PHOTOS BY FERGAL MCGRATH
KAROLINA Sedyte, a student at Magh Ene College, Bundoran, has made it through to the All Ireland final of this year’s Junk Kouture competition for the second year in a row.
Junk Kouture is a national competition for second level students in Ireland and Northern Ireland which challenges teenagers to create high-end wearable fashion from everyday junk that would normally find its way into the bin.
The competition aims to inspire and ignite passion in these teenagers while at the same time subtly educating them about the importance of recycling and reusing waste for the good of the planet. In the last three years, Junk Kouture has established itself as the premier fashion competition for teenagers throughout Ireland.
This year’s grand final will take place in The Bord Gais Theatre, Dublin, May 2, where Bundoran student Karolina will present her outfit Electric Blue.
To create this fashion outfit Karolina used wires for the shorts and bodice. She used recycled woven laundry bags to create the train for my piece.
Some of the wires were spray painted. The colour scheme and design patterns in her piece are inspired by Vincent Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’.
She also said she is inspired by current fashion trends, as well as designers such as Basil Soda. For Karolina the words ‘Haute Couture’ stand for big, exciting, eye-catching and originality and this is the reason she created a large train to the back.
For months she had been collecting wires and asking friends, family, as well as my neighbours for scrap wires. The wires she used are from a pick and mix of wires from computer, TV cables and different gadgets she had gathered. She then used different techniques to shape the wire, such as, twisting, swirling and braiding.
Junk Koutoure is launched annually in September to coincide with the teenagers returning to school. Information packs are sent to every secondary school in Ireland.
A maximum of three students can work on each outfit and must be submitted by January 31 the following year to qualify. The rules stipulate that the outfit must be made from reworked trash or other used materials that are beyond their intended purpose.
The next step involved the judges whittling the entrants down to just 80 outfits per region – north, south, east and west.
These chosen outfits are the semi-finalists and subsequently the students must choreograph a performance to showcase their outfit on the catwalk in one of four regional theatres.
They had 90 seconds to impress on the catwalk and if successful the 20 highest scoring outfits progress to the highest scoring outfits progress to the grand final.
The grand final then takes place with the 20 finalists from each region battling it out on the catwalk to be crowned champion and walk away with over €20,000 worth in prizes.
Karolina was successful in getting through to the grand final in 2013 and said it was a fantastic experience and she is over the moon to be competing again this year.
Her dress from 2013 was also chosen to showcase at the Belfast Fashion Week. Voting takes place today, April 14. We wish Karolina the very best of luck in the final.
You can vote for Karolina by going to www.facebook/ERPIreand or go directly to the Junk Kouture website.
Zara McDaid can be contacted on Facebook, search ‘Zara Mc Daid Art’, www.zaramcdaid-art.blogspot.ie or e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org