Wednesday, October 15, 2014


October 7th, 2014 marked the kick off of Brownsville's very first incentive based fashion program: Brownsville Project Runway! Starting small with five total participants, the program teaches youth the basics of sewing garments such as shirts, pants, and other accessories. The program is set to last a little more than two months. By the end of the program we hope to conduct a small fashion show as well as present a portfolio for each graduating member. To kick off the week the participants got familiar with their machines, learning to work the needle on lined paper. A little impatient with not being able to sew on fabric right away, the participants quickly realized why starting off slow was the best way to do things! 

Each participant received their very own sewing machine and binder to get started with a portfolio of what they will be crafting during their time in the program. The idea first came in place about one year ago during a staff meeting. The Brownsville Justice Center already has programs focused around community cleanups, music, and art. We needed something different and engaging that would bring about new interest and perspective. The youth in Brownsville are always up to date on the latest sneakers, snap-backs, and bomber jackets, so why not incorporate that in a stipend based program? Although there were a few delays in our launch, we are happy to say that with the help of NYC's Materials for the Arts we were able to get things started. Materials for the arts is an organization that collects unneeded items from businesses and individuals, and make donations available for free to its recipients: non profit organizations with arts programs, government agencies, and public schools. Some items we were able to receive from Materials for the Arts were: fabrics, threads, needles, buttons, zippers, and manikins.  
Project Runway Teacher/Instructor teaches participants Elijah Scarboro and Brian Colon how to work their needles. 

Participant Tynara Moyd focuses while handling needle. 

Participants Lakia Parks and Savannah Burgess work diligently with a little help from Ms. Jackson.

 The most interesting way to end the first week of Brownsville Project Runway was of course with a field trip! The members first trip was to a fall/winter 15 V.I.P. Event hosted by GQ and Glamour Magazine. The event was held Friday October 10th, 2014 at Simon's Roosevelt Field Mall located in Garden City, NY. 
The event called: Look Book Live featured the hottest and latest looks from Bloomingdale's. All five participants were front and center as they gazed on the trendy looks and latest craze RIP THE RUNWAY!

In attendance were well known fashion bloggers, magazine editors, stylists, fashion designers, and much more. Everyone who attended received gift bags, swag bags, and complimentary finger foods with drinks.
Participants sit front and center with their free gift bags waiting for the show to begin. 

Participant Brian Colon, Instructor Shakira Jackson, Participant Elijah Scarboro

Project Runway Participants and Brownsville Justice Center staff Lisa Bernard

Some of the looks that were featured were the slim fit suits, the stylish ankle boot, leather jackets, and of course the trendy fitted blazer for men! Each participant received shirts, journals, perfumes by Cartier, and so much more! We can truly say our first week was a great success! The participants are having a wonderful learning experience and are increasingly engaged as they get closer to the finish line! We hope to see you at Brownsville Project Runway's main event The Fashion Show. 
Glamour Magazine Model 

GQ and Glamour Magazine Style experts and hosts. 

Glamour Magazine Model

Glamour Magazine Model
GQ Magazine Model

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