Don’t trash your health. Upcycle with style

This fashion show puts old clothes on the runway, not in the Charlotte landfill.

Show producer Davita Galloway (right) poses with a model wearing a daring camera-inspired look. (Photos: Qcitymetro.com)


According the City of Charlotte Solid Waste Services, the average Charlotte resident generates about 1,600 pounds of garbage per year. With more than 400,000 people expected to move here in the next five years, that’s a whole lot of garbage, and city leaders say it’s bad for our health.

In an effort to encourage folks around the Qcity to reduce the amount of trash they send to the landfill each year, the city’s Solid Waste Services division sponsored an unusual kind of fashion show — one featuring outfits made of reused items.

The “Repurposed: An Upcycle Fashion Show + Auction” was held Saturday at LaCa Projects. The purpose was to raise awareness about the importance of recycling, reusing, upcycling and composting.

“We want to change the way people think about the relationship between their health and the environment,” said Denada Jackson, public information officer for City of Charlotte Solid Waste Services. “We want them to know how it’s affecting them.”

Pollution and gasses emitted from decomposing materials in landfills have been linked to a variety of chronic health problems including cancer, heart disease, stroke, kidney disease and diabetes.

“By decreasing pollution, we can improve our health,” said Jackson.

The fashion show was part of the City’s Healthy Communities program, which aims to make Charlotte healthier by diverting waste from the landfill. The initiative also includes educational games, school presentations, cooking classes, tours, and the Food Too Good To Waste Challenge.

More than 20 local designers participated in Saturday’s fashion show. The designer’s challenge was to create upcycled garments from materials found at Goodwill Industries and Value Village.

Attendees bid on the items as they hit the runway. Proceeds from the auction were donated to three local, environmentally focused organizations – Sustain Charlotte, Hip Hop Caucus and Pop Up Produce.

The City intended for the event to encourage people to consider upcycling as an option to reduce waste.

Show producer Davita Galloway, designer and co-owner of Dupp and Swat Creative Agency and Boutique, said upcycling old clothes not only reduces waste but is also a way to add personal style to your wardrobe. After all, fashion is all about self-expression, and there’s no better way to do that than by creating unique pieces.

“It’s just about being genuine,” she said. “Just go with how you feel. Get to know who you are, and get dressed based on that.”

Dessaka Lockhart of Silk Falsetto participated in Saturday’s show. She suggests that those who are new to upcycling start with a small project like cutting the embellishments or beading off an old garment and adding them to a clutch or a hat.

Check out some our favorite designs from Saturday’s show below, and visit www.healthycommunitiesclt.com to read more about the City’s Healthy Communities program.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

More Stories from Qcitymetro

Most Popular

Police charge two children, 11 and 12, with involuntary manslaughter

Police charge two children, 11 and 12, with involuntary manslaughter

Sandwich shop owner killed outside NoDa business he ran with twin brother

Sandwich shop owner killed outside NoDa business he ran with twin brother

Jack and Jill chapter opens reading room at Charlotte school

Jack and Jill chapter opens reading room at Charlotte school

CATS gives free rides on holiday buses

CATS gives free rides on holiday buses

Our Partners