Graduating Textile Design BA(Hons) student Zahra Jelassi says she is “fascinated by the concept of what people choose to hoard and the narrative behind that”. Her final-year project focuses on the accumulation of possessions and the meaning surrounding these very personal collections.  

Zahra’s designs feature on garments through bold and graphic painted and photographic imagery, with detachable parts connected by buttons and reversable prints to create interactive and engaging detail.  

“The pin box dress was inspired by my housemate Issy, who collects the insects and bones she sees out on walks,” she explains. “This made me think about archaeologists and dissecting things so that they can be analysed in more detail, and of butterfly collections and how they’re collated in boxes with their biological annotations. I photographed Issy with some of her collection before deconstructing and reconstructing the image, which formed a striking design once transferred onto recycled mesh fabric at a large scale. The transparency of the fabric adds dimension and interest. 

“I also played around with the idea of lightboxes and resin to give my work a more multidimensional and experimental presence, with the concept of strange, miniature collected objects being submerged and preserved,” adds Zahra. “I wanted to create a feeling of organised chaos.”


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