2020 has been another hugely successful year for Junk Kouture in Our Lady’s Bower. The Western Regional Finals resulted in three Bower designs going forward to the Grand Final. Unfortunately, the postponed live final in the 3 Arena was to succumb to Covid restrictions. But not to worry, competition organisers have walked the walk and exemplified their own resourcefulness through the holding of regional photoshoots and filming sessions. Our three teams travelled with Art teacher and Junk Kouture mentor Mrs Kelly to Gloucester House, Co Offaly on November 24th. There, they had the use of the bridal suite to get camera-ready before a 30 minute shoot. This will then be edited down to a 30 second clip which will make up this year’s Grand Final performances, to be aired on RTE Player later this month.

“Wooden it be nice” if people understood what fast fashion is doing to our environment, if everyone acted for the good of the globe and If we all worked harder to upcycle what we already have? This is the message Elizabeth Fitzpatrick, Ciara Lough and Lara Welton are attempting to spread through their design. The girls used veneer wood as their main component. They used a variety of techniques to get the desired look, such as weaving on the bodice and curling on the skirt. Their headpiece and shoes were inspired by the parallel practices in architecture and fashion, creating a sculptured look.

“Rushing Around” by Natasha Keenan is inspired by nature and the rushes of the wetlands in particular. The rushes were collected in a grassland close to her home. Natasha was inspired by Celtic design and created intricate spiral patterns to form her dress. Her shoes showcased dozens of miniature St Brigid’s crosses.

Lucy Denby and Jessica Henson’s design “Get with the Programme” was inspired by 2020 – the year for greater visibility of ladies sport. The dress was made from 2019 LGFA All Ireland Final programmes. The glossy programmes ensured a vibrant and colourful finish to the design. The girls used old football boots for their shoes, with leaf shaped programmes attached which gave a fantastic winged effect. The headpiece, an old football covered in and surrounded by folded programmes finished the concept off wonderfully.

We look forward to tuning in to watch the Grand Final and cheer on our girls. Well done to all and thank you to Mrs Kelly who has been a constant source of support and encouragement for the girls. This school year has seen her working with students at both ends of the competition, as our TYs are currently creating their mood boards and gathering raw materials for the 2021 competition.