Wearable Art Workshops

Upcoming Workshops

Wearable Art Mandurah 2020 Designer Symposium
28 March 8.30am - 4.45pm
Fishtrap Theatre, Mandurah Performing Arts Centre, Ormsby Terrace, Mandurah 6210 WA

Wearable Art Mandurah is here to support you in the creation of your garment, helping you to bring your wildest dreams and creativity to life while ensuring a practical, safe and well finished result.

Create well balanced, professional and high quality garments both on the inside and out, that look incredible on a model onstage and close up in the gallery.


Past Workshops

Dyeing to Upcycle | 8 September

Dyeing to Upcycle

Time: 9.30am-1pm
Location: CASM Workshop, 63 Ormsby Tce, Mandurah
Suitable for beginners. Cost: $60

In this 3.5 hour workshop, participants will learn safe, environmentally friendly techniques for upcycling a range of secondhand materials, particularly cotton fabrics. Content will include pre-dyeing steps (scouring, soy, alum and tannin mordants), dyeing with a range of local, sustainably sourced materials and post-dyeing steps (iron bath, mark-making with modifiers).

Students will learn through a practical, hands-on approach and discover the difference that each step makes to the colour range and fastness of dye outcomes. Techniques learned in this workshop are transferable to a wide range of fibre art mediums that can be utilised in future Wearable Art garments. A strong focus of the workshop will be on safe experimentation, record-keeping and environmental responsibility.

All materials and equipment provided and includes afternoon tea. Students will take home workshop notes and samples of the cloths as reference materials.

Backpack Garment Support | 14 June

Backpack Garment Support

for ages 16yrs+
When: Friday, 14 June 2019.
Time: 8:30am - 5pm
Cost: $185
Location: Coodanup College Trade Training Centre  - Corner of Wanjeep St & Steerforth Drive, Coodanup

Ever wondered how to balance unusually shaped garments on the body?

Working with assorted hand-tools, learn how to design and construct a basic aluminium backpack frame.

This Wearable Art workshop is suited to advanced makers who have an interest in altering body shape/silhouette but have been experiencing difficulty balancing load and weight.

Louise Grimshaw is a lecturer in prop design at the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts.

Very limited spaces – book early!
Cost includes all materials needed.

Secrets to Zero Waste Pattern Making | 15 June

Secrets to Zero Waste Pattern Making

for ages 16yrs+
When: Saturday, 15 June 2019.
Time: 9.30am - 1.30pm
Cost: $95
Location: ManPAC Dance Studio

South Metropolitan TAFE lecturers Mladen Milicich and Lisa Westover Piller unearth the secrets and inspiration behind zero-waste fashion design.

As passionate designers and pattern makers of sustainable fashion, Mladen and Lisa will guide workshop participants in the design and creation of a zero waste garment.

This four-hour workshop will include materials and equipment.

Headpiece Workshop with Jodie Davidson | 16 June

Headpiece Workshop with Jodie Davidson

for ages 11yrs+
When: Sunday, 16 June 2019.
Time: 9.30am - 12.30pm
Cost: $35
Location: Contemporary Art Spaces Mandurah | 63 Ormsby Terrace, Mandurah

Create a headpiece a la Wearable Art style. Express your history, tell a story or begin to play and see where it leads. You’ll be surprised! Focussing on creative reuse of commonly found materials discover how to screw, tie, stitch and bind them together and produce your own wearable art headpiece.

Creating Sculptural Forms | 27 October'18
Creating Sculptural Forms

Creating Sculptural Forms

Wearable art and Powertex with Ashley Hay

This workshop will explore a range of innovative techniques for creating extravagant sculptural forms and incredible textures in wearable art, using the Powertex medium.

During this full-day workshop you will create a wearable art piece for part of the body, experimenting with Powertex liquid sculpting medium, poly pipe, Styrofoam, cardboard, fabric, paper, alfoil and masking tape. Come along and be inspired... get hands-on and go home armed with ideas! Includes Colourtrix metallic effects.

From the attendees at the 2017 workshop, many were 2018 Wearable Art Mandurah winners!

Here’s what two designers had to say:

Elizabeth Morley, True Grit. Winner Transformation Category.After attending a generous and instructive workshop with Ashley I could see Powertex as a wonderfully versatile and useful medium. Whilst visually exciting, it can also perform the hidden, but essential, tasks in my work to give form and strength.Larissa Murdock, Gaiascope. Winner Avant Garde Category.Powertex allowed me to make my vision a reality. It gave strength and structure to a normally very fragile material.
Bookings Essential.When: Saturday, October 27 from 10am – 4.30pm

Where: Powertex Australia
230 Safety Bay Road, Safety Bay (behind Zocalo Mexican Restaurant)

Materials Cost*:
$35 for registered Wearable Art Mandurah entrants
$45 for Non-participants

*The facilitation of this workshop is sponsored by Powertex Australia - the only cost is for materials. The regular workshop and materials fee would normally be $195 per person.

