Artists made the runway their canvas at the Festival of Arts on August 13, competing to create the most imaginative and unique designs using reclaimed, reused or recycled materials. A three-panel judge chose the top looks in four categories and over 2,000 Festival visitors had the opportunity to cast their votes for “People’s Choice Award.”
The Festival Runway Fashion Show was hosted by TV/Film actress Joely Fisher. Selecting the winners was a panel of judges including supermodel Kim Alexis, Laguna Beach Art Commissioner Suzi Chauvel and Pageant of the Masters Director Diane Challis Davy.
“Most Exciting Ensemble with Wow Factor” was awarded to painter Brad Elsberry who designed two outfits inspired by the underground Roman pool at Hearst Castle. The poolside outfit and evening gown were made from plastic car covers, grill netting and thousands of gum and candy wrappers.
Jeweler John Tolle won “Most Innovative Use of Materials” for his design comprised of Nespresso coffee capsules individually hand sewn onto a donated dress with a skirt made from cardboard boxes. Finishing off the outfit was a hat made from black Nespresso spoons.
Artist Mariana Nelson won “Most Creative Concept” with two outfits made of plastic bags. Dresses were made of dry cleaning bags with details added by twisting red newspaper bags into coral and other sea creatures.
Adam Neeley received the award “Most Glamorous & Elegant ‘Red Carpet’ Worthy Creation” for his stylish outfit made from more than 8,000 feet of VHS tape with dried leaves painted gold and topped off with a dramatic black headdress made from feathers and dry cleaning hangers. Adam’s runway look also impressed the crowd and took home the highly coveted“People’s Choice Award.”
A special honorable mention award was given to Hedy Buzan in recognition of her outfit made from over 200 items found at the beach including pizza boxes, bungee cord, beach toys, food wrappers, swim goggles, bottle caps, flip flops and more. Her design carried a special message for the audience and resonated with the judges, encouraging everyone to remove five pieces of trash off the sand each time they visit.