Fashion and flowers puts Christine on a flight to Melbourne 


Mixing horticulture with haute couture has proved a winner for clothing and textile student Christine Spielmann.

Her success began with the NT Tropical Garden Spectacular in August, in which fashion students were invited to design garments that reflected the exhibition’s flower theme.

They were put on parade during the Spectacular at the Botanical Gardens, with Christine’s silk evening gown beaded in flowers winning the popular vote.

It entitled her to a trip to a fashion show or trade expo anywhere in Australia.

Christine decided to attend the Clothing and Textile Expo at Melbourne’s Victorian-era Exhibition Building, which takes place this weekend. (November 24 and 25)

The Expo focuses on the new fashions coming out of China, which is increasingly becoming a major powerhouse of world fashion.

Nearly 100 Chinese clothing companies will showcase their fashions, which will be a chance to introduce their labels to the Australian market. There will also be exhibitions from India and Pakistan.

‘It will be a chance for Christine to see the designs from China, which is technologically very advanced in terms of clothing production,’ says clothing and textile course coordinator Armida Monteith.

Christine’s award was sponsored by the Nursery and Garden Industry NT, which decided this year that it wanted to enliven its activities by incorporating colourful fashion designs into its horticultural themes. It also wanted to promote emerging talent in the creative arts.

The 20-year-old Darwin-raised student has been studying Certificate IV in clothing production this year, and plans to continue her studies until she becomes a fully-fledged fashion designer.