Territorian wins top fashion award 

Nadia Foti's stunning creation won her the title of Australasian Young Designer of the Year 2008

Darwin’s Nadia Foti has realised her dream to study fashion in Italy after being named Young Australian Designer of the Year 2008.

Nadia won the $10,500 Handbury Scholarship at the Australasian Young Designers Wool Awards held recently at Hamilton Sheepvention gala in Victoria.

The scholarship prize provides the opportunity to study fashion design in Milan, Italy.

"It's my dream to go to Italy and work for Giorgio Armani," Nadia said.

Nadia, who studied clothing and production at Charles Darwin University before moving to Melbourne to study a diploma of fashion and design, scooped the top prize with a woollen and silk gown described as a “showstopper” by the judges.

Her stunning creation, a floor-length ball gown in grey and black wool with metallic thread and an Elizabethan-inspired corset, took 220 hours to make, plus 28 hours of hand embroidery.

The evening gown was inspired by moonlight on Venetian waters, and also won the evening wear award.

There were record entries for the designers' wool awards this year, with 58 designers submitting 75 garments.