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Many people are familiar with recycling clothes but most people are not as familiar with up-cycling. In fashion, it's a way of re-purposing objects by taking the original product and giving it a completely new function. It's fashion's way of re-introducing materials to the world. Using an endless variety of elements from vintage clothes to garbage, people craft dresses and outfits that glitter and amaze. By taking the older materials that are often not capable of being worn as clothes at all or because of damage or over-use, fashion designers can create something entirely new and stunning.

To read and see more about Nicholas Ruiz' bow-ties:

Emily Steel and her innovative Little Slide Dress:

Ryan Jude Novelline and his stunning fairy tale couture:

Grace DuVall and her woven masterpiece:

Don Pezzano  and his painting inspired fashion:

Up-cycling fashion is becoming a trend that is really set, not by major brands or corporations, but by the inspired designer crafting and for the love of creation. Recycling material and re-inventing it is a wonderful way to reduce the impact that we leave on this world and the beauty that results from these genius designers showcases the endless possibilities found in green fashion. Even if we stare with our mouths open at their artistry and skill we feel a bit inspired by their ingenuity. Maybe enough to pick up a craft or two and wear it with pride, knowing that we too, are able to help save our environment and look amazing while doing it.

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Lego Bow-tie

Bow-tie enthusiast Nicholas Ruiz began creating his own line of bow-ties after an event where, inspired by the theme of guitars featured in the event, he made himself a bow-tie consisting of guitar picks. Since that fateful moment, he has made ten other bow-ties all for different events and different themes. He plans on starting up a custom order business where the possibilities are endless for what can constitute a bow-tie. Each design is carefully constructed and put together for a specific reason and Ruiz is excited about just what can be used for a tie.

Little Film Dress

Another visionary artist, Emily Steele, decided to fuse the world of fashion and film together in her stunning “little film dress,” a masterpiece of a creation that uses film and incredible LED lighting to illuminate the images on the strips. Her goal? To show the importance and harmony of how light and film come together through art to create something beautiful. The seamless blending of the old-school film strips and the awesome LED lighting (that actually senses how much light is in the room so it know when to illuminate the dress to the best effect) would make her the envy of any cocktail party or movie premier.

Golden Book Dress

As a fantasy nerd that grew up on (and still to this day reads!) fairy tales, this dress by Ryan Jude Novelline is a literal dream come true. Made of old abandoned kid's Golden Books (you know those ones with the shiny gold foil on the spine?), the dress embodies the fairy tale spirit that's written across the pages. Despite the fact that I honestly don't think the paper-made dress would be very comfortable to walk around in, the way the pages are sewn it appears almost like fabric! The dress is whimsical, colorful, and stunningly beautiful; it could rival any Disney Princess' ballgown.

Jeanne d'Arc

Another of my favorites is this edgy armor woven of old bike tubes by Grace Duvall. She designed it for none other than the famous child martyr Joan of Arc. Inspired by the armor the saint would have worn, Duvall weaves, braids, and bolts the strips of plastic into an amazing piece of modern day armor. While Joan of Arc might have found the plastic poor for avoiding English arrows, the suit is brilliant for defending against litter and waste.

Apparition Jackets

Inspiration struck designer Don Pezzano when he discovered a few abandoned canvases covered with eerie shadow-like paintings. He salvaged them, brought them home, and turned what was already very interesting art into completely functional and haunting men's wear jackets. He labeled the pieces, quite fittingly, the Apparition Collection. Also adding to the mysterious and haunting effect is that there are only four jackets made; they could never be reproduced with the same tone or passion. They are one of a kind pieces.

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