Acclaimed sustainability and design contest celebrates ten years by launching in FIVE international cities in 2021

Thirteen cities spanning seven continents by 2023 Re-scheduled date for 2020 Grand Final revealed

Junk Kouture announces 10-year ambition to enrich and empower the lives of a billion young people across the world through sustainability and creativity.

*Stock photo from 2019

All-island fashion and sustainability contest Junk Kouture takes on the world as it expands globally after ten incredible years of empowering young people to create high-end couture from everyday junk. Capturing the imagination of 100,000 students in Ireland to date, a decade of design prowess on a national stage has led to plans to grow Junk Kouture into a World Tour that spans the world’s seven continents between January and August each year and culminates with a World Final at the end of September. 

Junk Kouture’s World Final has the ambition to become the Eurovision of young sustainable fashion and creativity, as the world’s youth gather to showcase their creative skills.  Junk Kouture’s World Tour will build momentum over the next three years. Beginning in January 2021, the initial season will take place digitally in five new cities: London, Milan, New York City, Paris, and Dubai, before adding further digital shows in Tokyo, Auckland, Sydney, Sao Paolo, Los Angeles, Cape Town, and Singapore in 2022 and then transition back to a full live tour with shows being hosted in some of the most iconic venues around the world as we return to pre-Covid normality.

Next year sixty finalists – ten each from Ireland, the UK, Italy, America, France, and the UAE – will compete in the Global Digital Final. There will be one winner from each territory while one talented designer will be crowned ‘Junk Kouture World Designer of the Year’. See our website for more details on the other amazing awards up for grabs.

Incorporating elements of environmental sustainability, fashion, art, design, and engineering, Junk Kouture annually showcases aspiring designers aged 12 – 18-years from across Ireland as they rise to the challenge to envision, design, create and model wearable fashion styled from household rubbish, discarded bits and bobs, and upcycled tat – the golden rule is that everything used must be 100% recycled.

This new international element now gives Generation Z worldwide a creative voice they have never had before to drive home the message that the biggest crisis the generation face is our changing climate and finding a sustainable future for our planet. Now more than ever our fashion choices have an impact on the world around us and Junk Kouture is calling on young innovative minds to push the boundaries and choose materials for their designs that might usually be overlooked.

If you think you have what it takes to reign supreme on the global stage, you can enter as an individual or as a team with a maximum of three members for this exciting digital contest. There is no time like the present to get your thinking cap on and start considering your designs. Follow these simple steps to kickstart your Junk Kouture Digital journey:

  1. Go to the Junk Kouture website to download the handbook which has everything you need to get started.
  2. Follow us on our social channels @junkkouture for daily updates and inspiration.
  3. Create an Instagram account for your design and document your journey.
  4. In November, go to
  5. Register as a Junk Kouture Member and join our community!

And that’s not our only news… 

Junk Kouture 2020 was sadly disrupted by the outbreak of Covid-19 in Ireland and the grand final in the 3Arena postponed in April. The new normal is something we are all still acclimatising to and with that in mind, we have come up with a solution to ensure that you still have the opportunity to strut your stuff and possibly walk away as the overall winner of this year’s competition.

It will be lights, camera, action for this year’s finalists as their grand final is broadcast from Dublin on the RTÉ Player in a carefully socially-distanced final hosted by RTÉ 2FM presenters Laura Fox and Emma Power in December. Our celebrity judges Michelle Visage and Louis Walsh will also be back on hand to help choose the over-all winner. In what promises to be an incredible display of haute-couture and high-energy performances, a public vote for a brand new award will also take place on the night so be sure to tell your friends to tune in and show their support!

Star of RuPaul’s Drag Race and Junk Kouture judge Michelle Visage said: “This year has been a huge test for everyone and I am so happy that Junk Kouture has been able to adapt in the face of adversity so we can still celebrate the amazing talent of Ireland’s emerging young designers. I love everything about this competition as it not only showcases the extraordinary creativity of the next generation but also carries an important message for us all, to look after the world that we live in. The new digital format means that I can still be involved from the other side of the world here in LA – who would have thought it? I cannot wait to sit back and take in all the fabulous creations on the night of the final. As for my advice to our fantastic finalists on the night – be true to yourself, bring big energy on stage, and remember this is your moment to shine! See you all online very soon.”

TV talent show judge extraordinaire and Junk Kouture judge Louis Walsh said: “I was so disappointed when the Grand Final of Junk Kouture was cancelled in April. We have had a tough six months and we all need good news right now. The JK team have been working behind the scenes on this and it is fantastic news that the final can now go ahead. All of you future designers will have the opportunity to strut your stuff on the catwalk and own that stage. It will be different but equally dramatic as your performance will be captured on film for the new Digital Final broadcast. You are what Junk Kouture is all about and I can’t wait to see you all and see who is going to be the next big thing! I will be joining Michelle, who is on the other side of the world in LA, from here in Ireland as we judge the Digital Final side by side. And the even more exciting news is that the competition is going global so this year’s entries and finalists will be competing on a world stage. Now, that’s a result!”

Junk Kouture PR & Comms Executive Katie Brill said: “The new World Tour will be rolled out to mark 11 years of Junk Kouture. Our ambition is clear, we want to enrich and empower the lives of one billion young people across the world through sustainability and creativity. While we launch with digital shows now, we will transition to our full live World Tour by 2023, post-Covid. Our plans are 13 shows across seven continents, one every three weeks, similar in a way to Formula 1 – we want to make sure that as many young artists can get access to the empowerment and opportunities that Junk Kouture brings.”

Negotiations are currently underway with a global iconic city to host the World Final over the next 10 years. Now the winners from Ireland will go forward and compete with likeminded individuals from all over the world, offering an opportunity for teenagers and putting sustainability and creativity on a global platform.

In the meantime, stay tuned in the coming weeks for more updates on our 2020 final, our international expansion and the big reveal of our brand-new international judging panel.

“No one ever changed the world by being the same as anyone else!”

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