All materials and tools supplied by Powertex Australia.

Creative Reuse in Wearable Art | 25 Sept, 2-3 Oct'18
Creative ReUse workshop

Creative Reuse in Wearable Art

for 18 Years Under

Following the success and the number of Youth entrants in the 2018 competition, Jodie Davidson will again present practical instructions and ideas to plan and create a wearable art garment for the 2019 competition. The series of three workshops include:

Workshop One:
Concept, development and planning followed by working with found and freely sourced materials to create effects and patterns for your garment

Workshop Two:
Getting the pieces together. Begin constructing your garment including headpieces and accessories

Workshop Three:

A wide range of materials will be provided, however, participants are encouraged to bring along any of their own materials if they wish to.


  • Tues, 25 September 9am – 3pm
  • Tues, 2 Oct 9am – 3pm
  • Wed, 3 Oct 9am – 3pm

Where: Lakelands Library & Community Centre

Cost: Free for aged 18 and under.

Headwear in Wearable Art with Louise Grimshaw | 26 August'18
Headwear Wearable Art Mandurah workshop

Photo by; Stephen Heath Photography

Headwear in Wearable Art

with Louise Grimshaw

This full-day workshop will guide participants through the construction process of making a stable and secure basic wire headdress frame.  It includes wire-bending techniques, soldering processes and upskilling technical abilities to create a wearable art headdress frame suitable for individual designs.

When: Sunday 26 August 8.30 am to 5.00 pm

Where: Contemporary Art Spaces Mandurah Workshop

Where: 63 Ormsby Terrace, Mandurah

Cost: $145 includes materials and equipment.

Participants to supply their own respirator suitable for soldering and safety glasses.

About Louise Grimshaw

Currently the Props Assistant at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, Louise has been employed as both professional staff and in a sessional lecturing capacity by the Academy since 2001. Louise also has an established freelance career in the local entertainment industry, specialising in prop construction, costume prop construction and scenic painting. Louise constructed costume props for the 2013 Rio Carnivale and most recently has worked on the Black Swan State Theatre Company production of Angels in America and the West Australian Ballet production of the Nutcracker. In July/August 2017 Louise had four Silkscreen Print works exhibited in the Collins Place Gallery Melbourne, by the Print-making Council of Australia.
Felt the Body | Martien Van Zuilen

Felt the Body: armatures, frames and skeletons in handmade felt

Location                                      Date and Time                                  Cost

MPAC Dance Studio                                  11-12 June 2018                                               $200 for 2 day workshop
Ormsby Terrace                                   
Mandurah, WA 6210

Join renowned felt artist Martien van Zuilen and learn a range of techniques to include armatures, frames and skeletons into handmade felt. Using wool and other natural fibres and materials, you can expect to finish an assortment of hand-felted samples applicable to all manner of art projects and creative ideas. The possibilities to incorporate armatures in handmade are truly endless; in this workshop you will discover what is possible and how.

Handmade felt is the oldest textile known to humankind; the contemporary applications of transforming wool fibres into one-of-a-kind wearable works of art are truly amazing.

This is a workshop suitable for all levels of experience; whether you are a keen beginner or an experienced feltmaker, the techniques and ideas presented in this class will cater for and fascinate all.

About Martien van Zuilen

Martien van Zuilen is a felt artist and tutor living in Perth, Australia. She exhibits her high-quality and distinctive felt art nationally and internationally. Since the late 1980s she has delivered felt-making workshops at all levels of experience; throughout Australia, in Europe and the USA. Martien is the founder of the Victorian Feltmakers, the current editor of Felt, Australia’s national felting magazine and the Convenor of Fibres West Inc. In 2013, she completed her PhD in Anthropology with an ethnographic thesis on the significance of women’s textile art in Australia. Martien’s artwork is published in numerous international publications, including Showcase 500 Art Necklaces (book), Textile Fibre Forum, Felt Matters, ViltKontakt, Fiber Art Now, Yurts Tipis and Benders (book), FELT, verFilzt Und zugeNäht, Pots and Pods for Feltmakers, Adventures in the Third Dimension (book), and Worldwide Colours of Felt (book).


