Emerging designers unveil their first collections at grad parade

The HomeStart Fashion and Costume Graduate Parade 2024 has launched a new generation of designers in a vibrant showcase of elegant eveningwear, edgy streetwear and futuristic costuming at the Adelaide Festival Centre Plaza on Friday.

Entitled Bloom, the parade featured the collections of 43 graduates of the Bachelor of Creative Arts – Fashion and the Bachelor of Creative Arts – Costume, dual awards offered by Flinders University and TAFE SA.

A launching pad for the emerging designers, the graduates presented their work to not only family and friends but also key personnel in the SA fashion industry.

Utility and street wear, festival attire and special occasion gowns all featured on the catwalk as the graduating students highlighted their diverse interests and talents.

Silhouettes ranged from oversized and asymmetrical separates to figure-hugging gowns, with design influences including nature and the environment, travel, art, history and past fashion eras.

The parade featured one of the largest group of costume graduates to date, showing designs inspired by arts and entertainment offerings such as the ballet, Giselle, the TV series Wednesday, Sonic video games and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy movie.

The costume collections are now on show at the Flinders University’s new City Campus at Festival Plaza until April 3.

Drawing on the knowledge and skills gained over three years of study, the graduates used a range of techniques and tools to give their outfits an individual aesthetic, creating signature prints, using natural dyeing techniques, upcycling fabrics and handcrafting embellishments.

Helen Jansson, TAFE SA’s Principal Lecturer Fashion, Costume and Textiles and Adjunct Lecturer at Flinders University, says the class of 2023 has embraced creative freedom and taken the opportunity to explore new techniques and processes.

“Our students have created their own textiles through texture manipulation, embellishment and print design to create uniqueness in their ranges,” Helen says.

“They’ve also shown a considered approach to incorporating sustainability as a standard part of their process.

“This year we have a strong contingent of menswear and gender diverse collections so the parade will be a dynamic blend of design ideas and ethos.

“Our costume graduates are asked to reimagine the outfits for an established production and the class of 2023 has chosen a broad range of themes, from anime through to dance and theatre, and applied their skills to create gorgeous costumes.”

Bloom is generously supported by HomeStart, which presented four key awards on the night:

HomeStart Graduate of the Year Award for Fashion – Zoe Kao

HomeStart Graduate of the Year for Costume – Trini Lee

HomeStart Academic Merit Award for Fashion – Danica Pedretti

HomeStart Academic Merit Award for Costume – Tammie Collins

Award winners (from left) Tammie Collins, Trini Lee, Danica Pedretti and Zoe Kao with Andrew Mills from HomeStart.

HomeStart CEO Andrew Mills says HomeStart supports the parade as part of its advocacy for young South Australians working towards their dreams.

“The Fashion and Costume graduates have a bright future ahead of them in the creative industries – and it is a privilege to see their dreams coming to fruition,” Mr Mills says.

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