Recycle Upcycle Fashion with Notre Dame

RIG Arts have been working with freelance textile artist and costume-maker Susan McInnes to deliver a series of workshops to a Second art class in Notre Dame High School. Their theme for this year has been ‘Fantasy Frontier’ looking at Native Americans and Cowboys.

The Native Americans are often considered the first environmentalists, being people whose care for the land and the water is intrinsic to their spiritual beliefs and world view. As such, the classes theme fits in nicely with our project’s objectives to encourage recycling and upcycling and to think more consciously about our environment.

For the first half of today’s session, we showed a presentation exploring the history of the Native Americans, the colonisation of the Americas by white Europeans, cultural appropriation, modern day struggles that the Native Americans face, and began to discuss how we could be inspired by the Native Americans to take better care of our planet.


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The remaining student who stay for the extra hour after school then began to draw out pattern pieces for bags and waistcoats inspired by their theme.

They’ll be making costumes and fashion pieces, working on manikins using donated fabric, informed by the presentation and discussions.

We’ll be back soon with updates on the progressions of the designs!


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