Creating Movement in Wearable Art | Helen Coleman

Location                                      Date and Time                                   Cost

CASM Workshop                                       Sun. 10 June 2018                                              $55 for 2 hour workshop
63 Ormsby Terrace                                   10:30am-1:00pm
Mandurah, WA 6210

Explore the possibilities of motion in this Wearable Art workshop with award winning artist, Helen Coleman. Helen will share practical advice learned during the design process for her 2017 Architectural garment, Icarus Rising.

The workshop will begin with a theory session using Icarus Rising as an example, focusing on the creation of articulated segments, practicality, durability and wearer comfort. Helen will then guide students in a hands-on exercise, where they can consolidate and explore new information by creating an articulated sculpture that conforms to the human body.

All materials and tools will be provided but students are welcome to bring their own materials to incorporate into their sculpture if desired.

About Helen Coleman

Helen is an emerging mixed media artist from Mandurah, Western Australia. She works primarily with natural and salvaged materials, with a belief that nothing (and no-one) is ordinary.

With a strong background in science and information technology, Helen loves to experiment with new techniques and create art pieces that share information and inspire others. She enjoys being involved in projects that have a strong social or environmental message, or that push the boundaries of existing knowledge.

She is currently an artist-in-residence at the Contemporary Art Spaces Mandurah gallery, where she is exploring the ecodyeing potential of Mandurah’s local plants

Creating Form with Fibre | Kate Campbell Pope

Location                                      Date and Time                           Cost

MPAC Dance Studio                                  8-9 June 2018                                           $200 for 2 day workshop
Ormsby Terrace                                 
Mandurah, WA 6210

In this 2-day workshop, participants will learn a variety of innovative techniques to work with textiles and natural fibre materials. Methods include coiling, twining, netting and random stitch to create evocative 3D forms.

You can expect to create a range of samples, including vessels and pieces which sculpt around bodily form. The relationship between fibre art, wearable art and the body more conceptually will also be explored. Make sure to bring a notebook or visual diary to record your ideas for future projects!

Workshop structure:

Day 1:

Introduction/Workshop outline

Process 1: Random stitch to create a vessel – examples, demo, participant exploration


Process 2: Coiling – examples – traditional/contemporary, demo, participant exploration

Talk/Slide show – Fibre and the Body, including anatomical, historical and cultural references

Free Exploration, including drawing and further working with techniques shown

Day 2:

Feedback and Discussion following Day 1 – ideas germinating

Process 3: Netting – as structural, for draping, or infill – examples, demo, participant exploration


Process 4: Twining – examples, demo, participant exploration

Talk/Slide Show - Fibre and Form – what is possible and how??

Final discussion and questions

About Kate Campbell-Pope

Kate is a visual artist who as well as exhibiting widely, has worked in community arts, public art, teaching, curating, and mentoring. She has participated in group exhibitions locally, nationally, and internationally in Chile and Japan.

Kate has a strong affinity with fibre/textiles in her practice, often using low tech processes such as hand stitch and adapted basketry techniques.

Her work often draws on references from local flora and the natural world, and conveys ideas around regeneration and growth, ephemerality and place.

Creative Reuse for 18 Years Under | September & October

Are you curious about wearable art but need guidance?

Join 2017 Wearable Art Mandurah finalist Jodie Davidson as she presents many practical instructions and ideas, including:
Inspiration to clear the blank canvas and find that starting point

  • Practical play using repurposed materials
  • How to make your wearable art count this year using scale, colour, texture, repetition and rhythm
  • Application clarification and criteria, including valuable tips on what the judges are looking for.

Do you need inspiration?

Spend time at our ‘inspiration station’ full of books, images, DVD’s and wearable art ideas to ignite your imagination.

About Jodie Davidson

Jodie is a multidisciplinary visual artist with a varied practice combining the natural environment and urban development. She has worked with community groups in city and regional areas promoting creative ‘play’ to find inspiration. She uses predominantly recycled and natural materials in sculpture, textiles, illustration and writing to produce artwork that reinforces her belief in sustainability.


Click here to registerWhen
Wednesday 27 September 12.30 – 4.30 pm – Concept development, planning and design
Tuesday 3 October 12.30 – 4.30 pm Construction
Wednesday 4 and October 10.00 am – 4 pm - Construction

Falcon eLibrary and Community Centre
Cnr Flavia Street and Cobblers Avenue Falcon

Free for 18 and under

Wearable Art: Creating Sculpture | Saturday 23rd September

Wearable Art: Creating Sculpture | Saturday 23rd September

This workshop focusses on building structure and foundation and explores methods of construction.

