Designers present recycled looks at ‘Trashion’ show Saturday

The show’s fundraising supports Bloomington’s Center for Sustainable Living. Jeanne Leimkuhler, the center’s treasurer, organized the event.

The evening had two fashion shows: the refashion show, where designers displayed outfits made from old clothing items, and the trashion show, where designers constructed clothing from trash.

A silent auction, featuring refashioned and trashioned clothing, accessories and home decorations, was another source of revenue for the CSL.

Leimkuhler, who designed two outfits for the trashion show, said she got the idea from similar shows in Los Angeles and Portland, Ore.

“I think I was maybe Googling ‘recycling fashion’ or something,” Leimkuhler said. “It just seemed like a perfect match for the CSL to promote sustainability and have a show that was really fun.”

IU junior and refashion model Alanna Ewert walked the runway in a bright red pencil skirt made from old pants and a vintage-looking light brown halter vest.

Her hair and makeup, done by Hair Arts Academy in Bloomington, took about one hour.

She said for her, backstage is the most stressful part of the show.

“People want it to go smoothly but it doesn’t always go that way,” Ewert said. “Lots of designers are talking to their models to give them more encouragement because it’s nerve-racking.”

Ewert said she was nervous before walking the runway, but managed to make the audience laugh with her spunky posing.

Ewert modeled her sister Alyssa’s design, who co-designed with IU students Lauren Osmon and Jackie Cottrell for an apparel merchandising project.

They designed the outfit in three weeks and spent a few hours searching Goodwill for reusable clothes.

Alyssa Ewert used her sister as her model for the Trashion show last year, but it was Osmon’s first time seeing her design on a runway.

“It was really exciting,” Osmon said. “When she came out I was like, ‘Oh my gosh!’”

Leimkuhler works on the 10-person committee to select runway outfits. She said they aren’t too picky about outfits because the event focuses on community involvement.

Leimkulher said she was impressed by the quality of designs  for the show.

“That’s really the goal of the show, is to get people thinking creatively about stuff that we normally so quickly throw in the trash,” she said.

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