Recycled romance is a real fashion page-turner

Photos: Jamie Hunter JS Hunter Photography

A talented young fashion graduate from Heriot-Watt is causing a stir after creating a range of paper garments from the pages of romance novels.

Using fairytales as her inspiration, 23-year-old Suzanne Hamilton €™s creations include a floor-length gown complete with train, constructed using almost 6000 paper circles.

She sourced second-hand romance novels from local charity shops, and then glued the pages together to create large 6x7 €˜paper sheets €™ and laser cut the delicate designs.

Full length paper gown worn by model

Recyclable Fairytale

Demonstrating the stark contrast between the idea of fairytale luxury and the rawness of the recycled materials the designer uses.

Suzanne commented: "I really wanted to show that clothing can be reused and given new life, rather than thrown out. The fairytale dresses I €™ve created show that something luxurious and romantic can be created using the most basic materials, materials which we throw away every day."

"I €™m heavily influenced by the work of designers like Stephan Haan and Gary Harvey who both specialise in paper couture. I really wanted to use environmentally-friendly materials as I €™m passionate about using eco-fashion to help address the need for environmental change."

An overarching theme of Suzanne €™s entire collection is the need for the fashion industry to be more environmentally aware.

I really wanted to show that clothing can be reused and given new life, rather than thrown out. The fairytale dresses I €™ve created show that something luxurious and romantic can be created using the most basic materials, materials which we throw away every day

Suzanne Hamilton, Heriot-Watt Fashion Technology graduate  

Suzanne, originally from Argyll, graduated from Heriot-Watt University €™s School of Textiles and Design earlier this year with a 1st Class Honours in Fashion Technology and has already secured a number of opportunities to exhibit her creations.

Having gained a fabric sponsorship from leading ethical clothing retailer Offset Warehouse, Suzanne is now focusing on her future and looking for a job.

"I would love to design quirky, wearable pieces like those in Topshop but I would ultimately like my own fashion business one day, specialising in eco-fashion."

Suzanne €™s collection has already attracted attention with an invitation to showcase her garments at the Inspire the Attire 2 Fashion Event in Glasgow on 17 August.

She has also been selected to appear at the Hawick Border Textile Towerhouse €˜Futures in Excellence €™ exhibition in October.