Australia's National Costume for Miss Universe 2011 Revealed

Kooey Australia revealed their National Costume design for the 2011 Miss Universe Pageant today at an event in Melbourne. The National Costume will be worn by the reigning Miss Australia, Scherri-Lee Biggs as she competes for the Miss Universe title in Brazil in September.

"A literal translation of Australia's spectacular colours, this year's National Costume represents the whole country from the coast to the centre" says Kooey Director and Designer Nikki Silverthorne. "We have carried through the Kooey spirit and inspiration to the design."

The base of the costume is a yellow bikini, representing Australia's beach culture and picking up the yellow of the sun that Australia is known for. Paired with the bikini is a skirt of cascading blues on the outside representing the ocean and vivid reds and oranges on the inside picking up the colours of the desert sands. The gold of the belt buckle and headband represent the minerals, such as gold, that are also found in Australia's desert.

This is the first year that the costume has been a collaboration between designers. Kooey teamed up with, WA-based jewellery designer Alister Yiap who created the accessories -- headband and belt buckle -- that have been paired with the outfit.

"When designing the pieces I wanted to represent the rich natural resources Australia has to offer. I can't think of anything more suited to accessorise our Scherri-Lee in than Gold" said Yiap.

Also incorporated into the fabrics are contemporary Indigenous designs by Kooey's print artist Anne Hanning who was inspired by her heritage and spiritual connection to the Australian landscape.

"We have such a great relationship with the Miss Universe Organisation and it's a huge privilege for Kooey to design Australia's National Costume. We are so excited to be a part of everything and support Scherri-Lee in her quest for the crown in Brazil" said Silverthorne.

"It was a huge compliment to be asked to work on the National Costume. I'm often asked to create jewellery for runway, but this is in a league of it's own!" added Yiap.

The materials for the Alister Yiap accessories were kindly donated by the Central Institute of Technology. Shoes provided by Official Sponsor and shoe provider for the 2011 Miss Universe Australia pageant, Novo Shoes.

Kooey recently showed their 2012 collection at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim 2012 in Miami where Alister Yiap jewellery was also paired with the collection.

Kooey was the Official Swimwear Sponsor of the 2011 MISS TEEN USA® Pageant and have been a major sponsor of the Miss Universe Australia Pageant since 2009.

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