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    let's make some new things out of old parts...

  • Concept

    Why "Frankenstyle"??

    There is a classic story known as Frankenstein by Mary Shelley which has had different iterations over the last 200 years. The main character is in fact Frankenstein, a man that is put together using "old parts." Learn more about the story with this article. For those of you that watch Netflix - there is a new show called Wednesday that also ties into the Frankenstein story.


    Using the idea of Frankenstein, we wondered what would happen if we made new clothing from old parts?

    Rubbish to the Runway

    Some people who read this may be aware that millions of garments are dumped into Ghana every week from the 'global north.' While amazing organizations like the Or Foundation are tackling this issue at the highest level, we wanted to bring some attention to the issue in a different way.


    Our goal is to offer a fun alternative to clothing design by using upcycled materials. Each contestant will work with a "sidekick" to find, prep and make one or two pieces to show.


    Those selected receive a small fund (100 GHc / $10) to purchase goods at the local markets or thrift stores. The sidekick will document the entire experience using pictures and video.

    Show & Sell

    For the inaugural contest, the top design earned 3000 GHc (~$250). While the prize money is a nice incentive for designers to participate, we also want to show off their hard work.


    During the design phase we will begin promoting the designs via social media. We welcome supporters to come along for the ride, especially those interested in owning the 1-of-1 pieces that are created. We also intend to offer NFTs based on the journey that each team took. Each design is being made with room to be tailored.


    For those near where the final event will be held, we invite supporters to come and see the pieces when they are ready to be seen!

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    First, you'll need a sidekick...


    Assemble! As you take on the challenge of creating one or two unique pieces from second-hand clothing, you will need someone to help you along the way.

    The biggest role the sidekick has is to record your progress at each stage. At the market? take pictures and video. Drawing sketches? take pictures and video. Sewing and fitting? take pictures and video! 
    The story is just as important as the piece (or pieces) that are made. Choose a good sidekick!
  • Contestants


    You do not need to be a proven designer to participate in the competition. There is no age limit or experience required. If you have good ideas and basic skills, you could be selected for the competition.

    Show & Sell

    In the first contest held in Ghana, the top design earned 3000 GHc (~$250). We will offer the same first prize to the top winner in New York City.


    We want to make sure teams document every part of the experience. This will make it possible for people around the world to follow what you are doing - and possibly support you financially by purchasing your design or commissioning more pieces.

    Common Questions

    • What is the 100 GHc / $10 for? It is to be used to purchase second-hand garments.
    • What kind of second-garments? These should be items that are found at markets and thrift shops. Ideally these are pieces of clothing that are at the end of their life cycle; pants with stains, shirts with rips, etc. Please don't purchase a perfectly good item and take it apart - that defeats the purpose.
    • Can I use some of my old clothing? Yes absolutely. But don't use something that is in relatively good shape. The idea is to bring new life to something that can't really be used anymore.
    • Can a contestant spend more that the 100 GHc / $10 provided? Yes. A contestant can spend what they want, but the core pieces(s) should be made from second-hand clothing. This is why it is so important to record the entire process (video, pictures).
    • Can I make an accessory (hat, bag, etc.)? Yes you can.
    • When does the piece need to be complete? TBA.
    • What else needs to be part of the design? There needs to be a little bit of handwoven cloth included somewhere. Judges will look for it.
    • What else will the judges be looking for? Designs will be evaluating: concept, materials, creativity, and overall design.
  • Next step... Apply!

    While the contest window has not yet been determined, you can start by identifying your team. Along with your sidekick, you will need to provide your concept for one or two pieces. What will you look for in the thrift stores? What kind of piece(s) do you want to design? What kind of sewing, tailoring, design experience do you have? Who is your sidekick, and why will did you choose them to help you?


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    JUNE 2023 - New York City

    The second Frankenstyle contest will take place soon!

  • Help Us Celebrate SLOW Fashion...

    We are offering limited seats for those who want to attend the Frankenstyle event on Wednesday, February 22. Please note that this is not a traditional fashion show. We will talk briefly about the United Nations SDGs as they pertain to fast fashion, learn about the fashion pieces that were created, and celebrate a commitment to upcycling and slow fashion. If you would like to attend, please fill out the form below. Preference for tickets will go to those in textiles, cotton, and fashion trade.

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