Opera Recycles at Couture Fashion Week
In the spirit of New York Fashion Week, Azalea and I sought out to find eco-friendly designers to watch. This proved to be a difficult task. It turns out there aren't many designers focused on sustainable fashion ... yet. But we did find Opera Recycles.
Opera Recycles is a recycling initiative launched in 2015 by Opera Carolina, the largest opera company in the Carolinas. Through this initiative, they take outdated printed material and turn it into wearable art! If you ever watched the reality T.V. show Project Runway, it's much like an unconventional materials challenge with marketing material.
We were excited to attend our first fashion show at Couture Fashion Week on September 9, 2017. We made our way to the Crowne Plaza Hotel Times Square and found ourselves amongst a few hundred people registering and waiting to be seated. We got lucky and were bumped to the first row! It was fabulous and made for some great video footage.
The lights dimmed. The Opera Recycles sign appeared. This was it.
As each piece came out, we were impressed by how each designer used paper to make a variety of texture and patterns. Paper cut into slits made fringe. Basket weave patterns turned into a beautiful trumpet dress. Colors were assembled together to resemble a stained glass window. It was amazing.
My personal favorite is this one pictured here, which I initially called the Mad Hatter, except it's more like Queen Elizabeth I. It's fun, it's renaissance, it has exaggerated hips and it comes with a sword! I'd never wear it of course.
Azalea loved this white dress with a green, white and pink paper bodice. In her opinion, it optimized couture.
A few singers from Opera Carolina came out and gave an outstanding performance in the middle of the fashion show. I noticed a few audience members' faces light up with excitement. It was nice break while still showing off the talent of Opera Carolina.
Check out the show in the two videos below! Which one is your favorite?