IN the past, our national costumes have been called a “national joke” and a “travesty”, which may be why our current Miss Universe Australia feared the worst before her gown was unveiled.
Francesca Hung, who will fly to Bangkok on Wednesday for the Miss Universe finale, said considering what previous Australian beauty pageant contestants have worn, she appears to have got off scotfree.
“I was quite nervous, but I set my expectations very low, so I was elated when I saw the finished product,” Hung said.
“When you look back and type in national costumes for Australia in Google, it is a mess.
“So I am counting my lucky stars and I think my outfit will be one of the most beautiful.”
The wattle yellow gown contains 20m of silk organza, each piece individually cut, and hand dyed to achieve a natural blend of colours. Designer Nicola Yeung said the gown was inspired by Australia’s unique flora.
Ms Hung, a university graduate, said she also feared sabotage after hearing stories of Miss Universe contestants stealing other girls’ dresses.
“I am scared. I need to put a nanny cam in the room,” she said.
She hopes to be the next Jennifer Hawkins in terms of taking out the crown and will capitalise on the exposure and pursue a media career.