Students repurpose recycled materials into art, fashion designs

TEMECULA – The Annual Recycled Art & Fashion Show in Temecula, sponsored by Hines Mazda/Suburu and produced by Lady Jane Productions, celebrated its third successful year on April 26 at Monte De Oro WInery and Vineyard.

Despite inclement weather, more than 400 people attended the event to applaud the 40 individual models who walked the runway wearing wildly creative, eco-friendly fashions.

Designers and models worked together to repurpose clothing into personal fashion expressions with a theatrical flair. The Paul Mitchell School contributed all hair and makeup artistry for the models.

Held in honor of Earth Day 2014, this event raises awareness of the need to protect our environment for future generations. Blending creativity and environmental concern with an educational fundraiser, this event raised $500 to benefit the art program at Mt. San Jacinto College. 

More than half of the designers and models who presented are students from the community college, who competed with regional designers and artists.  

The following designs received awards for “Innovative Use of Recycled Material”, “Meaningful Message” and “Most Original Design.” 

Mt. San Jacinto College student Dennis Armatis designed and modeled “Bud Knight” a suit of armor made entirely from Budweiser beer packaging. His dramatic air battle on the runway left a lasting impression on the judges. 

Jan Cowles, a professional model, designer and dancer, moved on the runway with fluid grace as she modeled her own design “Simply a Maize zing.” Her many layered dress with hair ornament was crafted entirely from natural corn husks.

The third award for original design went to the design team of Antionette Valdespino, Tammy Marine and Elizabeth Hamerschlag for “Garden of Life,” a gorgeous gown modeled by Kailen Hamerschlag. The gown was lavishly covered in recycled silk flowers and was designed for Habitat for Humanity.

The event hosts an art gallery exhibition featuring art made from scavenged and repurposed materials. Michael Carrier received “Best of Show” for “We Are Chewing Up Our Earth” – an assemblage artwork made from an old key board, sign, and dental


Judges this year were Barbara Contreras and Tonya Randall, professionals in the fashion industry; Shezwae Powell, representing the theatre arts; and Mick Gronek and Eric Rodriguez as visual arts professionals.

The Recycled Art & Fashion Show has expanded each year and now includes three fashions designed by Menifee Middle School students who won 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes at their own school’s April 10 Recycled Fashion Show. These include student designers and models Ily Galdu, Lila Sihgn, Kodee Crouser, Isiah Blake and Justine Wagner.

For information on submitting entries for next year’s event, contact Jane Laskin at [email protected], (951) 440-3574.

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