Mother's clothes inspired sustainable fashion range

A master's student from Nottingham Trent University took inspiration from her mother's wardrobe to research a new clothing collection which combats the culture of fast fashion.

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Mihaela with her designs

A master's student from Nottingham Trent University took inspiration from her mother's wardrobe to research a new clothing collection which combats the culture of fast fashion.

Mihaela Markovic, who's studying MA Fashion Knitwear Design at the School of Art & Design, created Clothes My Mother Wore after becoming inspired as a child by her mother's old garments.

The 24-year-old took elements such as the classic shapes and patterns of the once fashionable 1980s clothes and used them to create new dresses and coats which are designed to stylistically stand the test of time.

"I wanted to create clothes which have lasting connection with people, so that they want to keep them for longer rather than replace or throw them away," said Mihaela, who is from Croatia.

"It's going against the throwaway culture. I am trying to bring respect for clothes back. Today you can buy clothes for the price of a sandwich, but the quality of garments has gone and it's unsustainable.

"I have a lot of garments that my mother passed on to me, and most of my friends don't realise they're my mother's clothes.

"What I have done for my research is to take shapes and patterns from them and interpreted them in a new way, creating classic, modern clothing which won't fall out of fashion quickly."

Mihaela's collection also makes use of mohair - a silk-like fabric or yarn made from the hair of the Angora goat - after she undertook extensive research into the use of hair in fashion and grooming.

"In today's society, youth is what everybody wants," she said. "Women who have grey hair often used to dye it, but some now have the confidence to reveal their true colour and character. As part of this collection, I am using grey hair to support this shift, by saying ‘accept yourselves for who you are'."

Mihaela's work will be exhibited during the University's Open Studio exhibition, which will see more than 70 master's Art and Design student works going on show.

Taking place in the Atrium and Postgraduate Studio in the Bonington building, Shakespeare Street, Nottingham city centre, the exhibition is open from 10 am to 4 pm on Saturday 25 July, then from 10 am to 5 pm from Monday 27 July to Thursday 30 July

Dr Katherine Townsend, MA course leader for Fashion, Knitwear and Textile Design, said: "Mihaela has reimagined classic clothing design, creating an original, capsule collection of garments which can stand the test of time.

"It's essential that designers think along these lines if we are ever to turn the tide on the throwaway society and change consumer's unsustainable buying habits."

Other students featured in Open Studio include: Hollie Bellis and Lujia Zhang, whose sustainable fashion collections feature bespoke, embroidered garments crafted from reclaimed clothing and textiles; Gilles Werbrouck who was selected for Texprint, London in July and will show at Indigo, Premier Vision, Paris in September; Patrick Byrne and Fintan Mulholland whose collections have been sponsored by yarn companies, Knoll, UK and Lanecardate and Filitaly-Lab, Italy.

For more details visit the Open Studio website.

Mother's clothes inspired sustainable fashion range

Published on 24 July 2015
  • Category: Press office; Research; School of Art & Design

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