A fashion show which brought charity shop chic to the catwalks as well as latest designs from reused clothing and recycled materials attracted a packed house at the weekend.
The Choose2Reuse fashion extravaganza, which was held at the Royal Hall Harrogate last Saturday evening (Jan 22), drew a 700-strong audience to view a range of fabulous collections from charity shops or upcycled from discarded materials.
The show was organised by the York and North Yorkshire Waste Partnership. The partnership includes North Yorkshire County Council, City of York Council and the seven district and borough councils. Its aim was to combine fun and fashion with practical solutions to help people save money and the environment.
The extravaganza, which followed last summer’s sell-out Choose2Reuse fashion show at York racecourse, was hosted by Dick Strawbridge MBE of Scrap Heap Challenge and It’s Not Easy Being Green. Entertainment was provided by Any Dream Will Do singer Rob McVeigh and the North Yorkshire County Youth Dance Company.
The show demonstrated how unwanted clothing, either worn straight from a charity shop or redesigned and upcycled into something new, can be as desirable and fashionable as brand new garments from a high street store.
The Harrogate event featured a wide range of partners including local colleges, charities, designers and crafts people.
Awards were given for the best collections in three categories:
- Harrogate College students in BA Hons Applied Creative Design in Fashion, Marketing and Retail won the best school/college collection for upcycled bridal wear with a ‘nature meets rock’ theme.
- Kate Horsefield won the best designer collection with her clothing made from recycled materials such as paper, aluminium cans, plastic bags and other materials.
- The British Heart Foundation in Harrogate won the best charity shop collection with its “paparazzi” theme.
There were also displays of reusable furniture and stalls where charities, local crafts people, businesses and designers who produce items from reusable or recycled materials, exhibited and sold their wares.
County councillor Clare Wood, the chairman of the waste partnership said: "This extravaganza was a thoroughly enjoyable event, full of creative and original ideas. It demonstrated very effectively how people can be at the height of fashion without great expense and reduce waste at the same time. Our last Choose2Reuse fashion show in York was a complete sell-out. Now this larger, even more professional affair has attracted an even larger audience, proving there is huge interest out there in upcycled and charity shop fashion.”
Feedback from members of the public has been overwhelmingly positive with many comments such as - ”A really fun and inspiring night out” ; “I’m encouraged and enthused” ; “Excellent evening, would definitely shop at a charity shop now”.