Students make vogue costumes out of garbage
THE SANTA CLARA
February 4, 2016
Models will be strutting their stuff while draped in access cards, bottle caps and candy bar wrappers at the 6th Annual Eco Fashion Show in the de Saisset Museum. Beyond highlighting recycled style, the event will emphasize educating others on social responsibility.
“It’s to celebrate creativity and participation in an alternative movement to big fashion,” said Alec Kwo, student engagement intern at the Center for Sustainability. “It’s a fun way to get people to start thinking about issues that might not have come up in an academic setting.”
Hosted free of charge by the Center for Sustainability, there will be a preview of the trailer for the documentary “True Cost,” and a screening of videos detailing the harmful effects of toxic waste and the amount of resources it takes to create clothes.
“What we’re doing this year that we haven’t done before is we’re trying to highlight social responsibility, like worker’s rights,” Kwo said. “In the past, it’s only been about environmental sustainability, but the university’s definition of sustainability encompasses economic and social justice so we’re trying to shed more light on that.”
The center has planned for a clothing rack exhibit where “price tags” will reveal the truth about the sustainability (or lack thereof) of popular brands worn around campus.
“It’s a way to get educated about clothes,” Kwo said. “Clothes are a necessity and the impact of you buying a clothing item is not something you think about. It’s important to have that perspective on clothing purchases. The true cost is much more than the five to fifty dollars you’re going to pay.”
In the past, faculty members and staff have participated in the event, but this year, 12 student participants have signed up to have their original designs showcased on the runway. The designers must adhere to a few guidelines such as not purchasing any new materials—a restriction that bolsters creativity and the event’s message
“Anything you would normally throw away, in any sense, they were encouraged to accumulate items like that,” Kwo said. “We also asked people to incorporate common Benson items like thin film plastic, plastic silverware, energy bar wrappers and compostable to go containers.”
The event’s panelists will include Father Jack Treacy, students Ryan Quakenbush and Justin Wojcik and alumnus Alex Garcia.
Although the panelists will offer commentary of the fashion, there will be no official winner. Instead, the runway serves as a platform for equal praising of eco-friendly creativity.
The show itself won’t be long, but there will be other activities lined up for those who attend the event. A live DJ and a jazz combo will perform and a henna station and a photo booth will be set up. A huge part of the event is the do-it-yourself craft table, where recycled materials will be made available for those who want to try their hand at recycled fashion.
“Come see the creativity of some awesome people and leave with a new lens about a choice you make every day that you probably haven’t thought about before,” Kwo said. “They make really incredible pieces and I think people need to have sobering thoughts like that because it’s a way to broaden your perspective.”
Contact Perla Luna at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (408) 554-4852.