Century students express flair for fashion

New business education class takes to the runway

Retail fashion student Kassy Murphy walks the runway during the Express Yourself! Fashion Show Challenge at Century Junior High School on Feb. 17. Murphy modeled an outfit the students created out of recycled materials. Pictured in the background are hosts Sofia Rappa and Lilia Theisen, along with model Mary Beth Johnson. (Photo by Clint Riese)

Fearless students wearing the fiercest of fashions sashayed down the runway at Century Junior High School’s Express Yourself! Fashion Show Challenge on Friday, Feb. 17.

This event, put on by ninth-graders in a new business education course taught by Stephanie Lourey, was inspired by the hit TV show ‘Project Runway.’ Students in the retail fashion course were put into design teams and given six fashion challenges.

The show opened with live mannequins posing on stage adorned in student-made outfits created from recyclable materials while recycling facts scrolled on a screen behind them. Among the innovative “Trashion Fashion” designs were an aluminum foil party dress with a special belt made from broken CDs and a miniskirt made from diapers. Guidance secretary Mary Beth Johnson modeled a cardboard mod-inspired jumper dress, while social studies teacher Ashley Wilke showed off colorful styrofoam jewelry.

Nick Reller and Jake Foss show ‘what not to wear.’ The students were selected from the audience and dressed in the outfits. (Photo by Clint Riese)

While a DJ spun music, models catwalked down the runway in today’s trendiest styles provided by Maurices of Forest Lake. Several students, including Chevelle Palomino and Hannah Nase, said their favorite part of the process was selecting and wearing the clothes from Maurices. The retail clothing store worked closely with the class throughout the planning process, and a manager and employee even attended the show. School board member Gail Theisen was also present to assist behind the scenes.

The teams were also assigned to design outfits based on popular songs and movies. The show ended with a humorous challenge in which volunteers from the crowd each modeled a fashion “don’t.”

By audience vote, the team named Petite Amie took top honors. Members included Emily Lindstrom, Abbie VanBergen, Aimee Lancaster, Taylor Hudak and Sommer Sova.

The first-time event was a hit with both participants and audience members alike.

“I loved to see that all of our hard work paid off!” said retail fashion student Holly Kundel. “It’s always nice to see something turn out well, and I’m happy that people liked it.”