Hive Fashion initiative and DreamYard are an obvious fit! (No pun intended.) DreamYard has offered free out-of-school arts programming for years in the Bronx, but never before in fashion. We’re not sure what took us so long because the Bronx has been a fashion incubator for generations – from b-boy and hip hop style to current fashion bloggers like Street Etiquette. The people of the Bronx are constantly remixing fashion to make it their own and, in turn, inspiring fashion designers around the world.
This week is Fashion Week at DreamYard, which includes a five-day workshop at the DreamYard Art Center for teens and a culminating fashion show on August 10th. Fifteen participants will be working with two educators: Moriah Carlson, designer for Feral Childe, and Cydney Gray, a DIY fashion expert. The participants will spend the first three days learning about style and fashion and the last two days creating looks for the fashion show.
The Fashion Week workshop was developed using DreamYard’s Out of School Programs’ core values: Empower, Create, and Connect. Participants will learn to think critically about fashion and style, develop skills to create their own looks, and share their creations with their family, friends and the community at a fashion show. A theme throughout the week is the fashion cycle, in which trends flow between high fashion (think Dior and Chanel), consumable (think H&M and Target), and DIY (think Etsy and cutting up your old t-shirts). We usually look to high fashion to set trends, but often it’s more of a back and forth. Young people are starting trends all the time through experimenting with new styles that eventually inspire high fashion. (For example, look back at Marc Jacob’s collection in 1993, which was inspired by the young “grunge” rock scene in Seattle.)
Each of the first three days of the Fashion Week workshop explores a question from DreamYard’s Out of School Programs’ Framework. Day One’s question is “Who do you admire?” Participants will look at high fashion designs for inspiration, break down what a trend is, and create their first fashion items. On Day Two, participants will focus on the question “What do you see?” The idea is to allow them to explore why designers make certain design choices and how fashion blogging helps inspire and develop trends. Day Three asks the participants “What do you want to say?” Participants will continue learning DIY design techniques like basic sewing and pattern printing, as well as develop a sense of their own style and start to plan for the final fashion show. Participants will have two additional days to work together to create looks that will be showcased on Friday afternoon.
Overall, the goal of Fashion Week at DreamYard is to empower the young people who participate to look for inspiration around them and begin designing today with what they have available to them. After five days of inspiration, creation, and sharing, they will present their work with a sense of their own style and an idea of what they want to say through what they wear.
We hope you will join us tomorrow, Friday, August 10th at 4pm at the DreamYard Art Center (1085 Washington Ave @ 166th St, Bronx) for our fashion show to check out some of NYC’s hottest young designers! You can also follow the teens’ progress on our tumblr: dreamyardfashion.tumblr.com