STYLEBK. welcomes a new innovation in design from Nessie Croft as she explores fashion’s identity through recycling discarded fabrics. Nessie Croft is currently studying her BA in Fashion Design and Honours at RMIT. Croft dedicates her practice to challenging the idea of what constitutes the wearers relationship with clothing.

Croft’s recent collection, Clæne, is developed from cleansing old fabrics from their previous state and transforming them into new garments. The newly formed styles look to create a greater connection with their wearer. Through pleating and layering, Croft explores how recycled fabric can be stripped bare and transformed to reveal a pure, original design.

Nessie Croft, along with creative director, Olivia Smythe and photographer, Stuart Chen, produced this editorial photoshoot to embrace Clæne’s statement pleats and layering, but also to reflect an overall minimalist vibe. They explored the subtle hues of orange, representing the glow of a candle light against the purity of white. The clean backdrops and framing accentuate Crofts delicate, layered aesthetic.

Its exciting to see a new wave of recycled fabric being revolutionised into fresh, modern silhouettes. Croft’s creations offer contemporary luxury through complexity of design and make us wonder if this is the way of the future.

Here is a little more insight from Nessie Croft on her designs and the fashion industry.

  1. What inspired you to rework used fabric?

I have always had an affinity towards creating something new from something old as it poses a design challenge. Upon learning about some of the harsher realities of the textile industry, I felt driven to incorporate it into my own work to help shift the way in which we consume fashion.

  1. What processes do recycled fabrics need to go through to be reconstructed into a new creation?  

I focus my practice on the wearer and cloth that has been transitioned from non-traditional fabric, such as curtains, bedding or upholstery. Once I have the fabric, a balance is created between the textile and the design outcome; where the origins are referenced through design signifiers such as a curtain hook, or a pleat from the fabrics previous state.  This ‘referencing’ is important as I like the idea of being able to visually trace a garment’s heritage.

  1. Do you only create one-off designs?

The nature of my practice does limit the outcomes, as the textiles are finite in their availability, but by creating one off pieces I create a sense of greater value, uniqueness, that is somewhat less apparent in the current fashion climate.

  1. Do you see this form of fashion design as a viable business opportunity – is it something you wish to pursue for your own label? 

There is definitely enough textile waste in the world that is going unused, there are already established and emerging labels that are capitalising on this. Sourcing up-cycled fabrics can be time consuming and variable, but this means my business will shift from conventional models of output and expectation.

  1. How do you feel this form of up-cycled design will effect the fashion industry in future? 

Up-cycling textiles is not overly new in the industry, but the way in which we are interpreting it now is far more inventive and exciting.  Practitioners working in this field are proving that the life cycle of any textile can be rejuvenated, I hope this will inspire designers and consumers to be more creative and resourceful.

Photography | Stuart Chen

Designer | Nessie Croft

Creative Direction | Olivia Smythe

Hair & Makeup | Maddison Devitt

Words | Renee Arndt