Gearing up for a new experience with my students- Curbside Couture

28 11 2012

I was offered the opportunity to be a part of a unique fashion show with my students. Curbside Couture Fashion Show at the Clinton Presidential Library.  This year I have some talented and aspiring fashion designers so I jumped at the chance.  Like many art teachers, we store several items that are interesting or could be made into something creative.  We often do not have a specific purpose for the things we collect but it is just too cool to toss.

  This fashion show requires the designers to create a wearable outfit for the runway show out of recycled or up-cycled items.  BINGO!  I already had a stock of cool fabrics, plastic, paper products, cardboard, etc.  I started by tapping the few students who I knew loved designing clothing.  I have a freshman who created a runway fashion show in 8th grade so she was perfect.


I created a Pinterest board with fashion recycle examples and well known fashion designers and shared it with my” budding” designers.  Next, I fired my students up and they began by selecting models from friends or fellow artists, who would support the idea, and they began drawing.  We scheduled several dress workshops on the weekends, to pull out all the materials, and begin construction on our dresses.  My studio looked like a combination of a recycle bin and a fabric scrap mill that had exploded everywhere.  Duct tape and hot glue was our best friend.  Armed with a needle and thread, plus our imaginations, we created our gowns in all kinds of combinations. Some of my students were inspired by color,  texture, the variety of materials, or a specific style of dress.    My students set the goal to transform whatever materials they selected, to no longer appear as the original item. 


I was fortunate to have two professional fashion designers come to our last workshop to give critiques and suggestions for our dresses.  Connie Fails- fashion designer to Hilary Clinton in the 8o’s and Korto Momolu- first runner-up on “Project Runway”.  

A one of a kind experience and I loved watching my students work seamlessly with the designers on their creations.


 I have eleven students involved in the show.  We created seven runway gowns to present to the public this Sunday.  We are so excited to share with everyone all the hard work we did during the past several months. 

My students dresses will be on the runway with several other student and professional designers.  We expect 30-40 different dresses walk on the catwalk.  I will post photos of our experience soon.  Talk about a real life art experience….who knows I may be helping to develop the next great fashion designer!




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