A CLOTHING connoisseur hopes a catwalk show with a twist will help fast fashion fans realise the industry is not on-trend.

Rachel Parry, store manager at Oxfam Darlington, pulls together an annual fashion show spectacular using donated pieces and second-hand materials to create something entirely new.

Her creations are featured at the Oxglam event in the fitting surroundings at the Festival of Thrift weekend which celebrates living sustainably.

Ms Parry hopes this year more than ever that the Oxglam show proves that cheap fast fashion is not the be-all and end-all for clothes conscious consumers trying to be on trend.

She said: "Fast fashion is one of the leading causes of industrial pollution, second only to oil.

“Our desire to wear on-trend clothing means manufacturers are churning out countless tonnes of clothes which will be worn only a handful of times before they fall out of favour, and end up either donated to a charity shop or in landfill.”

She added: “Hopefully, the show, as well as everything else that goes on at the festival, encourages people to see the potential in upcycling their existing clothes rather than buying new.

“We are often guilty of chucking out perfectly good clothes just because we want to change up our wardrobe, and the fashion show shows you that unwanted items can be turned into something new and unique.”

This year’s Oxglam show at the Festival of Thrift, which returns to Kirkleatham, near Redcar, in September, will be based on the 2019 festival themes of clean air and commemorating the moon landing.

Mr Parry added: “Our Oxfam shop in Darlington has an extremely varied customer base, from children through to retirement, and it includes a lot of people who shop with us because they don’t want to buy in to fast fashion, and want to do what they can to protect the environment.

“The number of customers who have had their eyes opened to the perils of fast fashion is growing, and I see this reflected in conversations with them, and in the interest in our store’s upcycling and sewing class.”

The Oxglam event relies on volunteers to source, sew and create outfits as well as working backstage and modelling for womenswear, menswear and childrenswear.

To volunteer, email oxfamshopf0417@oxfam.org.uk, call 01325-382415, or visit the Skinnergate shop and ask to speak to the manager.