This past weekend, Ripley’s, as in Ripley’s Believe It or Not! held a “Trashy Fashion Show” at their museum in St. Augustine, Florida–as in, a fashion show in which each look was made out of something you might expect to find in a trash can. As it happens, many of the looks were designed by kids still in high school–and they’re actually quite good. In fact, first place winners Amani Grant and Analise Barnard, who designed (and Barnard wore) a dress made out of coffee filters, are just 12 years old.
While the cream-colored dress, cleverly titled “High Energy,” may not have the most perfectly even hemline we’ve ever seen, it’s pretty impressive. So is the matching headband. And given the fact that someone is wearing it and it’s not falling apart, it must be at a Project Runway level of production quality at the very least. It’s certainly better than I could have done at the age of 12. Kim Kiff, a spokesperson for Ripley’s told us participants ranged in age “from five to 40.” So, why were all the winners under 18?
“We did a lot of the promotion through the schools and a lot of the participants were in art or fashion programs,” she explained. In many cases, art and fashion teachers contacted them about entering their students. We’re guessing Barnard and Grant got a lot of extra credit for their winning look. Of course, that’s not all they got. The duo won $100 for their efforts and Ripley’s bought the dress for another $100, which we’re sure more than covered the cost of the materials.
Other winning looks included a dress made out of newspaper designed by 15-year-old Kennedy Trugter and a formal, knee length gown made from used paint brushes and paper bags designed by 17-year-old Masha Sardari. Click through to see them all. We hear Ripley’s hopes to make this an annual event. In the mean time, maybe Project Runway should lower their age requirements?