Alice’s Amazing Coat of Quotes

tabard or cape

Materials: embroidery cottons, gold lurex fabric, metallic polyester fabric

Technique: cut-paper lettering design, appliqué, embroidery, sewing

Size: 120 x 65 cm

Description: This coat epitomises the topsy-turvy world of Lewis Carroll‘s Wonderland, in which things are not always as they seem, and anything is possible when seen through the Looking-Glass. This coat is really only half a garment, and can be worn in a variety of ways, thus leaving plenty of scope for fantasies and vivid imaginations, dependent only on your mood and the situation!

The gold lace appliqué on the front (or is it the back, or the side?) at first appears as an abstract design, but on closer inspection it contains the quirky words of the Jabberwocky poem. "'Twas brillig, and the slithy toves did gyre and gimble in the wabe; All mimsy were the borogoves,and the mome raths outgrabe."

Some of the gold edges are slightly frayed, symbolising the unravelling chaos as Alice’s world becomes increasingly confused.

It then becomes apparent that the back of the dress (or is it the front?) is completely different. Snippets of ‘colourful language’ head off in different directions, just like the myriad of confusing events in Wonderland. These quotes highlight the uncertainty of meanings and the difficulty of understanding that often occur in Alice’s world (and also in our real world)!

The Duchess: Take care of the sense, and the sounds will take care of themselves .... The Mock Turtle: I never heard it before, but it sounds uncommon nonsense .... Alice: It would be nice if something would make sense for a change….Curiouser and curiouser

So these stitched-up thoughts from the Duchess, the Mock Turtle and Alice herself, reinforce the notion that the entire collection of Wonderland stories (and also this half-coat) are all artfully embroidered fantasies.

One of only 20 entries selected for the “Art U Wear – Alice in Wonderland” exhibition, displayed at the Textile Art Festival, Brisbane and Melbourne in 2010.
Modelled at the Cathedral of St Stephen fashion parade in 2010 and the “Icon” fashion parade at Springfield in 2013. 
Printed in “WordsWork” published by the Australian Society of Calligraphers (ISBN 9780646542652) in 2010.
Printed in the 6 page article in “Down Under Textiles” (issue 13) in 2013.



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