

A visit to the Micro-Kitchen, put on by Broadsheet - yum, and an intriguing Design Reading Room...

And, lastly, Rubellite: A Winter's Feast, presented by Tracy Quertier (featuring garments from Milly Sleeping), at Rue De Fleurus, on Wednesday July 27 and Thursday July 28.



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