TAFE SA Students Win Last Four of Five Annual Handbury Scholarships


Sheepvention Fashion Competition leads to Milan

Why do so many fashionistas travel to Hamilton in Victoria for Sheepvention every year? Sheepvention, the district’s Pastoral & Agricultural Society show celebrates all things ewe, ram and of course wool, drawing over 25,000 people – many more than some fashion festivals! Unquestionably the most sustainable fibre for the fashion industry is wool and each year, along with a wool fashion parade, there’s a competition at the event which attracts the best emerging designers from around the country. They’re there for the Handbury Scholarship!

Sheepvention encourages students of design to use wool in their creations, through the Australasian Young Designer Wool Award and Handbury Scholarship. With the winner receiving a $10,500 scholarship to study at the Instituto Marangoni in Milan, it’s not hard to see why so many emerging designers from around the country enter! Last year there were around fifty entrants. The winner is selected from one of five categories:

Corporate Wear
Race Wear
Evening Wear/Formal

Amazingly, four of the last five winners of the highly prized award have come from South Australia.  While you might think they’re putting something in the water in that state, their common link is that they are all graduates of TAFE SA’s school of fashion.

The latest winner, Sarah Twyford, who won for her race wear entry, is currently in her final year of an advanced diploma in fashion design at TAFE SA. Elated after her win earlier this year, Sarah said she “always wanted to do something more creative,” after first completing a degree in pharmacy.

Like many of the scholarship winners, travelling to Milan to study design is something Sarah thought she could only dream of.

Sheepvention Handbury Scholarship Winner 2014 Jessica Nicholls

2014 Handbury Scholarship Winner Jessica Nicholls modelling her winning design. “I never imagined in a million years (I’d get to study fashion design in Milan).”

Sheepvention Handbury Scholarship winner Hannah Virgo-Colbey

Handbury Scholarship Winning design 2013 by Hannah Virgo-Colbey: “I wanted to break into the fashion industry but had no idea where to start; shortly after dropping out of uni (studying journalism), I discovered the Fashion Design Course at TAFE SA.”

Sheepvention Handbury Scholarship Winners

2017: Sarah Twyford – TAFE SA currently enrolled

2016: Toby Andrews –  TAFE SA

2015: Jemma Saunders- Gordon Institute TAFE Geelong

2014: Jessica Nicholls – TAFE SA, now Assistant Designer Bariano

2013: Hannah Virgo-Colbey – TAFE SA , worked at Australian Fashion Labels, Acler, now back at University

Handbury Scholarship winner Toby Andrews

2016 Handbury Scholarship Winning Design – street wear by Toby Andrews

Sheepvention Handbury Scholarship winner Sarah Twyford

Sheepvention Handbury Scholarship  2017 winning design by Sarah Twyford: ”I wanted a career change after becoming a qualified pharmacist.”




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