How a year 12 dress project is teaching city students about cotton

Tuesday, 10th July 2018 // Breaking News, Featured // Comments (0)

A year 12 student from northern NSW is furthering cotton education through a dress she designed and made for her Higher School Certificate (HSC).

Year 12 student Issy Gourley designed a dress made of cotton from different stages of its production.

Issy Gourley grew up on a cotton farm at Narrabri, but attends boarding school in Sydney.

She wanted her major year 12 Design and Technology project to educate the public about cotton; so, she designed and produced a dress made of the fibre from different stages of its production.

The project features a necklace of cotton bolls, a top section made of raw cotton, a midriff made of ginned, carded and combed cotton, and a bottom produced of cotton fabric.

Issy said the project had taken most of this year to pull together.

“I’ve always loved sewing, and when I got to year 12, I wanted to make a dress,” she said.

“I realised I could do something about cotton, because we live on a cotton farm, and not many people at school know about cotton.”

The dress’ bolls and raw cotton came from her family’s Narrabri farm, the ginned cotton came from Queensland Cotton’s gin, and the spun fabric from CSIRO’s Geelong mill.

“I really hope it opens people’s eyes as to the amount of effort that goes into making the cotton fabric, and [teaches about] all the steps and how it happens,” Issy said.

“Most people at school don’t live on farms, so they were really interested in it and loved learning about it.”

The dress is now on display at the Narrabri tourist information centre, before it is marked for the HSC.