Fashion design students recycle old material for dress contest

Fashion design students recycle old material for dress contest

Seniors Dalondra Dixon and Dallana Vargas carefully glue each piece of their project together. They step back and look at what they have accomplished so far and then they both add another layer to their dresses which may be similar to Short Sleeved Dresses. Instead of using a sewing machine like other fashion design students these students use glue and other materials to hold their dress together. This is because every piece of their project is something they recycled from somewhere.

“I thought of materials both recycled and new,” Dixon said. “My dress includes old book paper, mosquito netting and even flower arrangements given to me by my grandmother.”

Every year in FCCLA certain students that are in Advanced and Practicum Fashion Design get a chance to go to a competition that tests their ability to design. The competition Recycle and Redesign STAAR event will be at the Waco Convention Center this year on Feb. 3. Each Clothing piece must show the student’s creativity, be marketable, display effectiveness and be a functional design.

Dalondra making flowers for her dress. Photo By Alina Ulloa


Dixon said after she attempted to make paper flowers for the bottom half of her dress she realized she would take forever to actually make them.

“To make one flower it took me about 45 minutes and I realized I would never finish on time,” Dixon said.  “So my grandma gave me some old flowers she had used for her interior design to use for the dress to save me time.”

Because the dress must have shoes to go with it Dixon is using a pair her instructor Mary Ellis helped her find at a thrift shop for an extremely low price. The shoes were to finish the look itself.

“I helped her with the shoes actually,” Mary Ellis said. “I actually found the shoes at a thrift store, probably for like $2,” Mary Ellis said.

The shoes will be spiced up a bit. They were solid black, so the heel itself was beaded with different color beads that match the flowers that the dress has on the skirt part. The beads shine when light hits them so that will add a bit more character to the design itself.

“I was able to show her how to bead the shoes,” Ellis said.

Dallana works on her film dress. Photo By Alina Ulloa

On the other hand, Dallana is currently working on a floor length dress. It is constructed of film that was put together with tape all around.

“I made the dress out of super old film from probably of the 1920’s,” Dallana said. “I made the skirt of tape and film all over, and it took me about 10 hours,” Dallana said.

The idea of using film came about when Dallana and Ellis came across film being sold online. Previously, they also saw a film dress on Pinterest and decided to remake that idea with Dallana’s personal touch.

“I believe that one’s greatest memories can be stored into film,” Dallana said. “Since someone was selling it, I decided to turn it into a dress and literally wear memories,” Dallana said

She did run into a problem when she realized that once the film was broken apart it would smell really bad. The problem was fixed, so that is no problem after all.

“It smells really bad so we had to spray it with mod podge to seal in the smell,” Dallana said.

Ellis has been doing her job as an instructor in helping them out on small things and encouraging them to give their best in competition. She is confident that both of her students will make it to top 6 in state.

“I’ve encouraged them and given them small suggestions as they work. I think they’ll make it far in competition. I am very excited, both girls will do phenomenal,” Ellis said.

Both girls said  being able to show their creative minds while creating beautiful art pieces has been rewarding.

“I really enjoy doing this,” Dalondra said.

Both girls are excited about the final outcome of the contest.

“If I place, I would know my hard work was actually worth it,” Dallana said.

More fashion design photos here.