Sustainable fashion celebrates hyperfemininity

Photos by Hana Nikčević

On Sunday evening, the Victoria College Environmental Fashion Show (VEFS) hosted Divine Trash at the Hart House Great Hall. The event, which showcased the works of 8 designers worn by 24 models, celebrated themes of hyperfemininity, diversity, and environmental consciousness with repurposed second-hand and vintage clothing. The executive team—including Creative Director Jaime Redford, Design Director Jasmine Cabanilla, and Stage/Technical Director Shirley Li—was proud to announce this year as the fifth annual fashion show, describing it as the “most magical and mystical incarnation to date.”

Upon entry, guests were welcomed to enjoy a spread of hors d’oeuvres before seating themselves alongside the runway. The atmosphere was buzzing, as the anticipation grew increasingly more palpable as guests continued to file into the Great Hall. Following a brief introduction, Divine Trash began shortly after 8 o’clock.

Unfortunately, due to a poor marketing campaign, many students either expressed uncertainty about attending the show or were completely unaware of its existence altogether. When the show began and a trap remix of Aqua’s “Barbie Girl” started playing, however, my initial reservations quickly dissipated and I was immediately drawn into the show.

The venue served as a beautiful backdrop to the fashion show, however, some issues with production such as poor lighting, low volume, and breaks of silence between songs weren’t conducive to establishing the tone that such an extravagant theme demanded. Fortunately, the electric combination of style and wonderful models outshone these setbacks. A wave of pinks, florals, shimmery fabrics, and soft textures gained a roaring positive reception from audience members, who themselves came dressed in stunning formal attire. Throughout both halves of the show, the models continued to strut confidently down the runway; each outfit as glittery and as luxurious as the next.

At the end of the second act, the models were welcomed back on stage, accompanied by the respective designers. The connection between the designs and the models was undeniable. The pieces, which were so deeply rooted in self-expression and hyperfemininity, seemed as though they had been crafted specifically for those who wore them. The show was followed by a social reception, granting guests with the opportunity to get their photo taken, along with an auction and pop-up shop.

Divine Trash was unapologetically flashy in a way that demanded your undivided attention. It ended up being a fantastical and thoroughly enjoyable celebration of student fashion, which I only hope will continue to expand in years to come.


Editor’s Note 11/03/17: A previous version of this article suggested that the venue was not filled to capacity. A representative from the VEFS told The Strand that Divine Trash filled a total of 195 of the available 200 seats and that the Hart House Great Hall could only hold this amount of guests in order to abide by health and safety regulations.