the LAND and the SEA Costumes

Our costumes made from waste materials are now ready for display. They will appear tomorrow (Monday 17th) late morning in one of the large windows of Moray Reach Out in Church Street, Buckie.

The costumes are made from discarded fabric and waste plastic, with the material processed in various ways. From a labour of love the costumes and headpieces were born, to provide an illustration of the range of techniques and possibilities in upcycling. The photos show an example of stages of development, from PET plastic bottles to a cape collar.

Towards the end of this month workshops will get under way with a drop-in open day at the Moray Reach Out premises.

Then at the end of March we will be moving to Moray Art Centre, for a week of an exhibition with drop-in workshops for the Easter holidays.

Project supported by Moray Leader.

This upcycled costume installation comprises two pieces that are the result of a collaboration between artists Selena S Kuzman (costume design) and Caroline Bury (headpieces).

The costume designs were born in celebration of nature and its textures and moods, inspired by the nature of the sea and the nature of the land. The materials come from various forms of waste – from plastic bottles to pre-loved textiles and jewellery pieces.

The artistic garments are inspired by the organic shapes found in Nature, with various stages of manipulating materials – destruction and reconstruction, dyeing, needle felting, shaping plastic, glass seed beads embellishments, patchwork, 3D shibori, and sashiko (a little-stitch technique) – in order to construct new kinds of garment.

The creative process of reimagining post-consumer waste embodies the animating of discarded fabrics from a two-dimensional flat surface into a three-dimensional object that leaves a “memory on cloth” – a permanent record, whether of patterning or texture, of the particular forms of resistance to the change.

Textiles include silk, chiffon, voile, brocade, georgette, muslin, organza, tulle, polyester, viscose, rayon, crepe, taffeta and cotton.

Other explorations include experiments with cyanotyping (sun printing), with first treating the fabric with chemical solution and masking the surface to form a design, then exposing it in sunlight.

The two most recent costumes were developed as part of a project supported by Moray LEADER, to open up creative opportunities from the use of waste. The project includes community workshops in various parts of Moray.

The hope is that the project will leave behind a vision of what can be achieved through upcycling and an inspiration to try it. It is also hoped that it will encourage interest in traditional skills such as sewing, through their potential to creatively transform waste into something of beauty.