Trash to trend: Kings Plaza’s ‘Recycle the Runway’ showcases high-fashion sustainability

KP-109 Parsons Student Project Groups 1, 2 & 3
Freshmen students from Parsons School of Design participated in Kings Plaza’s eco-friendly ‘Recycle the Runway’ fashion show on Saturday, April 27. From left: Ojaswini Gupta, Yiran Yin, Bridget Campbell, Mia Gould, Chloe Rowe and Kmara Royster with their designs.
Photo courtesy of Dominick Totino Photography

One person’s trash is another’s ensemble!

Kings Plaza closed out Earth Month in style on Saturday, April 27 with a high-fashion, low-waste runway show.

The event, dubbed “Recycle the Runway,” wove together sustainable wears and creativity, transforming the sprawling Mill Basin shopping center into a hub of “trashion” where designers transformed garbage into runway-ready looks.

First place winner Rita Mister.Photo courtesy of Dominick Totino Photography
Second place winner Brooklynn Smith.Photo courtesy of Dominick Totino Photography

Local contestants had just one hour to seam-lessly craft fashionable outfits from recyclable materials. Freshmen from New York City’s Parsons School of Design, led by Assistant Professor of Fashion Design Naika Colas, created sensational dresses using items like makeup bags, makeup products, earring backs and soda can lids.

Off the runway, the event served as a platform to thread the needle between style and sustainability.

Attendees got to learn about environmental issues, while Macerich — Kings Plaza’s parent company — teamed up with One Tree Planted to share information on the tree-planting nonprofit, and to promote sustainable practices.

Host Tiffany Coates, judge Rick Davy, third place winner Jean Remarque, judges Eliana Shoffner and Kamla Millwood, first place winner Rita Mister, judge and professor Nakia Colas, second placce winner Brooklynn Smith and judge Amelia Rawlins-Henry.Photo courtesy of Dominick Totino Photography

Guests who pledged to use reusable totes also received complimentary bags, ensuring they could shop sustainably in the future.

Dawn Simon, area senior manager of marketing for Macerich, said the event was a testament to Kings Plaza’s dedication to a greener future.

“Recycle the Runway was a successful testament of our dedication at Kings Plaza to the marriage of fashion and sustainability,” she said in a statement to Brooklyn Paper. “It showed us firsthand that eco-conscious choices can be both stylish and impactful. From transforming discarded materials into runway-worthy designs to educating attendees about environmental stewardship, the event highlighted the creative potential and importance of sustainable fashion. Through strategic partnerships and actionable initiatives, we reaffirmed our commitment to promoting these lifestyle choices for a greener future.”