‘Neighborhood Series’ fashion show to make its first Boomslang appearance



by Amanda Powell

In Lexington, chances to break into the fashion industry are limited. This is why merchandising, apparel and textiles junior Sarah Jane Estes created the Lexington Fashion Collaborative with her friend Soreyda Benedit-Begley.

“We want to eventually be a resource center for people going into design, because there really isn’t a lot of information and opportunity here in Lexington,” Estes said.

The Fashion Collaborative has teamed up with WRFL’s Boomslang festival on a project called The Neighborhood Series. For the past two years, the Lexington Fashion Collaborative has held a fashion show called The Future of Fashion, but The Neighborhood Series will be its first non-runway show.

“It (Boomslang) is kind of a celebration of alternative music, but along with that it’s the arts in general, so I was asked to organize an art show,” Estes said.

The Neighborhood Series is an art show made of installations. Estes said about 16 artists and designers are working on each of the pieces, and each installation has its own fashion element. But the most interesting thing about the show is that the installations are going to more or less be made from trash.

Smiley Pete Publishing, Street Scene, Third Street Stuff and Coffee, Coffee Times CoffeeHouse, the Morris Book Shop, Mulberry and Lime, CD Central and Local First Lexington are the eight businesses donating their material waste to the show.

“Each one (installation) is going to be themed in that business, and it’s going to be constructed from the things the businesses have given to us that they were going to throw away,” Estes said.

She said one piece is being made of coffee filters and cupcake holders. Estes will work on the installations for Coffee Times and the Morris Book Shop. For Coffee Times, she is sewing burlap sacks together to create a gown. For the Morris Book Shop, she is creating another gown out of book pages.

Estes described how she is cutting book pages like kids cut paper snowflakes. The cut pages will look like lace, and then she will hand stitch pages onto a base of tulle or muslin fabric.

At the other business locations, Estes said one designer and one artist have been working on a piece for each business. Estes, however, designed both of her gowns on her own and is constructing both.

“I’ve been designing for five years now. I got into fashion in high school. I started making T-shirts and handbags,” Estes said. “I’ve just always been interested in art and sewing, so it just kind of developed.”

The Neighborhood Series will be one of the last events of Boomslang on Sunday. The show will be at the Land of Tomorrow Gallery, located at 527 E. Third St. The gallery will open at 7 p.m.