In the design process, the creation of wearable art needs to consider but not be constrained by certain practicalities - balance, safety, durability, fit.

You will get a chance to explore different materials and production techniques and begin to understand how your own work might take shape.

Bookings Essential

Saturday 23rd September from 10am to 4.00pm

Kanga Paws Workshops

The Old Police Station, 45 Henderson Street, Fremantle, WA 6160


WAFTA @ Wearable Art Mandurah 2018 with Louise Wells, winner Avant Garde | Saturday 30th September

WAFTA @ Wearable Art Mandurah 2018 with Louise Wells, winner Avant Garde.

Would you like to enter Wearable Art Mandurah in 2018?

Says Louise: “I have loved being a part of this competition over the past four years, making lots of great friendships in this wonderful community of designers, and there are many, many opportunities to have your work shown. It’s going to be loads of fun! I hope you can join us, places are filling fast!”

Along with making her own garment for the 2018 competition, Louise is running a five month long – one day per month program WAFTA @ Wearable Art 2018, starting 30th September. This program will move step-by-step through the processes and challenges to create and enter your work in the upcoming 2018 competition. Louise is going to share her successes and disasters!

The program will cover:

  • Concept development
  • Material choices
  • Tips and techniques
  • Judging criteria
  • Mentoring and instruction
  • Pre-selection photography
  • Artist statements

Click below for further details and to book and pay online

Book OnlineSuitable for Beginners, Tertiary Students, Groups (1 or 2 people) and Individuals.

Foam Fabrication for Costume | Sunday 8th October

Foam Fabrication for Costume

This workshop introduces different types of foam and their use in costume and prop making.

After exploring the properties of each, students will progress through the various stages of foam construction from shaping, moulding, bonding, sewing, laminating, detailing and finishing.

We will look at adhesives, paints and fabric finishing and get your hands on working, shaping and fabricating your own piece to help you understand how this course applies to your own projects.

Bookings Essential

Sunday 8th October from 10am to 4.00pm

Kanga Paws Workshops

The Old Police Station, 45 Henderson Street, Fremantle, WA 6160


Creating Sculptural Forms | Saturday 28th October

Wearable Art at Powertex with Ashley Hay

This workshop will explore a range of innovative techniques for creating extravagant sculptural forms and incredible textures in wearable art, using the Powertex medium.

During this full day workshop you will create a wearable art piece for part of the body, experimenting with Powertex liquid sculpting medium, polypipe, Styrofoam, cardboard, fabric, paper, alfoil and masking tape. Come along and be inspired... get hands on and go home armed with ideas!!! Includes Colourtrix metallic effects.

From the attendees at the 2016 workshop, three were 2017 Wearable Art Mandurah winners!

Here’s what they had to say:

Helen Coleman, winner Architectural: Last year I knew what I wanted to make for Wearable Art, but not how to do it. By the time I had finished Ash's Powertex workshop I had the techniques I needed to create Icarus Rising.

Carol Hazel, facilitator of Silver Chain, winner Powertex Award: It is versatile and easy to use. Ashley covered many techniques in the workshop which proved valuable in the making of Sands of Time.

Marie Gallin, winner (with Jude Tupman) Wearable Art Mandurah Artist of the Year: Thank you, Ash, for so generously sharing your creativity and experience with us all.[/box]

Bookings Essential

Saturday, October 28 from 9am to 4.30pm

Powertex Australia

230 Safety Bay Road, Safety Bay (Behind Zocalo Mexican Restaurant)

Materials Cost*
$35 for Registered Wearable Art Mandurah entrants

$45 for Non-participants

This workshop is now closed for registration.

*The facilitation of this workshop is sponsored by Powertex Australia – the only cost is for materials. Regular workshop and materials fee would normally be $150 per person.

All materials and tools supplied by Powertex Australia. www.powertex.com.au

Making Wire Structures: Headwear Art | Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th November

Making Wire Structures: Headwear Art

Have you ever wanted to make a showgirl style headdress but don’t know where to start? This is exactly the workshop you’ve been looking for!

Come along and be guided through the construction process as you learn to make and decorate a basic wire headdress frame.

Throughout the 2 day workshop participants will learn to explore wire-bending techniques and soldering processes.

This workshop will up-skill your technical abilities so you can confidently create any headdress of your own design.

Bookings Essential

Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th November


Great Southern Workshops

Porongurup Hall, Porongurup Road, Porongurup, Western Australia

$295 + $48 material fee