Issue 10: Editors' Letter

Dear TFA Readers,

We spend a lot of time pondering what makes a great collection. In our explorations of fashion in Queensland, we've been lucky to see many different types of collections, from small community operations and private collectors to the state's major collecting institutions.

In this Issue, we give you an insider's look at the workings of two very different collections of fashion.

The first is the State Archives of the Queensland Country Women's Association. Of course, the QCWA is not just about cake competitions! As our Pieced Together reveals, they have an important collection of photographs, paintings, handcrafts and other memorabilia that chart the changing lives—and dress—of women in Queensland.

The second collection is one we introduced to you in our last issue: The Templin House of Fashion. Overseen by three extraordinary women on behalf of a dedicated community, they hold one of the state's biggest and most spectacular collections of fashion. We conducted an intimate q&a with them to understand how a significant and well-maintained fashion collection landed in rural South East Queensland, and what some of their biggest challenges and rewards have been.

Fashion's relationship with art has been receiving a lot of attention lately (as it has done for decades, we might add!), so it's timely that art and design scholar, Jess Berry, should take a look at the way a handful of Queensland artists appropriate fashion magazine imagery in this Issue's Fashion Smarts.

Some wonderful interviewees feature in this Issue too, including Juli Grbac, Deborah Fisher and our leading stylist and walking encyclopaedia on Queensland fashion, Di Cant.

We're also really moved by the piece that contemporary artist Megan Cope produced for our Remember or Revive series in response to an important document of Aboriginal history housed at the Queensland Museum—we know you will be too.

See you next fortnight!

Nadia & Madeleine

Cover image: Detail, Illustrated front cover from The Queenslander, April 29, 1937. John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland.


A Significant Queensland Collection: An Interview with Templin House of Fashion

The Fashion Archives

What is involved in caring for a collection of fashion and textiles? We take you behind the scenes to find out.

Kirsty Bruce, 'Untitled' (detail), 2010-2011. Synthetic polymer paint and watercolour on paper, 55 sheets ranging from 14.6cm X 7cm to 39.5cm x 27 cm (installation, dimensions variable)

Fashion, Fantasy, and Fiction in Contemporary Queensland Painting

Jess Berry

Artists strip beauty, desire, and artifice from the pages of fashion magazines to make complex portraits of contemporary culture.

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Queensland CWA Archives

The State Archives of the QCWA are a treasure trove of women’s history in Queensland.

Breastplate belonging to Poonipun of Amity Point, North Stradbroke Island, ca. 1847

Megan Cope and Queensland Museum

Megan Cope honours the bravery of Poonipun at Moreton Island in 1847.

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Juli Grbac

Juli Grbac reflects on a life lived between Brisbane and New York, and future plans for her label.

Deborah Fisher

Deborah Fisher

Designer and educator Deborah Fisher looks back on 1980s Queensland style and what her Brisbane roots offered the US fashion market.

Megan Cope

Megan Cope

Artist Megan Cope on culture, place and identity.

Jess Berry

Jess Berry

Art and design scholar Jess Berry discusses the larrikin influence on Australian fashion.

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Di Cant

Di Cant is a stylish encyclopaedia of Queensland fashion. Starting as a model in the 1950s and 60s, Di continues to work as a leading stylist. In this recorded interview she covers the many highlights of her career, reflecting on changes to fashion and the impact of styling on women’s lives.

Massive flowering cactus bush growing beside a fence line near Cunnamulla, 1987

South West Queensland

TFA’s People & Places is your road-map to the key sites, figures, and scenes that have shaped fashion in Queensland from the late 19th century onwards. In Issue Ten we take you to South West Queensland.

Interior of Mathers Shoes, Brisbane Street, Ipswich, ca. 1960

Mathers Shoes

Mathers Shoes is one of Queensland’s longest running retailers, beginning as a family business in Ipswich in the 1920s before expanding in to a national retail empire.