FASHION and recycling go hand in hand for TAFE Queensland East Coast fashion graduate Yasmin Bridges.
Her business Awkward Chat focuses on clothing ethically sourced and made from recycled materials.
“My philosophy is no matter how awkward it is, let’s have conversations about where our purchases come from and ask the questions like how are the earth and its inhabitants treated?” she said.
“We have so much choice in our world and we can make better choices if we ask the right questions.”
Talking about her experience at TAFE Queensland East Coast Yasmin said she loved the sustainable focus.
“I came to TAFE so I could learn the skills to create something from nothing and as such my process evolved since I studied there and now I’m even tutoring other students at TAFE and Awkward Chat is on the back burner.
“Learning pattern construction has meant my designs now have a better fit and are more wearable.
In the past, she “upcycled” clothing by draping it on a mannequin, pinning a new shape or design and then sewing it in place.
Yasmin showcased her graduate collection Connect Your Story at the Peregian Beach Food and Fashion Fiesta last year with one of her pieces being modelled partly made from the cover of a director’s chair.
“Everything I create is made from either second hand, reused or sustainably sourced materials and therefore is either limited run or one of a kind.
“My graduate collection was titled Connect Your Story to encourage questions and conversation about the human story behind the clothes we wear, reinforcing that we are all interconnected.
Yasmin said she liked to design characters doing something they love and to connect people buying with the makers and producers of the material.
“My fashion illustrations depict the women doing something that they love: jumping in puddles, taking photos, exploring, reading, and painting,” she said.
“They represent real people, living real lives, not just standing still and posing, disconnecting the viewer from their humanity.
“I am excited for the day when ethical fashion is able to drop the tag because it has become the standard.
“I would love to use my illustrations, creations, photographic styling and curiosity to learn about our world and to encourage the same curiosity in others.”