Last weekend, I headed a few hours south to Richmond, Virginia for a fashion show. It had been awhile since I'd made a visit, and I was happy to be back. First, to see the wonderful family that I consider my "Richmond Family" or my "second family." I lived with them over the summer when I was in college, traveled with them and babysat the kids, who were 8, 7 and 1 when I started... they are now 22, 21 and 16! And second, to watch the youngest showcase her creative chops.
Izabela, who is the youngest of the kids and 16, was in a Fashion Show held at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, where each participant had to apply and were selected to showcase their design skills. After choosing a work of art from the museum, each contestant created a costume that best reflected their piece. Some were wearable and some were completely editorial, but all were created using reusable materials (think dried out, tie-dyed Clorox wipes, chicken coop wire, coffee beans, shells and Q-tips.)
A great concept, highlighted by the creativity of the 60+ middle and high school aged kids who designed and modeled their one-of-a-kind piece of wearable art. High School aged winners in categories such as Most Wearable, Best Representation of their art piece and Best Use of Reusable Materials, won a trip to NYC and those in middle school won items such as markers and other high-end art supplies.
The innovation was incredible. Each designer had to also write a statement, explaining how their look reflected the piece of art, and choose a song, to which they walked out on stage and down the red carpet runway. (We had seats right at the end of the runway and could see first hand how some of the models struggled to walk up the slanted theater aisle. They had to walk down the stairs, from a stage, and up through the middle row of seats in the theater auditorium. Some had massive shoes [think Alexander McQueen armadillo shoes] and the way the runway was positioned, they had to take short, brisk steps to make it up the runway, which made it tough to do a fun, sassy catwalk.)
The venue was beautiful and the event well organized. The pieces that won awards were highly editorial, even the costume that won "Most Wearable" was a pant/skirt ensemble, that only the most progressive of fashionable girls would wear.
Check out the photos below, for more details on the pieces.