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2007/211/1 Mini dress with belt, womens, wool / cotton / metal / plastic, designed and made by Norma Tullo, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, worn by Irene Combe, Australia, 1965 - 1970. Click to enlarge.

Minidress made by Norma Tullo worn by Irene Combe

Designed
Irene Combe, born 1951, Sydney, was a fashion model from 1967-1986. At the urging of her husband-to-be, radio announcer, Ward 'Pally' Austin, Irene began her modelling career at 16 ½ years of age, joining Sydney's premier modelling agency, June Dally-Watkins Modelling Agency, late 1967.

The collection is a modelling archive of clothing worn by Irene Combe, 1965-1970, and illustrates a period of immense change in Australia's fashion landscape. Fashion in the 1960s was moving away from the …

Summary

Object No.

2007/211/1

Object Statement

Mini dress with belt, womens, wool / cotton / metal / plastic, designed and made by Norma Tullo, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, worn by Irene Combe, Australia, 1965 - 1970

Physical Description

A woollen red and cream striped mini dress with a fitted bodice and full skirt gathered in at the waist. A separate woollen belt is worn at waist and the dress also has a centre back zipper, high collar, long sleeves and five buttons down the centre front. Makers label attached.

Marks

Makers label 'TULLO' attached to collar.

Production

Notes

This wool mini dress was designed by Norma Tullo, an innovative Australian designer who was instrumental in raising the profile of the Australian wool industry by choosing to design with woollen fabrics. Despite having no professional training, Norma Tullo began her fashion career in 1956, while employed as a legal secretary. In response to a gap in the youth market and unable to find the type of clothes she wanted to wear, Tullo produced her own designs to great commercial success. Tullo offered more youthful options that lacked artifice yet were stylish in design, manufactured locally and specifically catered for the Australian lifestyle. She is credited with having 'cracked the youth market right open' by fostering an environment that encouraged a new generation of Australian designers.

(Reference: Joel, Alexandra, 'Parade: the story of fashion in Australia, Harper Collins, 1998, p. 82)

History

Notes

This mini dress is part of a collection of clothing worn by Irene Combe during her career as a model, late 1967-1970. Several garments in the collection were featured in various print media and commercial advertising campaigns.

Reminiscences of Irene's early modelling days, provides a colourful contrast to the experience of today's well paid models. Irene recalls that modelling was not a lucrative career in the 1960s. Generally it was up to the model to create 'the look' from a brief outline of requirements supplied by the agency. Models were expected to create several different looks using their own clothing, shoes and accessories, as well as do their own hair and make-up. Irene recalls travelling to photographic shoots on public transport carrying a large vinyl tote bag with clothing draped over her arms and her hair in 'Carmen' rollers.

Source

Credit Line

Gift of Irene Combe, 2007

Acquisition Date

11 December 2007

Cite this Object

Harvard

Minidress made by Norma Tullo worn by Irene Combe 2022, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 8 August 2022, <https://ma.as/364963>

Wikipedia

{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/364963 |title=Minidress made by Norma Tullo worn by Irene Combe |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=8 August 2022 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}