2022 The Festival of Arts Runway Fashion Show in Laguna Beach

The Festival of Arts Runway Fashion Show at Festival of Arts/Pageant of the Masters roared back to life after two years of absence as a result of the pandemic. The unique format featured recycled, reused and reclaimed materials that were used by exhibitors who stepped out of their artistic medium. From fabric masks to underwater photographs to coffee filters/cups/lids to cat food can lids were just some of the materials that were made for over-the-top creative couture. The competition was similar to TV’s Project Runway were festival artists competed from different categories. There were nine artists who contributed their talent at the Festival.

Marites an OC resident was her first time to see this entertaining and innovative fashion show. “The Festival Arts Fashion Show was really beautiful. It was my first to see it and I wished I saw the fashion shows from previous years. Now I want to watch it every year. The artists were really creative in designing the dresses by using coffee filters and bags, packing paper, cereal box cutouts crumpled newspapers, dry cleaning plastic and more. These beautiful dresses are really works of art,” remarked Marites.

Marites (left) and Linda (right) First time to see the unique and innovative fashion show at Festival Pageant

The competition was hosted by Nelson Coates. Nelson has been a regular guest/host at the Festival of Arts and a production designer for films and television. He has also been nominated for the 1997 Primetime Emmy Award for Stephen King’s “The Stand” and 2008 Art Directors Guild Excellence in Production Design for the film “Flight” directed by Robert Zemeckis. His latest high profile project was romantic comedy “Crazy Rich Asians”.

Emmy nominee and the host of this year's Festival Runway Fashion Show Nelson Coates
Emmy nominee and the host of this year’s Festival Runway Fashion Show Nelson Coates

The panel of judges at this years Fashion event were three women leaders in the art and fashion industries:

Judges from left to -right Lauren Shapiro, Suzi Chauvel and Diane Challis Davy at 2022 Festival Runway Fashion Show
Judges from left to -right Lauren Shapiro, Suzi Chauvel and Diane Challis Davy
  • Lauren Shapiro costume designer of The Late Late Show with James Corden.
  • Suzi Chauvel a fashion executive, an accomplished international artist and documentary producer. As a textile designer for 10 years, Suzi worked half of each year travelling all over Asia and India.
  • Diane Challis Davy is a Laguna Beach resident and is in her 26th season as director of Pageant of the Masters.
Artist 1 Elizabeth McGee. The gown was sewn from from hundreds of fabric masks.
Artist 2 Cheryl Walsh. The gown is made up of test prints with Cheryl’s own underwater photos printed on a large format printer. Printed on 100% cotton fine art prints.
Artist 3 Linda Potichke. Linda chose materials such as upholstery fabric, tassels from throw pillows, chicken feathers, matboard, luggage strapping and flowers made from cat food can lids.
Artist 4 Natalie Duarte. Natalie used Keurig parts: the cup, the ring and the foil tap as a starting point. Then added pop top soda cans, red & black trash bags and colored threads.
Artist 5 Jayne Dion. The gown is made from 1,500 folded packing paper. The bodice has a removable sculpture made of glass dome and a sculpted tree made of metal wire.
Artist 6 Elizabeth Sharon Jackman. The outfit is made of fabric from a broken patio umbrella. Her battle armor is made from Amazon Prime padded bag packaging w/ underskirt and straps from patio umbrella fabric. The sword was created from cardboard box from Amazon.
Artist 7 Kirsten Whalen. For coffee lovers. The materials are made of coffee bean packaging, coffee filters/cups/lids and beans. The skirt and bodice are pleated coffee bean bags. The coffee beans are painted and glued on to look like berries. The belt buckle is made of the inside of a French Press and coffee lids.
Artist 8 N.C. Swan. Bridesmaid gowns are made from organic vegetable bags and leftover green trash bags. Headpieces and bouquets are made from colored plastic newspaper bags. Flowers ae made of drawstring tops of kitchen bags mixed w. leaves and flowers. The bubble machine is a remnant from the past birthday party.
Artist 9 Kirah Martin. The gown showcased the beauty of the earth and nature. The head dress was crafted from items lying around the artists’ house during the pandemic. The artist used grocery bags for the bodice and duct tape with cereal box cut outs as decorations. The skirt is made from a rescued wedding gown that was thrown out decorated with florals and leaves.
Ruchel Freibrun, Popbuff blogger at the 2022 Runway Fashion Show at Festival of the Arts in Laguna Beach
Ruchel Freibrun, Popbuff blogger

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