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Upcycled Fashion Show 2024
19th March 2024

The 11th annual Upcycled Fashion Show took place on Thursday 14th March. A record number of students participated and we saw over 50 outfits modelled by pupils from LC1 to SFC1.

The competition showcases the incredible ingenuity and creative vision of our students. The outcomes reflect many hours of hard work, careful planning, persistent problem-solving and productive collaboration.

We saw imaginative and inspired use of a huge range of unwanted items; food wrappers, bin bags and newspaper became voluminous skirts and structured corsets, fabrics from soft toys, high-street cloth bags and dog food packaging were turned into impactful dresses and coats, old jeans were converted into dramatic skirts and unwanted ties became striking tops. Hundreds of pieces of paper were salvaged from College recycling bins and artfully folded into origami flowers to adorn polythene trousers, plastic bag coats and bubble wrap tops. Characterful handbags, stunning headpieces and sparkling jewellery were created from tinfoil, coffee cans, ring pulls and coat hangers. Accessories even stretched to a sinister coke-can gas mask and a very authentic-looking cardboard gun!  

LC3 Textiles students also showcased their recent classwork, presenting nearly 20 upcycled men’s work shirts which they had transformed into a collection of very stylish and unique garments including summery dresses, fitted tops and pleated skirts. Students were tasked with creating a wearable, durable garment, with the added challenge of thinking inventively about how to utilise existing components. They used a combination of imagination to repurpose collars and cuffs into waistbands and belts, reconfigured armholes and sleeves, reversed shirts from front to back and repositioned pockets, buttons and button holes.

The atmosphere was wonderful. The enthusiastic audience clapped and cheered throughout, with the House Trashion entries, unsurprisingly, receiving the loudest screams! All the models presented their garments with real confidence, personality and flair.

The judges had some incredibly difficult decisions to make. We were very fortunate to secure Lucinda Popp (Head of Apparel at Bamford), Sarah Joran (Founder of underwear B Corp Y.O.U) and Anita Griffin (a Textile Technologist with a long career in industry) as our judges. Lucinda kindly spent the day at CLC talking to students about her training and career in the sustainable fashion industry.  

Trashion category

The winners of the Trashion category were Penny, Claire and Elizabeth (LC2), who created an ingenious outfit comprising of a 1960s style checkerboard mini-skirt woven from disused bin bags and foam packaging, plus a top made from garden membrane that transformed to become a long over-skirt. They also created a handbag using a biscuit tin and a chic hat which was crocheted from fabric bags. It was topped with a veil that had once been a bag for fruit! All the elements were decorated using incomplete and unusable packs of playing cards.

The Upcycling category

The Upcycling category was won by Tosin (LC3) with a very striking, sculptural outfit, reminiscent of Yoruba bridal wear, that drew on Tosin’s own cultural references. Comprising of a pencil skirt and bodice that were crocheted from over 80 disused plastic bags, this stunning outfit showcased Tosin’s immense patience as well as her skills!

House Trashion category

St Austin’s was this year’s winner of the House Trashion category. They created a beautiful billowing white overcoat from plastic bags, decorated with handmade flowers. This concealed a brilliantly engineered cardboard corset and pleated newspaper mini-skirt, with the spines of CD cases used expertly to create boning for the corset. This was a real team effort and showed real thought about the inherent properties of their raw materials and how these could be used to create structure and form as well as visual impact.

Huge congratulations to everyone who participated in this year’s competition – I can’t wait to see what comes down the runway next year!

Miss Brandon, Bayshill Housemistress

You can view more pictures from the ‘Upcycled Fashion Show 2024’ by visiting Zenfolio.