Textiles, Fashion and Design students bring new lease of life to old clothes while raising funds for East Lancashire Hospice

Students from Blackburn College have helped to bring a new lease of life to charity sho

Creative students from Blackburn College have helped to bring a new lease of life to charity shop waste garments while raising funds for East Lancashire Hospice.

First year students from the Textiles, Fashion and Design Level 3 Extended Diploma were approached by the manager of the East Lancashire Hospice shop in Darwen to create new clothes out of donated clothes and waste garments that the shop was unable to sell.

Students researched popular fashion and came up with a range of 34 new clothing items which are now on sale at the shop in Bridge Street. Since going on sale the clothes have proved to be very popular with most of the items being sold in the first few days.

As part of the project the students also had the opportunity to dress two of the shop's windows, with photography students from the College capturing images of the Textiles, Fashion and Design students modelling the clothes on window banners. They also helped to re-design the interior of the shop.

Danielle Slinger, Course Leader in Textiles and Fashion, said: “When we were approached about the opportunity to get involved with this project with East Lancashire Hospice’s Darwen shop we were thrilled.

“It has given students a great insight into the slow fashion approach. These methods consider sustainability and how we use clothing to bring a new lease of life to an old garment, instead of throwing this into landfill which becomes harmful to the environment.

“Having the opportunity to dress the windows and interior of the shop to bring a fresh perspective was also a fantastic experience which the students loved. We would like to thank East Lancashire Hospice for this invaluable experience.”

Blackburn College student Harriet Middleton, 17, from Clitheroe took part in the project, she said: “I really enjoyed being involved with this project. It was surprising how much we could make from so little. We had to be very creative and adapt some of our initial ideas when we realised that they wouldn’t work in the way we wanted them to.

“It has made me look at my own clothes and taught me to look at fashion in a new way, seeing how you can take one item and deconstruct to come up with a something totally different.”

Hospice Income Generation Director Sharon Crymble said: “The involvement with the students has helped to highlight the benefits of pre-loved clothing that has been kindly donated to our charity shops.

“Buying clothes in this way is helping in so many ways, it’s helping the environment by reducing landfill, often created from fast fashion, raising money from unwanted items for a cause close to many people’s hearts and also showing the individuality of pieces, you wouldn’t find a replica of in a high street store – each one is unique.

”I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the students involved, as well as course leader Danielle, for creating amazing styles and great excitement within our Darwen shop. I would definitely recommend a visit, and you never know, you might even pick up a unique piece from the collection at a bargain price in the process.”

Blackburn College Principal and Chief Executive Dr Fazal Dad said: “We are always keen to provide our students with real-life experiences, and the collaboration with East Lancashire Hospice is a fantastic example of this.

“We are delighted that this project has provided our students with such a valuable opportunity to develop their skills, whilst also raising vital funds for such a worthy cause.”

Students are now due to start work on the second part of the project where they will have the opportunity to design and re-purpose items for interiors such as wallpaper and cushion covers with their own print designs.

6 May 2022, 15:07 PM