Mackay designer Jason Chetcuti’s design was selected by popular vote out of four potential finalists.
More than 100 designers from across the country submitted sketches to the competition.
Mr Chetcuti says he never expected his design to make it this far.
“I did it pretty much the next morning and emailed it off and forgot about it, and then about five weeks ago I got a call to say that I had been successful so I had to complete the project and get it to this point.
“So it’s gone from a concept to choosing fabric, pattern making, starting to construct the dress and beading it and hand sewing.”
Around 200 hours of work went into the gown which has been made entirely by hand.
“I did a lot of the work myself.
“When I apply myself to things like that, it such a great opportunity you just become passionate about it!
“It’s quite a challenge because you’ve got to reflect on the interpretation of Australia and you’ve got to translate that on a dress which could be 150cm long, so it’s like your canvas to work on.”
Mr Chetcuti, who is Mackay born and bred, says you don’t need to live in a fashion capital to be inspired to create beautiful clothes.
“My design was inspired by the Great Barrier Reef and the Whitsunday area.
“The Great Barrier Reef is one of the world’s seven natural wonders so I think that’s pretty amazing.”
The dress is made of pure silk and chiffon and incorporates feathers, shells and jewels to symbolise the colour and life found in the reef. He says the bottom of the gown was inspired by sea anemone.
“I was fired up by the chance to win and have one of Australia’s most beautiful women seen wearing a little piece of Mackay by a billion viewers worldwide!”
Jason Chetcuti will headline the Carmichael Motors Mercedes-Benz Towsnville Fashion Festival, October 24-27.