January 25, 2011

Junk to Funk: "Transformation"

“Imagine a world in which there was no such thing as trash; that everything that we ‘threw away’ was perceived as a valuable resource…What if the ultimate measure of coolness was how little you bought and how much you creatively reused?”

Portland-based trash fashion organization Junk to Funk asks these questions, and through a combination of performance, contemporary fashion, and sustainability education tries to inspire answers. From catwalk to classroom, Junk to Funk provides audiences young and old new ways of conceptualizing sustainability, reuse and consumption by creating, teaching about and displaying garments and accessories made out of ‘trash.’

Best known for its annual “Recycled Fashion Show Contest,” Junk to Funk has led the city in showcasing the most sustainable fashion around—trashion. The organization has a solid community and political following (Mayor Sam Adams again expressed his appreciation for Junk to Funk’s eye on sustainability at Portland Fashion Week 2010) and regularly features garments by very talented local designers such as Jen Lamastra, Rio Wrenn, and Ruth Waddy (image at left by OnScreen Imaging, design by Ruth Waddy at Pre-Soiled Couture). Junk to Funk designers assemble their wears almost entirely from recycled or reclaimed materials, such as vintage shoulder pads, Oregonian newspaper bags, bicycle tubes and used coffee filters.

Turning away from 4 years of high profile, in-your-face style production, Junk to Funk has recently unveiled new directions in programming. The reconfigured Trashion Collective will integrate trashion into education (at local schools and a summer camp), into business practice (by offering to custom design a garment from a business’s waste), and into the private sector (with opportunities to rent Junk to Funk garments). Junk to Funk’s upcoming 5th anniversary party, called “Transformation,” on February 5th, will both celebrate Junk to Funk’s legacy as Portland’s largest trash fashion show and reveal Junk to Funk’s plan of action for the future. Fourteen new garments from Junk to Funk’s “House of Trashion” will be showcased up close and personal in a gallery installation.

What: Junk to Funk’s
Anniversary Party

When: Saturday, February 5th, 7-11pm

Where: Boothster, 521 NE Davis St.

If you missed Junk to Funk’s fashion shows in year’s past, there are still opportunities throughout the year to see the garments, at Junk to Funk events such as “Transformation,” nonprofit fundraisers like SCRAP’s Incognito or in installations in places such as the Portland International Airport (see image above right from Junk to Funk). You can also check out photos and video from past shows on Junk to Funk’s website.

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