28 May 2022

PICTURES | Innovative Longford student wins national title at Relove Fashion Competition

Ella Mulligan from Cnoc Mhuire Secondary School in Granard has been crowned the overall winner at the Relove Fashion Competition Final.

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Caption: Resource Efficiency Officer for Eastern Midlands Regional Office, Joanne Rourke, Relove Fashion overall winner Ella Mulligan from Cnoc Mhuire, Granard, presenter Lorraine Keane and Rediscovery Fashion Programme Manager Arran Murphy

The Relove Fashion competition is a sustainable fashion competition open to all secondary school students in the Eastern, Midlands and Dublin region. 

It encourages students to take a deeper look at how their clothing is made and helps students explore creative reuse options, such as upcycling, repairs, alterations, and mending. It was developed in response to the growing environmental and social impacts of the fashion industry and the need for change.

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The competition was developed and is funded through a partnership framework between the Eastern and Midlands region local authorities on sustainable waste management and prevention. 

Longford County Council is one of ten local authorities involved, along with the Rediscovery Centre, Ireland’s National Centre for the Circular Economy.

This year Longford emerged victorious with Ella Mulligan from Cnoc Mhuire, Granard awarded the overall prize, fighting off eighteen other finalists. Her outfit is made from an old wardrobe cover, her dad’s old jeans, pearls from an old bracelet and old shoes. 

Ella researched the fabrics she used to create her outfit in depth and tie-dyed her skirt yellow with turmeric.

Ella recognises that fast fashion contributes to climate change and believes people should be more conscious of what they buy and where they buy, recommending charity shops and online platforms such as Depop over fast fashion companies. 

Ella points to young people being more conscious of their spending, with kilo sales of vintage or second-hand clothes becoming more popular. Ella says this is good to see because it benefits our planet greatly.

Longford County Council Environmental Awareness Officer Gary Brady says the competition is a wonderful way to generate environmental awareness in the school-going generation. “I’d like to congratulate Ella and her teacher Charmaine Hetherton at Cnoc Mhuire in Granard on their achievement – it’s great to see the work of a local school being recognised at the Grand Final.”

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