Pratt Student Responds to “Fast Fashion” With Upcycled Thesis Collection


Burton described an overseas trip as a turning point in her journey as a designer. “I had the opportunity to go to India and there I visited some factories where all of our Western clothes get shipped,” she said. “It was just crazy to see the amount of clothes that were at these factories.”

For her thesis looks, Burton used only textiles that she sourced by deconstructing garments from friends, family, and thrift stores. She didn’t bother to disguise their origins, choosing instead to incorporate the original items’ clothing tags, logos, and distinctive prints into her designs.

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“I decided to only use things that have already been made, trying to get people to stop buying so much,” she said.

Whereas the likes of Forever 21, H&M, and Zara pander to the everyday consumer’s hunger for novelty and keeping up with the Joneses, Burton celebrates history, provenance, and against-the-grain statements.

“I want people to gain a new perspective on fashion,” she said. “I want to unveil the glam that it’s so often portrayed as in magazines and bring it back to its rawness. So I would like to have people meditate on that.”

+ Pratt Institute

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