PICTURES | The Longford entries for this year's Junk Kouture

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RTÉ, and RTÉ 2FM, are to join forces with Ireland’s leading recycled fashion and design competition, Junk Kouture. The brand-new partnership is announced as Junk Kouture celebrates its ten-year anniversary.

As the grand finale in the 3Arena on Thursday, April 30, edges closer, the new partnership with RTÉ will see RTÉ 2FM’s podcast queens, Laura Fox and Emma Power, hosts of popular Unlocked with Laura and Emma, present the Junk Kouture regional events and grand finale, while RTÉ 2FM DJ, Tara Stewart will provide the party atmosphere on the night, unleashing her musical prowess on the decks and on stage at 3Arena.

Dee Forbes, Director-General, RTÉ, says: “Junk Kouture enables students all over the country to embrace the principle of sustainable living whilst unleashing their inner creative genius, as they fashion haute couture designs out of trash and discarded materials.

“This partnership with Junk Kouture allows us to keep issues of sustainability and climate consciousness front-of-mind with younger audiences, which is an ongoing focus for us.”

Junk Kouture spokesperson and CEO, Troy Armour added: “We are really excited about our new partnership with RTÉ; it fits like a glove!

“To date, over half of all post-primary schools in the country participate in the competition and with our new partnership, we will bring it to an even wider audience.

“Work is currently underway to bring Junk Kouture to the UK, California and Hong Kong, followed by Spain, Australia and New York. With RTÉ joining us for 2020, we have the opportunity now to grow a phenomenal grass roots movement into something even bigger, as we continue to champion the extraordinary creativity of Ireland’s young people.”

The new partnership will see the introduction of an RTÉ 2FM Junk Kouture Wildcard, where one lucky entrant from each of the five regions will be chosen by Ireland’s national music station to compete alongside 75 other national finalists.

Teachers and students who missed out at their regional final will wait with bated breath for that all-important knock on the art room door, as Tara Stewart reveals if they’ll be heading to the 3Arena.

Since its inception ten years ago, Junk Kouture has attracted over 40,000 students, 8,000 teachers and 100,000 audience members.

Taking in elements of fashion, design, engineering and environmental sustainability, the competition is all about unleashing young people’s creative brilliance and empowering them to embrace sustainable living.

In April, post-primary school students from across the country will once again strut their stuff on the catwalk at the final in their bid for Junk Kouture glory, wearing haute couture outfits made entirely from recycled rubbish.