Junk Kouture 2016

Two teams from Loreto College St. Stephen’s Green qualified for the Grand Final of the Junk Kouture Fashion Competition this year. They were chosen from over 1,000 entries to compete in the 3 Arena on 14th April. A huge well done to Kate De Búrca (model), Julia Chartienitz and Andrea McEniff who created Electric Ombré and Oonagh Fleming, Ava Smith and Lucy Creedon (model) who created Angelic Ammunition.

Junk Kouture by Julia Chartienitz

The transition year craft class, with the directing of Ms. Fynes, separated into groups to enter the 2016 Junk Kouture competition. Each group designed a dress made of recyclable materials. We used the things around us such as elastic, cardboard, corks, wires, cigarettes filters and anything else we could find. Once you had your materials, it was easy to design the silhouette and patterns of the dress although a lot of the earlier plans were completely
different from the finished product. They were redrawn constantly and most of the dresses were changed on a whim halfway through. We placed the finishing touches and submitted our photos. Four out of seven groups achieved greatness and passed into the semi- finals.

The semi- finals, held in the Helix of UCD, was a massive production. We arrived early in the morning and cornered off part the changing room for our groups. The other groups in the room looked like they were going to be hard to beat. Their outfits were extravagant and complex, but our models performed phenomenally. Then at the end of the night the judges announced that two of our groups had made it through to the finals, “Angelic Ammunition” and “Electric Ombre”. They circled the stage while the audience cheered. We were very happy with ourselves and celebrated later with a pizza party!

It was easier to prepare for the finals this time since we knew what we needed to do from our semi-final experience. We also had so much help and support in school. The dresses that had qualified needed to be touched up. “Angelic Ammunition” even changed models and refit the dress. “Electric Ombre”, my group, repainted our shoes and had to devise a complex mechanism to allow our model Kate to wear the very heavy dress for several hours at a time. The finals were held in the 3 Arena. There were thousands of people watching us and we really felt that this was our moment and we were so happy to be there. There were games, booths and a silent disco before the contest started which was loads of fun!  We also had a lot of supporters who stood up and cheered when our dresses came out!  Neither of our groups won a prize, but everyone was lively backstage and we had made amazing friends. I loved the entire competition overall and would recommend it to all transition year students!

Junk Kouture by Oonagh Fleming

It’s nearly hard to put into words how much fun the Junk Kouture Grand Final day was! We arrived in school before eight to begin our elaborate hair and make up designs. We got a taxi to the 3 Arena at eleven o’clock and spent the day backstage.  We spent the first part of the day in a dressing room getting our model, Lucy, ready. I acted as a stylist and makeup artist for the day. As my design was being featured on TV we went to a ’press call’ where lots of TV stations and newspapers filmed us and asked us questions. It was so much fun and really exciting! Shortly after this we took part in a rehearsal so we would be familiar with the catwalk. Each design has one minute on the catwalk which is actually really short. We had practiced non-stop and really enjoyed the final practice before the show. Lucy was performing to a Kanye West song that we had edited especially for the show.

As we were putting our final touches to hair and makeup, and eating the pizza Junk Kouture had given us, we were asked to do an interview on 2fm radio! We were brought to the 2fm bus and were interviewed by Eoghan Mc Dermott from The Voice. We were a bit nervous but he asked us lots of great questions and we got a chance to talk about our school, our design and what we liked about Junk Kouture. It was great being on the radio and something we might not get a chance to do again.

Despite the fact we were in the 3 Arena all day it seemed like all of a sudden it was time for the show to begin. The models waited backstage and the two teams and Ms. Fynes took our seats in the audience. We were delighted to see so many of our school friends there to support us! The show was fantastic and I loved looking at everyone else’s creations. It was an unbelievable feeling seeing the outfit I had worked on for months on stage in such a famous venue! Junk Kouture was such a fantastic experience for so many reasons. We began the project with a few vague ideas and through a process of sketching, research and sampling we created an outfit we are so proud of. This afforded us the opportunity to perform in the Helix, the 3 Arena, appear on TV3 news and 2fm radio!  It also gave us an amazing insight into the world of design and the hard work, creativity and dedication that goes into a successful project. We are delighted we got the opportunity to take part in Junk Kouture and are so thankful that our school facilitated this brilliant project.