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Students design dresses for Freedom by Fashion show

October 29, 2013

designer-dress
Designer: Kelly Ferguson

Students in Tina Marks’ Crafting Sustainable Community class have created dresses from Fair Trade fabrics that will be modeled during a community runway show this weekend.

The Central Missouri Stop Human Trafficking Coalition sponsors the Freedom by Fashion show, and this year it features an Unmasking Modern Day Slavery theme to raise awareness. The event is 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.Sunday, Nov. 3, at the Plaza Event Center.

Stephens’ models will join others in the community to walk the runway and showcase a variety of garments.

Marks’ students were tasked with creating upscale designer dresses using fabrics created using sustainable working practices such as fair wages and safe working conditions. Those fabrics tend to be more expensive, but this year, students were able to purchase Fair Trade fabric from a senior who used it for her senior collection.

“Normally, we’d go out and buy fair trade fabrics, but she already had quite a bit leftover,” Marks said.

All the material is printed cotton that was hand made in Ghana.

For her garment, Junior Kelly Ferguson matched a short-sleeved solid top with a patterned elongated skirt. The idea was to emote a feeling of female power and strength, she said.

“I am also hoping to express that Fair Trade textiles can look modern and fabulous,” she wrote in a description of the outfit.

Marks’ students also used re-purposed denim to create pieces for the show. Junior Jessica Yuhouse created a denim dress from a pair of old Levi’s jeans, and Senior Melinda Thiedig designed a dog vest from recycled denim.

This project is part of the Breaking the Pattern initiative in the School of Fashion and Design, an initiative that raises awareness for various causes.

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