Nice Work - Milly Sleeping's exhibition for the Craft Cubed festival - is now at its halfway point. Every day this month, I've received an image (by mobile phone or email) from the working space of a different local designer/artisan. Not long after seeing each submission for the first time myself, I've published it online - in small square format at Instagram, and in original format at the Nice Work blog.
By the time August is through, I will have received (at least) 31 daily submissions from 31 or more different Australian labels. The brief issued to these contributors asked that they send one image only - a representation of the contents of their studio, the tools of their trade and/or the nature of their work. They were invited to use their image and its accompanying caption to respond to the notion of 'nice work', however that may be interpreted.
We keep saying that Nice Work is a glimpse inside the studios and at the working practices of its talented contributors. As the submissions line up, side by side, we also anticipate seeing something/s less concrete - perhaps a level of tension and interest created by the diversity of the imagery. As 'curator', I've come to feel that the challenge for the designers - the brief - is equally simple and complicated, open and limited... and the project as a whole is an exercise in seeing what happens.
I'm very interested in the perspective that each designer has on their work and working life... The ways that each is willing, or unwilling, to publicly present and promote their work and the more personal aspects of it... The (questionable) intimacy, insight and immediacy that social media appears to enable... The kinds of 'candid' imagery and interactions that are now so prevalent in the realm of business-running and marketing, which appear vastly different from the business-running and marketing of the not-very-distant past. On a more technical note, I'm also simply interested in utilising and exploring the means for chronological documentation, which Instagram and other like applications seem to make perfectly possible and straight-forward.
I do hope that you will have a look and follow along. One thing that is made clear by the exhibition submissions, if it wasn't already known, is that the designers are very very busy people, juggling myriad roles, ideas and endeavours - and I'm thankful for their time and enthusiasm.
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Pictured: 'Nice Work' also has a corresponding store window display, which is developing in response to the daily submissions. It's not very photogenic but it's pretty cute.
We are having a good time sending some of our 'lucky lasts' out into the wide world. Here are a few more lingering beauties...
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Pictured: Arnsdorf nude slim jean (was $270 now $100);
Livia Arena Not A Drape tee (was $220 now $120);
Lonely Hearts Court tee (was $123 now $30);
Kuwaii Past & Present midi dress (was $329 now $150);
Limedrop Spanish blazer - clouds (was $398 now $110) - SOLD;
Romance Was Born owl skirt (was $290 now $150);
Materialbyproduct Street jacket (was $420 now $190);
ffiXXed o/s drawstring shirt (was $264 now $50)
We pulled together all of our 'lucky last' items, which are those single garments that linger after we've sold all of a style but one... We lay them end to end and covered the length of Elgin and Johnston Streets seven times!, until finally running out of garments just across the road from Casa Iberica (whence we popped in for a couple of Portuguese tarts).
Just kidding... In actual fact, we pulled all of our single pieces together... We filled three racks to the brim, and we marked all of the prices down significantly. This is the last phase of our Milly Sleeping's Winter sale, for the duration of August. Drop by today for the first pick of the lucky lasts.
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Pictured: the last ffiXXed Simplified Enjoyment tee (was $137 now $75) - SOLD;
the last Alexi Freeman Chain kite tee (was $199 now $100);
" " Kuwaii Geo midi skirt (was $339 now $175);
" " ffiXXed linen tassel scarf (was $87 now $50) - SOLD;
" " Georgina Thomas tencel Volume dress (was $446 now $200);
" " Romance Was Born Deco Dancer silk tee (was $290 now $150) - SOLD;
" " Romance Was Born silk Sunflower shirt dress (was $365 now $120) - SOLD;
" " Mücke one shirt singlet (was $245 now $110)
Dear reader... A quick note to mention that we are running a little competition via email tomorrow morning, which you may like to try your hand at! If you are not already a mailing list subscriber, register your details in the 'Correspondence' section now (see the sidebar at right), to receive occasional and irregular sweet tidings from us. Speedy typists will have the best shot at picking up tomorrow's prizes - 10 x $30 gift vouchers to spend during the last leg of our Winter sale. More details to follow...
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Pictured: lucky last ffiXXed Less World silk tee (was $312, now $100) - SOLD
Clockwise from top left in the second round of 'snippets' this week (the bluey greeny purpley edition):
treasurable little bracelets by POMS, conceived by Amanda and Sally of As | Is, to raise awareness and funds for Eating Disorders Victoria. Purple or green, the bracelets are just $25 each - give us a cheer to have one set aside (or posted);
our window, as it looks at the beginning of the Nice Work exhibition, which will evolve daily throughout August;
a wonderful image of the Romance Was Born Magicland jumpsuit in Fern Forest print, pictured in Marie Claire magazine... which has created such a fuss, that RWB have decided to put it into production for S/S. Put your hand up if you want one, too;
the lovely Kuwaii Jubilee dress - a Milly favourite - which is among the latest round of new pieces to be made available in our online store.