Bestowed Collection #17 - Behind the Scenes, Inspiration & Creation

Written by Sarah Garrett-Hodoniczky


Posted on November 26 2021

Two weeks ago we had our final photo shoot for the year, the fifth one for 2021. This one is a little different, coming from a different approach. To be honest I am exhausted from this year like many others are and I did think of taking the option to not do one at all.  But I wanted to do something artistic, I just didn't want to design, pattern make and sample new styles.

When I looked at my own wardrobe, what Bestowed garments I have for the hot humid weather ahead, I already have great things from the past collections, the only thing I wanted to add to mine right now was a new version of some of my fav organic cotton tops. To keep true to our values and only produce what we need, this was the logical option while still having the ability to do an artistic shoot. 


sustainable fashion photoshoot, australian fashion photoshoot

When Jay and I (pictured above with our model) started RANT Clothing back in 2003, we did lots of screen printing, in fact we did it all ourselves in the garage using a heat gun to set the ink. We both enjoyed creating the prints and we thought it was a good idea to do it again, however not actually do the printing ourselves this time round, but design something to print on some of our tops and get a professional to print them.

My vision was to have a print that said something meaningful, uplifting things without being cheesy. I wanted it to not be written across the tops in an obvious way but be done vertically in little strands of words hanging down in a freeform manner. We had the idea to reflect some of the sayings so you can read it while looking in the mirror or taking a selfie. It was important for it to be family project and include all of us as we are a family business and we needed to end this year doing something fun together. So we had to think about a subject we all shared interest in and that could be translated into a print, a print that all of us would want to wear personally.

Our subject...The Cosmos... a perfect subject as it is combines Jay's science background with Dakotah's enthusiasm for astrophysics. We came up with a combined vision using quotes from Professor Brian Cox and Carl Sagan. As Dakotah summarises it, In our current scientific understanding of the universe, we know that every single carbon atom in all life originated in the core of a dying star; all of the atoms of every living being, all the clothes we wear, the food we eat, are all fundamentally interconnected with the rest of the universe, forever. We are the cosmos made conscious and life is the means which the universe understands itself. Jay then looked at the chemical formula for 'Star Dust' which we included and I added my part to it, how I wanted it to look on a garment, and throwing a little Moby song in there, 'We are all Made of Stars'. 

I collected my most favourite Bestowed styles that I wanted to use for the shoot, deciding to use black and white only to simplify the look and highlight the print. I decided which tops to print on, and as I was keeping it simple I got to feature my two most loved black maxi dresses as the only dresses in this collection. For the styling I drew on my memories of late 80's dressing. When it was about the fun of dressing and comfort? Todd our photographer made some black and white panels that we could play around with and create interesting perspectives.

We also had fun creating the playlist for the shoot. Over a couple of weeks I added songs about the Cosmos, Stars, Moon etc. Moby featured of course, but there was a huge variety of artists and genres, Nick Cave, Sonic Youth, Echo and the Bunnymen, Yosi Horikawa, David Bowie (many times) and we even threw in the Monty Python Galaxy song.

Our Model is a face you will know, Vegan Eco model Amanda Rootsey but not as you've seen her before. When I briefed our Hair and make up girl Carly Stone about the looks, she totally knew where I was going and did these three looks below.

(above is Carly and Amanda)

Also in this shoot I styled with some amazing 3-D digitally printed accessories by local jewellery designer Sharka Bosakova. But I don't want to show too much in this story as I will have nothing left to share when we launch. Sharka came along to the shoot, she's the one in the below pics wearing light coloured clothes, unlike all of us in black.

So here are some behind the scenes phone pics from the day. 

When we launch next week, you will see the results.

Thanks for reading,





  • Comment author

    So excited for the new collection, Sarah! Love the black & white, cosmos concept, the amazing hair & make-up… the quotes, Brian Cox, Nick Cave?(heart..heart..)
    Hang in there, you make so many of us happy with your collections, hope you get your own share of happiness knowing that!

    Posted by Angelica | December 01, 2021
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