Beauty queens in frocks made of bottle tops and bin bags This is what happens when Miss England goes green!Sixty contestants took part in eco-friendly fashion show as part of beauty pageantGirls made outfits from items they'd salvaged from bins, found in charity shops or begged from relatives
09:38 GMT, 26 June 2012
In the halcyon days of beauty pageants gone by it was enough for Miss World wannabes to turn up looking pretty and spout something about world peace.
These days, a whole lot more is demanded from the modern beauty queen. Finalists for this year's Miss England not only had to compete in a fitness round, but this year, for the fifth year running, the 60 finalists were put to task designing their very own eco-friendly outfit for an environmental catwalk show.
Last night, the fruits of their labour were revealed in a spectacular display of flying fabric at a show held in Leicester's Athena hotel.
The girls went all out to impress, salvaging items from charity shops, family hand-me-downs, bin liners (and the bags themselves, in one case) to create their winning looks.
Flying colours: Salvaged scarves made this stunning dress for Carley Rugman, Miss Bristol & Avon in the Eco Catwalk fashion show at the Athena Leicester
Jodie Duckworth, Miss Nuneaton crafted her dress entirely from discarded bottle tops she had collected
from the floor – winning extra points by citing in her interview that
given the harmful effects thrown-down bottle tops have on the
environment and the animals that live in it, her act of collecting the
tops had an added benefit of protecting the flora and fauna.
A clutch of girls made the requisite
newspaper and magazine dresses (there are a few every year, said one of
the organisers), while another made hers from ties – another favourite
with the green beauty queens.
A shredded bin bag made for a
dramatic gothic look for Rikaya Tagoe from Liverpool, while Miss
Willerton of London (formerly a contestant on Katie Price's reality
show) spotted her dress on a mannequin in the window of Oxfam. A flurry
of shears and some silk flowers, and she'd created a stand-out tropical
The girls did so well, said the Miss
England spokesman, that instead of the planned 15 girls going through to
tonight's final, 20 girls have been put forward as hopefuls for the
Miss England crown.
'It was a smashing show,' he said. 'All the girls made some wonderful outfits.
'We introduced this round five years ago as an
antidote, so to speak, to the bikini round. The effort the girls made was incredible.
'The competition is so close, it's hard to call.
Tonight's final, which will be streamed via the Miss England website (missengland.info),
will be held at Leicester's Athena hotel. Doors open to guests at
6.30pm and the show will start at 8pm. Results will be heard at 11pm.
The winning girl will be entered into the Miss World contest, to be held later this year.
Green goddesses: Emma Martin, Miss Kent in her dress made from fabric samples, and right, Grace Levy, Miss Hampshire & Isle of Wight in a dress trimmed with magazine pages
Plenty of bottle! Jodie Duckworth, Miss Nuneaton, in her commended bottle top design; Stephanie Hodson, Miss North West in a homemade mini; Miss London Amy Willerton spotted her dress in a window of Oxfam and took to it with a pair of shears and some silk flowers
Upcycling: Anastasia Smith, Miss North Yorkshire conjured up her confection with ivy and lace; Faye Ayers, Miss Liverpool used netting and pearls; Charlotte Holmes, Miss Devon transformed an old dress into a catwalk creation
High fashion: Miss Sussex Alyse Louisa Spratt made a ballgown from clashing fabrics, while Tamzin Cummings, Miss Sunderland trimmed hers with taffeta and blooms
Eco chic: Georgina Rickman, Miss Front Academy; Rikaya Tagoe and Jaime-Lee Faulkner, Miss Modelized managed to make their salvaged gowns look elegant
Flying the green flag: Contestants gather before the eco show last night
Bonham Carter, eat your heart out! Miss England finalists showcase
their eccentric eco outfits on the eve of the Miss England final, to be
Foraged fashion: The girls sourced recycled materials to make their costumes