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Desert Designs Raids Its 80s Archives for Sustainable New Capsule Collection

Desert Designs' confident debut at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia has positioned the label as one of the most interesting new designers in Australia. But presenting a runway show wasn’t all it was doing that week. The designer also got involved in the eco-conscious ‘Clean Cut’ concept show, which inspired it to create a whole ‘nother collection. We are not complaining.

‘The Collector’s Collection’ is a sustainable dive into the label’s vast collection of vintage 80s fabrics. “All the fabrics were made and printed in Australia during the 1980s, the prints were revolutionary designs for their time and are now sought-after collectable fabrics,” the designers told Oyster magazine recently. “We were inspired to create a collection that gently used the archival fabrics to hand-make a collection of collectable pieces, paying respect to the quality and artistic integrity of the fabrics and the artworks.”

The archival collection has also allowed the label to showcase other local artists, in addition to Jimmy Pike, whose works are the only ones featured in Desert Designs’ most recent incarnation. Doris Gingingara, born in 1946 in the Northern Territory Aboriginal community of Maningrida, was said to have been taken by Mimi spirits as a little girl and put into a tree to be taught basket weaving. Trevor Woodward, born just a year later in West Australia (he still lives in the forest there) is a painter and printmaker with a prolific oeuvre that has won him major awards.

And it’s not just oldies Desert Designs are putting in the spotlight. Emerging talents Phoebe Woww and Grade have both been given the chance to hand-craft silhouettes for the new collection.

The Collector’s Collection is available at the Desert Designs Siberian Desert Store as of last night, so get thee to Chippendale for a very solid mash-up of Aussie style, stories and culture.