Upcoming Irish designers wear everyday junk in bid to win a place at the world final

Horse stirrups, silage wrap and chicken wire are as important as pleats, beads and appliqué for the 60 Irish design teams putting touches to haute-couture outfits ahead of the first ever Junk Kouture World Final.

May 5 is the day the designers, aged 13-18 years, get to showcase their creations in the hope of being selected as one of the 10 entries competing against designs from London, Paris, Milan, New York and Abu Dhabi in the world final .

This is the first live final since the global pandemic began and it’s definitely back with a bang.

Junk Kouture judges Roz Purcell, Louis Walsh, Soulé and Stephen McLaughlin. Picture: Brian McEvoy

Pop singer-songwriter, Soulé, will join Roz Purcell, Louis Walsh and fashion designer, Stephen McLaughlin on the judging panel at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre.

All models striding with pride onto the runway will wear designs made from 100% recycled materials by themselves.

And the top 10 designs from this Dublin city final will be selected for the World Final which will take place in a location yet to be announced. These 10 designs will then compete against 50 other designs — 10 from each of Junk Kouture’s other city finals in their five new territories: London, Paris, Milan, New York and Abu Dhabi. At the World Final, there will be six individual City Designer Awards plus the first ever Junk Kouture World Designer of the Year.

Part of the prize at the Dublin City Final on May 5 is being flown to the world final to take part.

Louis Walsh checks out the design Culchie Life modelled by Student Leah Gow and made with fellow students Jennifer Curtin and Marie Blocher from Villiers Secondary School in Limerick using farmer's best friend, baling twine, plus other waste products from a farm such as silage wrap, chicken wire, milking cluster rubbers and horse stirrups.  Picture: Brian McEvoy
Louis Walsh checks out the design Culchie Life modelled by Student Leah Gow and made with fellow students Jennifer Curtin and Marie Blocher from Villiers Secondary School in Limerick using farmer’s best friend, baling twine, plus other waste products from a farm such as silage wrap, chicken wire, milking cluster rubbers and horse stirrups. Picture: Brian McEvoy

As well as judging, Soulé, will perform on the night as well.

The singer who has landed #1s on both the Irish Radio and Most Shazamed Charts, 10 million Spotify streams, is a three-time nominee for the Choice Awards Song of the Year; and performed at some of the country’s leading festivals from Electric Picnic to Other Voices, said: “As a singer, I know that both your performance and fashion choices play a big role in helping you to be memorable on stage. I will be on the hunt for young designers who give 110% to their performance and channel their inner Lady Gaga, who has made so many fashion statements throughout her singing and acting career!”

Also in attendance on the high-stakes fashion evening will be long-standing Junk Kouture judge Tracey Fahy, and program director for fashion design at Griffith College, Jane Leavey — they return as technical judges.

  • Tickets for the Dublin City Final at 7pm on May 5 cost from €26 and are available on Ticketmaster and from Bord Gáis Energy Theater Box Office.

The Finalists

South Finalists

  • Acantha — Ursuline Secondary School, Thurles, Co Tipperary
  • Green With Envy — Ursuline Secondary School, Thurles, Co Tipperary
  • Open Book — Villiers College
  • Experi-Mental — Pobal Choirchne Dhuibhne
  • On Pointe — Borrisokane Community College
  • Global Spiral — Coláiste Nano Nagle
  • Ode To Joy — Coláiste Nano Nagle
  • Print Outside the Book — John The Baptist Community School
  • Little Bo — Coláiste DunIascaigh
  • Deforestation — St Anne’s Secondary School
  • Contamination Cycle — Salesian Secondary College

Southeast Finalists

  • Battle On — Presentation Secondary School, Wexford
  • God Is A Woman — Tullow Community School
  • Minima — Scoil Chriost Ri
  • Optical — Blessington Community College
  • Rage of the Plague — Meanscoil Gharman
  • Virtual Reality — Loreto Catholic Girls’ Secondary School
  • Rising From The Ashes — Loreto Catholic Girls’ Secondary School
  • Get A Grip — Presentation Secondary School, Wexford
  • Unvail Le Passe — Castlecomer Community School
  • Beadtastic — Coláiste Bríde, Enniscorthy
  • Projapoti — Coláiste Bríde, Enniscorthy

East Finalists

  • Ex Static — Old Bawn Community School
  • The Maskquerade Ball — Dunshaughlin Community College
  • What Goes Around Comes Around — Portmarnock Community School
  • Woman of Light — Skerries Community College
  • Black Swan — Mount Sackville Secondary
  • Fungal Futures — Scoil Mhuire, Trim, County Meath
  • Madame Cellophane — Malahide Community School
  • Ms Anatomy — St Raphaela’s Secondary School
  • Ut Sint Unum (That We May Be One) — St Louis High School, Rathmines
  • Just a Little Moosic — Holy Family School for the Deaf
  • Royal Flush — Loreto Secondary School Balbriggan

West Finalists

  • Bohemian Pampas Tree — Wilson’s Hospital School
  • Tale of Two Pods — Moate Community School
  • Nested In Tradition — Moate Community School
  • Back To the Future — Cnoc Mhuire
  • Blewe — Our Lady’s Bower Secondary School
  • Re’jenner’ate — Our Lady’s Bower Secondary School
  • Shocked — Coláiste Naomh Eoin
  • Modern Victorian — Scoil Mhuire Strokestown
  • Gaia — Athlone Community College
  • Electric Ice-atope — Scoil Bhríde
  • Disposaball gown — Clarin College

North Finalists

  • Mother Amaranth — Beech Hill College
  • Monster Extinction — Our Lady’s Convent, Co Monaghan
  • The Blanc Draft — Scoil Mhuire Buncrana
  • Queen of Cutlery — Monaghan Collegiate
  • St Brigid Steps Into Spring — Bailieborough Community School
  • Fashion Flu — St Louis Grammar School, Ballymena
  • Packaging Punk Princess — St Louis Grammar School, Ballymena
  • Baum — Castleblayney College
  • Denim Duusu — Castleblayney College
  • Donegal Rose — Loreto Community School, Milford, Co Donegal
  • The Children of Lir — Loreto Community School, Milford, Co Donegal

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