The 6,000 Leaves Dress

In eastern China, four university students sought out to show that a stunning dress does not need to cost an arm and a leg. It can be made yourself for no cost. All you’ll need is plant leaves, and a whole lot of them.

Photographs of their beautiful plant leaf dress have gone viral throughout Chinese social media platforms. People can’t get enough of the dress and these creative students who used an entire 6,000 leaves, thread and most importantly, an impressive amount of patience and perseverance.

The team of student designers consisted of two boys and two girls. They came up with the idea while trying to come up with an idea for a school project for the Animal and Plant Specimen Contest.

At the same time, people were in awe about a dress worn by Fan BingBing, a Chinese actress. One of the team members then suggested that they attempt to recreate the dress out of leaves from plants. The teacher, although doubted their success, approved the idea.

The students did their research and carefully thought out the design, and then went off to collect the thousands of leaves with their own hands.  With some leaves not even available in their campus area, they traveled to Tianzhu Mountain to collect the specific leaves they needed.

In order to make sure that their leaves would not rot or shrivel, they boiled them in a solution made from sodium carbonate solution and alkai for two hours. This made it easier to remove the flesh, and left them with only what is known as the leaf’s skeleton.

The process way a lot more complex than it sounds on paper. The students experienced great difficulty in perfecting the proportions of the solution and ensuring that the boiling time was just right without causing damage to the leaves.  But with help from their teacher they managed to come up a formula that worked.

The students were only able to work on their project outside of school hours and in turn took them an entire four months to create. But all of their hard work paid off when they finally got to show off the dress to everyone.

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