12-14 April 2019

Jane Austen Festival Australia is an annual celebration in Canberra where Austen and Napoleonic fans from all over Australia come and indulge themselves in everything Regency - including dancing, music, food, games, archery, fencing, theatre, promenades, grand balls, talks, workshops, costumes and books. This festival is now a regular part of the ACT Heritage Festival, Australian Heritage Week and is supported by the ACT Government, the Australian Costumers Guild and the Earthly Delights Historic Dance Academy. Since its inception in 2008 this little festival has blossomed into one of the most delightful four days anyone could experience each April in an old and beautiful part of Canberra, the Federal capital of Australia.

May 17, 2010

Regency Costume Competition

The 2011 Jane Austen Festival Australia will be holding a Regency-Era (1795-1830 England) costuming competition for everyone to enter. There are four categories for entry:
  1. Women's Outfit
  2. Gentleman's Outfit
  3. Regimental Outfit
  4. Children's Outfit
Everyone is welcome to enter. Categories in the competition will cover three ability levels (Beginner, Improver and Experienced).
Each winner in each category will receive a season ticket to the Jane Austen Festival, plus a special "award winner" icon to place on their website or blog.
All you need to do is remember to keep good records of what you've done and what you've learnt in a "Dress Diary" - this diary will be considered as important as the final outfit itself. You won't be required to send the outfit away; we'll use photographs and email to keep your creation safe, wherever you are in the world!
We'll be looking at historical accuracy, skilful workmanship and thriftiness in three different levels - Beginner, Improver and Experienced.
Please join the JAFA Costume Competition Google Group if you plan to enter so we have an idea of how many will be entering and can keep you updated on any changes.


Skill level

You're a Beginner if you've been sewing for less than a year in total (if you've made three outfits in your lifetime, the first of which was ten years ago, count that as less than a year when you put your experience together.) If virtually every project you can think of is a completely new experience, you're a Beginner.

You're Experienced if you're a confident sewer who's been making clothes or costumes for more than five years, and/or you make or have made a living from sewing. If you think you could probably make a good job of most costumes, you're Experienced.

Anything inbetween these two counts as Improver - say, if you have some experience and you think you could make a passable effort at a selection of different types of costumes.



In order to enter we need to receive your entry email by 5pm on Friday February 4th, 2011. The title of the email should be "JAFA Costume Competition" and it should be sent to janeaustenfestival@gmail.com. We have four judges from the UK, the USA and Australia.

The email will need to contain:
  • Your name
  • Your email address (if different from the one you're writing from!)
  • Your sewing skill level: Beginner/Improver/Experienced
  • The category or categories you'd like to enter into
  • The title of your entry
  • Brief description of your entry, including inspiration, fabric, unique or historically accurate techniques or materials, any particular challenges you overcame, etc.
  • Link to your dress diary, 
  • Links to photos or a word document with photos attached.

You will not need to send the garments themselves to us.

Take up to ten photographs of the clothes you've made; we'll use these photos and your dress diary or documentation as your entry. Your permission to use those things on the JAFA site and in the Festival brochure/book is granted by entering them, but the copyright on the photos and text remains your own.
You can host your photos at a site like Photobucket or Flickr, or paste them into a word document and email it to us - if too large to email send it through www.yousendit.com
A dress diary is a journal that you keep during the making of an outfit that documents how you made it, what problems you came across and how you solved them, including any making-of pictures, and all your triumphs and tribulations during the project.

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