Author Archives: lukesarra

And… it is

My first- and final post.

We were given the whole summer holidays to ponder on a woollen mermaids swimwear concept… Unlike my fellow classmates I wasn’t in fabulous London or somewhere exotic …… But in T-bar (Toowoomba) where I had ample time to research and create a concept, due to the fact that there is nothing to do there.

3 Months Later– Suddenly I’m back at uni with no set in stone concept… I have a serious procrastination problem.. A complete reoffender!!

However over the holidays I did reignite the flame between movies and myself… I became a serious cinephile.. And LOVED IT!

Baz Luhrmann’s 1996 epic film Romeo and Juliet’s artistic direction was a huge inspiration for me visually. This original inspiration led me to South American Christian culture and their colourful shrines. I watched numerous movies on Oscar Romero and paid close attention to the places of worship in these realistic adaptations of Mexican culture.

To sum it up they were. Colour. Colour. Colour. Jesus. Colour

I looked into trends and fell in love with Trash and Vaudeville..Trash and Vaudeville

Picture 259

I love the concept within fashion that if something is so wrong… its strangely fashionably right

Slightly off.. is what Eurotrash Catholicism (my concept) IS>

Eurotrash Catholicism

New Age Catholicism attracts church goers with seedy neon tube lights and  fluorescent Jesus’

neon jesus

I wanted to approach my swimsuit in a similar way to this new take on catholicism… Deconstruct the image of standard swimwear and play with traditional conceptions.

Picture 25057

Those saggy buns are history.. a bra for your bum. Playing with traditional swimwear ..

Other DesignsPicture 2242 230e 227236 238234225





Picture 176sample 2

Sample stage- the fit was horrible . I found stretch very interesting to work with! Initially i was going to have a cape over the breasts. But it didnt have the desired effect. So I opted for Gernreich style, which coincidentally works with my eurotrash concept of challenging what western cultuere deems acceptable.

Toile Stage

ToileToile bum bra


Overall the woollen Mermaids swimwear brief was a really great learning experience, working with stretch and thanks to Jillian I have learnt invaluable skills about fabric handling and special swimwear techniques.


Final Artwork


Completed Garment Images and Artwork Still to Come

yea yea

Thursday May 14th 9:01 am

…Ok, so its actually 10:42, but 9:01 gives the illusion that I am an avid bloggerand just could not wait to tell you about the last 48 hours. 

After the dramas in my previous post I pulled myself together and sewed up a storm from 12pm Tuesday until 1am Wednesday.  It all worked out pretty ok bro.  The elasticating overlocker is especially dreamy…mmm…and I only unpicked once.  Then thankgoodness, despite being slightly tight and a little crinkled, the zig zag machine gods were looking down on me.  Im pretty sure that thing is impossible to unpick…luckily I did’t have to.  There are a few minor problems which sort themselves out when one the body. 


Reflection of Production

Good Points:

  • I managed to do some pretty nifty thinking in order to convert this tech drawing design into an actual wearable garment
  • I overcame lots of obstacles and continued to better my garment quality.
  • I really learned to keep my cool and stay focused
  • the first assignment i would say i am happy with [production can always be more streamline though]

Bad Points:

  • My constant fixing made the swimsuit slightly smaller and I had to stretch and be creative when constructing the swimsuit
  • The hip measurement could be a little larger and hence safer re: fitting
  • The lining is stretched into place in parts, this causes a slighty bow in the back muscle section. This does fix itself when on the body though.
  • The zig zag is a little tight

What I could do better:

  • I can always be more patient and careful with production
  • I could have made with small slits to place in the padding later hence avoiding difficult sewing
  • My pattern when retraced at the end not amazing.  I didn’t put cut notches into it.
  • Detail, Detail, detail!  I need to learn to be as obsessive as possible with production.  It causes a lot of stress and tears but is well worth it in the end

Now…onto the artwork and presentation.  I am going to take a very professional approach to the presentation and hopefully do some multimedia WOWING!   …Its amazing what a bit of friendly competition will do to you.       

