Talented Bexhill College students owned the catwalk wearing fabulous fairtrade pieces they designed and made up themselves.
The fashion show was a highlight of Fairtrade fortnight campaigning in Bexhill and a showcase which included clothing from ethically-produced fashion labels and a collection from former student turned successful designer Zahra Rose.
The sixth annual Bexhill Fairtrade Fashion Show by Bexhill College with Bexhill Fairtrade Group was described as the best event yet, with well over 200 people watching the Show.
Karen Hucker, Bexhill College Principal said: “The Fashion Show is a fantastic opportunity to showcase the work of our many talented students. We are immensely proud of the exceptional quality of designs they produced and also that we are able to raise awareness of a worthwhile cause such as Fairtrade.”
Bexhill College’s A Level Textiles Technology and BTEC Art and Design students created clothes from recycled materials including paper and bubble wrap, which fitted in perfectly with the ethical theme of the evening. Their innovative designs were followed on the catwalk by garments from Fairtrade fashion labels People Tree, Nomads, Epona and Brighton-based Fairtrade shop LoveThatStuff.
Jack Doherty, Chairman of Bexhill Fairtrade Group said: “Our sixth Fairtrade Ethical and Recycle Fashion Show exemplified some of the best in design, make and quality, both from the students and the Fairtrade suppliers. It was a thoroughly enjoyable and uplifting evening.”
Adam Garner from the Fairtrade Foundation was one of two guest speakers and he called on the audience to question where the clothing they buy comes from, whether the producers are getting a fair deal and what the conditions are for factory workers. Over 50 fairly traded cotton garments and accessories were exhibited which carried the ‘No Sweat Shop’ label. This label ensures the people who make your clothes have been fairly treated.
Recently launched Fairtrade school uniform company Kool Skools also had garments on show. Jack Doherty said: “I would like to issue a challenge to all schools in Bexhill to have at least one Fairtrade item of school uniform in the next three years. Unfair cotton uniforms are unjust and force children into the field away from school to provide cheap uniforms for our children at school - where’s the fairness there?”
Returning Bexhill College student Zahra Rose has been busy this year working on designs for Miss Selfridge as well as being commissioned to design the dress for Miss England. The College was delighted to welcome her back this year and see the latest of her exciting creations.
To create the full cat walk effect the models from Bexhill College, as well models of the Fairtade garments from St Richards, Bexhill High and Pestalozzi, had their hair styled by the College’s excellent Hairdressing department and Bexhill-based hair salon Aradia, with make-up provided by Neals Yard.
Emily Alcock, Textiles Technology teacher at Bexhill College said: “We were really proud of the students for creating such a high standard of designs. They all took on the challenge and came up with some breath-taking clothes from recycled materials.”