‘Recycled’ fashion show at Queens Center Mall

To commemorate the celebration of Earth Day on April 22, Queens Center Mall in Elmhurst hosted the second annual “Recycle the Runway” fashion show, giving four high school students the chance to create a garment of their choice from every day recycled materials in just an hour.

Materials such as bubble wrap, MetroCards, potato chip bags and garbage bags were used by the four female students: Ana Gonzalez, a senior at High School of Art & Design; Kareesa Fraiser, also from the High School of Art & Design; Ashley Tribblet, from Urban Assembly Institute of Math and Science for Women; and Angelia Lin, from the High School of Fashion Industries.

The first place prize, which included a $500 Give Green gift card sponsored by American Express, went to Lin, a sophomore. When her name was announced, Lin had nothing but smiles.

“Chips are my favorite food, so it was easy to choose my materials,” Lin said. “My teacher Mrs. Davis is the one who really inspired me.”

Lin designed a short flapper style dress constructed out of potato chip snack bags with a single shoulder poof and a swooped neck line.

Dawn Simon, Queens Center senior manager of marketing, and the four other judges concluded that during the process it became difficult to choose a clear cut winner.

“It was difficult during the judging process because all of [the dresses] look amazing and wonderful,” said Simon. “We’re all just very excited to have seen what these wonderful women had in store for us.”

Second place went to Gonzalez, who received a $200 Give Green gift card, third place went to Fraiser, who received a $100 gift card, and fourth place went to Tribblet, who received a $50 gift card.

As students worked vigorously throughout the hour, a spring and summer fashion demonstration went on. Queens Center retailers, including JCPenny, Sephora, Afaze, Papaya and H&M, presented their collections for the upcoming season, all in honor of Earth Day.

City Councilmember Daniel Dromm, who was a judge for the first time, was happy to celebrate Earth Day in such an insightful and creative way.

“We’re here to highlight [taking] care of the environment and our waste,” said Dromm. “We hope to create fashionable art and show an appreciation to recycle using an out of the box way. One person’s trash is another person’s treasure.”

All the fashions will be displayed for the following week in front of Guest Services on the second floor of the mall.

More from Around New York