Monday 11th

So…today went marvelously.  I managed to fix up all my special shaped side panels and adjust the man-bits to a good size.  My cod piece went in swimmingly [lol] and i started to attatch the lining.

Then…disaster struck.  The little pockets that I made to hold my chest, back and bottom pieces in with ripped to the sh*thouse.  This fabric is not visible but plays an integral part obviously in securing the man-bits in place. 


FYI…fabric testing seems like a pretty [insert ‘f’  word here] ing good idea right about now.  Because if i had of used this fabric in my toile and tested it I would have known beforehand never to go to that slumdog  fabric store where you take five hours to get served and the ladies are…large “oh no he didnt”.  Dont do drugs, do your fabric testing.


This swimsuit production has been exasterbatingly up and down.  My toile went smoothly but everything that can go wrong now will.  Everday I come up against another massive complication and then I fix it and then just as quickly something else appears.  At times it is actually impossible to sew my garment in a manner that would not mke a machinist cringe.   A two day job has taken three weeks. 

But alas…Im sure tomorrow I will be over this obstacle and will require only to elasticate my leg and arms…finally.  Hopefully, was the drama has subsided, the garment will be amazing as I had hoped.  All the problems and anxiety just make it all the more rewarding afterwards.



Thursday April 30th aka like two weeks to go!!

Today was a very productive day.  I maintain that it was the extra hour sleep I accidently had ie/ I was late…what’s new?

Pretty excited about the new goal of the swimwear pieces.

I mastered the Cod piece today, padding it to make it soft yet masculine…arranged a special little velcrow[spelling] doobey-wack to keep the lining in place and comfy…and did some masterful handstitching aka it is awful but you wont see it anyway…ssshhh [at least I didn’t do it on the train this time].

Then…I sewed the side pleat-like pieces to attach to the panels.  I used one layer of moulding and covered it with one layer of wool and overlocked the edge.  This gave it a sexy little , highlighted, finish edge.  AND THESE WILL BE EASY TO SEW INTO THE GARMENT!  YEOOOW!

Unfortunately…I have no pictures for these bits as yet becauuuuuse…maybe I left my camera on in my bag and the battery ran out…maybe its broken now.  eeek

special mentions go to bra moulding for being the single best invention on earth – Anna for bumping me so I pinned myself – and to Gillian for turning a 2 hour cutting job into a 15 minute one.   

Ps: will someone please remind me to give Gillian her tweezers!  She left them behind so I hid them in a special place so no one would take them!



Deep End

YES!  Ultra deep end baby!  Even though I have completed a sample (basically as in above post) and have enough fabric to make the swimsuit four times over …I still feel that the ‘Ineveitable Luke’ will take over and the ‘Bad Lukey Subconsious’, in conjuction with the overlocker, coverstitch and every other type of sewing machine, will take over and somehow swallow my entire swimsuit to date. 

Sundays are a good time for sewing…noone can hear you scream….and by scream of course I mean curse and swear.   I keep sitting at the part of the table where the massive metal bit slams into my man-legs.  And so on and so on = my distaste for production. 

Its getting better though.  The wool is easy to work with and completing a sample collected my chromosomes and helped them work together and heal my confusion and assembly woes.  Luckily also, that the lining is simple beacuse i feel that whenever I try to place two edges together they reject like two positive magnets. 

I am approximately half way through my final swimsuit and am going to start the cod piece and side pleats of impossibility on Thursday.  Im V excited about the news on Thursday!!  Whatever it happens to be.  Despite not giving anything away, Dean’s ear to ear grin kind of made me feel that it’s NOT something like an extra assessment or something equally life threatening.  Im also excited that in the next few weeks I will hopefully be able to muster up some real deadly artwork to top off what I hope will be a fine-ass swimsuit. 

Yea Yea!


ps:   some pics so far