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Eye on Nature Wearable Arts

21-22 June 2023 | Due Drop Events Centre, Manukau

The search is on for Auckland’s most promising, environmentally-conscious young artists and designers!

Eye on Nature Wearable Arts is an annual competition for Auckland primary and secondary school students, run by the Beautification Trust. Students are challenged to create eco-friendly wearable art around the Eye on Nature theme, with $3,500 in cash awarded to the winning schools.

The garments are judged at the Eye on Nature Wearable Arts Fashion Show, held at the Due Drop Events Centre on Thursday 22 June. The showcase gives tamariki and rangatahi the exciting experience of modelling their eco-friendly creations on a fashion runway in front of a live audience!

Thank you to our sponsors for Eye on Nature Wearable Arts 2023!

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Why your school should enter

This year's theme: Waste

Every year we have a different theme. Our Eye on Nature theme for 2023 is Waste.


  • What is waste and why is it a problem? 

  • How can we help to reduce waste? 

  • What does less waste mean for nature? 

Hey there young environmentalists. Did you know the environment is the biggest and most important thing in our world?

Like a big family, it connects all of us together. In Te Ao Māori, Ranginui and Papatūānuku are the originators of all life in land, sea, and air. Everything has co-existed in harmony for thousands of years. Through natural processes, nothing is ever wasted; only recycled to be used as something else.  

Image by Hermes Rivera


Nowadays, there is a problem. Humans have been taking up too much space and using too many resources over the past few hundred years. Our harmonious way of living with nature has shifted, and now the environment can no longer support itself. There isn’t enough time for the earth to keep up with what is being taken, and pollution, litter, and waste are making it hard for our planet to thrive. 

There is hope though, because you can connect, get involved, and learn about waste in its many forms.  


As you go through your Eye on Nature Wearable Arts project, we encourage you to consider the positive impact that you can make now and for future generations.


We want you to think about everything waste!

  • Consider where your materials have come from, and where they might end up in the future.

  • Think of creative ways to re-use and re-purpose things into your garments.

  • And most importantly, think of ways that you can live to actively restore and help Papatūānuku and Ranginui, so that the environment can care for us in the future.   


Enter your school

Eye on Nature Wearable Arts is open to all Auckland primary, intermediate and secondary schools. Participation in the programme is free of charge.

Entries are now closed for 2023. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

Enter your school
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Teacher webinar

A recording of our webinar for teachers who are interested in taking part.

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Judging criteria

Read about the garment requirements and how the judges will assess entries.

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Teacher workshop slides

Download the slides from our webinar for teachers as a PDF.


Photo & video permission

This form must be submitted with entries for each student designer and model.

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Promo video for students

Show this video to your students to get them excited for Wearable Arts!


If you have any questions that aren't answered below, please don't hesitate to contact us.

  • Zero Waste Volunteer
    We’re looking for volunteers to help out with our brand-new Zero Waste hub! The Manurewa Community Recycling Centre is a place of community connection, a destination for learning and most importantly where practical actions can be taken to reduce waste to landfill. We are looking for some good sorts to help with assisting customers, interacting with the community, keeping up with general maintenance, creating shop displays and much more. If you have a friendly attitude and an interest in engaging with our Zero Waste kaupapa, and the local community, this is a great opportunity for you! By volunteering, you can support this worthwhile cause in a meaningful and hands-on way. You'll get to know our fun and friendly Beautification Trust team, become a waste minimisation guru in the process and help out in your community! If you are keen to help out between Thursdays and Sundays as an on-going or casual volunteer then fill in the form above!
  • Community Champion
    Love your local area? Become a Community Champion and care for a local space, like a reserve, walkway or waterway.
  • Community Events
    We host and support environmental education and community events which need the support of volunteers. Some events may include planting days, clean-up events, and place-making projects such as murals. We post all of our Community Events on our Events page. ​
  • Boomer Shed
    Our community shed for people aged 50+ is always keen to welcome volunteers to help out. ​ In particular we are on the lookout for experienced engineers, cabinetmakers, welders, arts and crafts tutors and other tradespeople to share their skills with others in our fully equipped workshop. If you have a talent and willing to share it - let us know! Find out more about the Boomer Shed. ​
  • Adopt A Spot
    We have an ever increasing number of wonderful people who help tackle graffiti and litter by adopting a spot. These people watch out for tagging and rubbish in public places on a weekly basis and then report it into the Trust. ​ Past experience shows that the sooner tagging is painted out and litter is removed the less likely it is to attract more.
  • Repair Café
    Do you know your way around a tool-belt? Do you like getting crafty? Join in with one of our Repair Cafés by helping out with repairing broken or damaged items!
  • Perfectly Imperfect
    We on the lookout for keen volunteers to help out with our Perfectly Imperfect Pop-up Shop. You will have the opportunity to learn about food waste, engage with the public and join a meaningful community of volunteers. The Perfectly Imperfect Pop-Up Shop is launching at the Beautification Trust on Thursday, 24th August 2023 and for six weeks, every Thursday between 11am and 1pm, locals will have the opportunity to fill a bag with delicious, rescued fruit & veg for just $15! Find out more to join the launch of an amazing programme.
Resources for teachers

Teaching resources

Fashion: Still Rising from Rana Plaza's rubble

Fashion: Still Rising from Rana Plaza's Rubble

Journal Article - How can we advocate for safe working conditions for workers from the fashion industry?

Illustration of women in cool clothes

The true cost of fast fashion

Video - Millions of tonnes of clothes end up in landfill every year—it’s one of the fastest-growing categories of waste in the world. How can the fashion industry continue to grow while addressing the environmental need for people to buy fewer clothes?

White sweatshirt and shoes

Teaching about the Fast Fashion Industry and Sustainable Production

Teachers resources - Links to resources, lesson plans, articles, and informational sites to help teach your students about the environmental and socio-economic pressures of a fast fashion industry.

Economic model

What if we don't buy products, we buy service?

Video - What if we didn't buy the goods we use, but instead favoured access and performance over ownership?

Fabric scraps with scissors

Recycling fashion: The town turning waste into clothes

Video - Fashion is one of the most polluting industries in the world. But a small town in Italy called Prato has built its fortune on transforming old scraps into new clothes, particularly knitwear and wool.

Outdoor clothes rack

Are fashion retailers honest with their customers?

Video documentary - Fast fashion is cheap, worn briefly, then discarded, leaving behind mountains of used clothing. Producers and retailers promise sustainability and recycling, but how sincere is their promise to make new clothing from old?

Vodafone Event Centre

VR Walkthrough of Vodafone Event Centre

VR walkthrough of the Vodafone Event Centre

Circular Economy

Explaining the Circular Economy and How Society Can Re-think Progress

Video - How can we re-design the way our economy works - designing products that can be 'made to be made again' and powering the system with renewable energy.

Rolls of white fabric bound together

BBC: The Price of Fast Fashion

Video documentary - Fashion lover Assefeh Barrat follows every stage of the production process - from cotton growers in the USA, to factory owners in Turkey and designers in the West to see who is leading the way in reducing fashion's environmental impact. And she asks consumers if they are really willing to change their fast fashion habits.

Stack of fabrics folded in a pile

Sustainability in the Fashion Industry

Teachers resources - Clothing and associated textiles have had major impacts on both the natural and social worlds. What are the positive and negative impacts that technology has made on natural and social environments.

The Story of Stuff

The Story of Stuff

Video library - The Story of Stuff has produced dozens of animated shorts and documentaries that chart a path to a more just and sustainable future.

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