Recycled Fashions Come Out of the Trash Heap and Onto the Runway

By Kevin Spear
Orlando Sentinel.

Models strutted down the runway in outfits tailored from fishing line, citrus bags, hammered strips of beer cans and garbage bags.

This fashion show featured what’s called haute trash, trash walking and trashion, and it was all for a good cause: Keep Orlando Beautiful.

“I wanted to make something beautiful out of something in our daily lives,” said Krystol Pineda, who attends the International Academy of Design & Technology in Orlando, Fla., and took five weeks to dye and sew used mops into surprising elegance.

The Saturday event was not a novel concept.

The California-based Haute Trash Artists Collaborative has been putting on such shows for 20 years and is getting ready for one in Missouri.

“Junk to Funk” in Portland creates avant-garde fashion out of trash to “get people to think differently about waste.”

“Trashion usually refers to ‘making something from nothing’ for aesthetic purposes, not for practical use,” Wikipedia states.

Jody Buyas, coordinator of Keep Orlando Beautiful, a non-profit program administered by the city, said the Trash 2 Trends show came out of brainstorming for a fundraising theme.

A staffer recalled a similar event in South Carolina.

“It brings together art, fashion, recycling and the environment,” Buyas said.

Marcy Singhaus, a longtime designer of theatrical costumes in Orlando, had her pattern “in my head” to assemble scraps bedazzled with sequins, rhinestones and beads.

Her model for Trash 2 Trends is brother-in-law and actor Sam Singhaus done up in his alter-ego character of Miss Sammy.

Marie Stevens featured electronic waste.

She collected old CDs for weeks and now has “Oh, wow, a lot! Hundreds.”

After softening them in hot water, she cuts the discs to shape and glues or sews them into a fish-scale pattern for a futuristic, fairy tale impression.

“I hope it looks really cool on the runway, but it’s not something you would wear unless don’t want to sit down,” Stevens said.

Kelly-Anne Salazar actually aimed to create discomfort.

She worked with electronic cables, trash bags, plastic bottles and acrylic paint to convey “frenzy” and “suffocation,” and how technology flows “through our veins like a virus.”

Lisa Rosario put glam into recycling cardboard.

She peeled apart boxes to get to their corrugated insides, which she painted to come out like leather and stitched onto muslin to create a two-piece ensemble.

Kyla Swanberg scissored open hundreds of soda and beer cans, cut them into strips and subdued their sharp edges and bends with a mallet.

In her studio, she is weaving the hammer-dimpled shapes with thin aluminum wire into a dress.

“Recycling needs to be trendy,” Swanberg said.

“When I go to friends’ homes and they say ‘we don’t recycle,’ I’m like, really?”

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