Runway re-purposed 2016 fashion show
They say you can’t go home again. But I did. That is I returned to the town I called home when I first moved to America almost 9 years ago. Why? Well my step-son still lives there and it was his birthday Sunday and also to attend and cover a fashion show. But wait a minute you say, you remember that I lived in a very small town back then. It’s true, it was small but it also had a lot going on for it’s size! Known as the Runway Re-purposed Fashion Show it’s been held every February for 8 years now in Howell, Michigan. This show is a little bit different than most others you may have attended. First, this is a unique, eco-friendly fashion design competition. Second, there’s that Re-purposed part. This means that each designer needs to use at least 70% of the recycled clothing and materials that were donated by the local residents and businesses. As you can see from the photo below, on the screen behind the runway, this designer is showing the recycled clothes they picked to create their fashion masterpiece. Third, this event is a fundraiser. The money collected from entrants and the audience goes to help renovate the Howell Opera House. This building’s secret past had been hidden away for years by, of all things, a hardware store before some local history buffs discovered it and let people know that a buried treasure was right in the middle of their town. Ever since they’ve been finding ways to raise funds for repairing the structure which was built in 1881.
This program is near to my heart for many reasons. As I mentioned, I lived in this small but very nice and charming town for 5 years. How nice is it? The kind of place where strangers will say hi when they see each other on the street. Neighbors ask how you’re doing and really mean it. These same neighbors will help clean the snow from your sidewalk or cut grass in front of your home if they see you didn’t get the chance to do it. We had so many neighborhood parties, BBQs and gatherings. But the most important reason is, I entered the very first and second years of this competition.
You may recall I love fashion design and always dreamed of being a fashion designer. So when we first heard of this program I thought it was a perfect outlet for me to push myself and learn more English. I will dig into my photo archives later so I can show you my two design entries. I guess that means you have to come back again to read more this Friday and next Monday. But then, that was probably your plan anyway!
This year the theme was Hollywood Then and Now. This show has gotten bigger every year and for the 2016 competition there were more than 70 designers who entered their creations.
There were several age and skill categories starting with Young Beginner Designs and then Beginner Student Designs. Here are some of the cute looks from them.
After a brief intermission the second part of the show featured Beginner Adult Design, Avant-Garde Design and Ambassador Models who showed off some winning outfits from previous years looks. Here are a few of my favorites below.
After another short break the highlight of the afternoon came with the Advanced Designer entrants. I have to say some of the outfits looked so professionally made it was hard to believe they started with those recycled clothes and reused materials. All the designers were so creative. Here are some that really made my heart skip a beat. To see all the people that came to watch, the volunteers that put in their time and effort to help run the show, and the contestants that worked hard to make their creative vision come true, made me very proud of my little town. And happy that I can use my blog to help spread the word.
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