the making of mary mordaunt

This product is an example of something Rita has made in the past. She is a botanical dyer with years of experience who shares her knowledge through social media and workshops. Rita lives in Austalia and her products are sold using the Australian Dollar on her site. We did a conversion at the time of the import, but numbers may be off, depending on the exchange rate. She will help you with any questions you may have.


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NB – these items were made before I officially began the ‘torn’ collection but the techniques and ideas are connected; the jacket and dress are somewhat fragile so they would be great for occasional gentle wear or as a unique and stunning decor item for a sewing room or bedroom

To see a short video about this ensemble click here!

The Making of Mary Mordaunt

a ticking clock 
shreds time

my secret dreams 

my patience ripped 

can hope emerge 

or is this all there is

Mary Mordaunt was a young woman in the early 1900’s who, like everyone, had hopes and dreams that she put on hold for family and financial reasons. She deeply wanted purpose in her life, beyond the usual daily routine activities. Sometimes the frustration became almost more than she could bear, and she would feel herself unravelling. Her dilemma is an age-old one, especially for women, even today. The vintage clothing I’ve repurposed, the torn silk, the rust – all these express in visual form who she was and how she felt. The vintage suitcase represents both her desire to travel and see the world, and her willingness to drop everything to be with those she loved, even if it meant putting her own wishes on hold. The shredded paper symbolizes Mary’s feeling torn between her responsibilities and her dreams. Her story could be anyone’s, including mine!

[Eco dyed and rust printed vintage clothing; eco dyed vintage and new silk; re-purposed and shredded book; eco dyed crochet; vintage leather suitcase and hanger; hand and machine stitched.]

Measurements available by request.

Please note that a different vintage hanger is included than shown in the photo/s, as the original hanger has been lost.


“I am a Canadian-born eco artist living and working in the island state of Tasmania. I hold a Bachelor of Education (Art Major, distinction) and a diploma of Art Craft Design; I taught within the state education system, did management and community work, and then found my true calling after having a work-related breakdown in 2002. I opened my gallery/studio exactly 1 year later to the day and discovered eco printing and dyeing in 2008. I have always loved textiles and stitching and part of my mission is to raise awareness of them as a valid art form. My underlying philosophy is to create products and source materials as ethically as I can. I find and reinvent vintage and preloved clothing, fabrics and other materials with natural dyes, paints made from the earth and deconstruction techniques, allowing them to inspire my work. Materials for natural printing and colour are mostly foraged from our own property, where I can manage the trees and plants respectfully. My business is based in northeastern Tasmania, Australia; this is where I display and sell my work.“

art is like breathing to me – life and thoughts impressed on paper, cloth, the air; fleeting sounds and images captured before they escape forever

(c) Rita Summers

Visit my website to see what is current in products and workshops. I do offer a few online workshops if you are not local to Tasmania.   Gone Rustic Studio

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