local fashion design exhibition online

elements of this province's natural environment and the ethos of this place inspire design entrepreneurship. it shows up in these new designers - 2020 grads from CNA Textiles program

when Tara Lucia Hayes was little her great Aunt, who was a fashion designer, showed her how to sew, and she liked it. 

as she grew up Tara never lost the like of sewing but it shifted out of focus as other priorities moved in.  that is until September 2018 when she began the study of design and textiles under the tutelage of esteemed designers Barry Buckle, Stephy Stoker and Susan Furneaux at the College of the North Atlantic's Textiles program. 

for more than four decades the program has existed in various forms, and has graduated a critical mass of textile artists whose names are well known in the industry here in NL and far beyond.

many of the powerful collective of NL designers - Melianie Jacques, Sooley, Charlotte Street, Rod Philpott, Mandy Lee Dawe and others - have influenced, and been influenced by the CNA body of work.

so has the land and sea and human-scape of the province influenced the body of work for 2020's graduates. foraged flowers and berries offer colour, emossing carries the texture of rock, and giant pops of colour and fuzzywuzzy things reflect a bold changing world. 

the study of design entrepreneurship is a collaborative one that typically requires machinery as well as common creativity, so COVID-19 threw its own unique curveball to the graduating class of 2020. 

no worries.  the collaborative aspect of design entrepreneurship - and technology - rose up.  the Craft Council of Newfoundland and Labrador Gallery is showcasing the Craft Exhibit and Fashion Show of the 2020 graduating class of College of the North Atlantic’s Textiles: Craft & Apparel Design Program.  you can shop for many of the artists works through their online shops - social media contacts and video at end of article. the exhibition will run to mid-July. click to view.


(Linen Jumpsuit, below) St. John's-based textile artist Tara Lucia Hayes focused her study on in garment construction and surface embellishment (print & dye).  she received the Dr. Anna Templeton Award from the Newfoundland and Labrador Women's Institutes (2019), as well as the G&S Award for Outstanding Skill in Print and Dye.

all photos submitted from the College of the North Atlantic Textiles collection.


(Land, Air and Sea Jacket) St. John's-based textile artist Gillian Read learned weaving through the Textile program. she creates garments from hand drawn patterns with fabric she's woven.


(Scarf - 'Hope') almost four decades as an RN inspires St. Shotts-born Debbie Lee's work. she pays homage to her life experiences in her knit, felting, embroidery and quilting techniques. Debbie is the winner of the Craft Council of Newfoundland and Labrador Award for Most Cohesive Body of Work.


(Pear Coat) there is life in the 'well-handled clothing' of Allison Claire Murphy.  inspired by colour and everyday experiences, Allison's pieces share nature's textures and colours. 

(Florence Dress) Sydney Anna White's focus falls on knitwear and apparel design. from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Sydney's work is rooted in practical comfort, but it evolves by the stitch with each piece integrating something different from the one previous.
(WTF Raw Noise) Deanna (Dee) Coombs was raised in Corner Brook and loves bold mix in apparel as well as artwork.  she considers the making of art a craft, created using formal rules that refer to social reality. 
(Sky no. 2) a photographer of the Southern Shore, NL, Teresita Swain focuses on Print and Dye and Embroidery in her textile art. softness of colour brings my scenes from life and drawings, into studies hand dyeing natural fabrics, and applying embroidery techniques. 
(Her Favourite Tool) Nova Scotia-born textile artist Mya Cousins took on the study of Apparel and Embroidery/Quilt.  Mya's signature style combines costume themes with everyday versatility.  Mya is the winner of the Telio Award for outstanding design in apparel. 


(Carousel Elephant) the work of textile artist Emma Noseworthy starts with a sketch and usually includes multiple media. video games, cartoons and anime are sources of her inspiration. 


(No More Stolen Sisters) Andrea Penney of Labrador expression in textiles is rooted in tradition, but presses the boundaries of tradition through the use of different materials, and unexpected colours. 


(Small Works Drawstring Bag) Angel Strong finds expression in her textile work - 'catharsis in creation'.  her work merges the world of fantasy and reality and is a window to the chaos and solitude of creativity.

check out more from these up and coming designers - vid below!  

find and follow on Insta: @taraluciadesigns; @freakyfurcreations; @andreapenneyfiberart; @naturleedesigns; @gillianlauraanne, and Twitter:  Twitter: @FreakyFurs; @RenewsHikergirl 

photography - College of the North Atlantic photography class

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Kim Todd

kim loves when art, clothes and sustainability come together. she is the founder and CEO of thegreenrock.ca ~ Live Sustainably NL Inc., and guide to the good social enterprise. the dress she's wearing is a Charlotte Street original.