What is Trashion?

Trashion is a fun way to use art to create awareness, wrapping serious messaging in an arresting collection of consumer waste creations. Our project brings local artists into schools to show how they find, handle, and shape these materials, transforming them from waste into something amazing. Clothes and accessories are created from used e-waste, discarded textiles, packaging, and plastic debris to make fashion statements which really mean something!

Our Pilot Project


Following the success of last year’s pilot Mash It Up! the sequel to our acclaimed Waste Not project is back.

Each year we work with selected Sydney high schools to address the problems of waste, pollution and raging apocalypse-anxiety, by engaging creative teenagers in something they are all obsessed with – fashion!

Bucking the trend for toxic fast fashion, the student teams work for 3 months to create a collection of trashion couture solely from waste materials. They also develop a multi-media communications strategy to compliment their creations. In September they parade their astonishing couture at the Youth Eco Summit, held at Sydney Olympic Park, competing for prizes such as Best Messaging and Most Resourceful.

This year Nepean CAPA, which cleaned up two major prizes at Mash It Up! 2018 are back, while students at Northmead CAPA have determined to give them a run for their money.

Throughout the process they are being supported by our Mash it Up! 2019 inspirational mentors, who are all exploring the future of fashion in their work, including sculptor Grace Lillian Lee and designer Paul Castro. Artist Angela Van Boxtel and swimsuit designer Pirra Griffiths, both mentors in 2018, enjoyed the process so much they have returned for a second run.

“We couldn’t be more impressed by the red-hot mentors we’ve secured this year,” said Mash it Up Director Ruth Hessey. “They are uniquely inventive, ingenious and fun people.

“Already their presentations to arts students at Nepean and Northmead high schools have made a huge impact. We’ve also filmed their interactions with the students’ designs and ideas. I know both Paul and Grace were blown out by the talent they saw and loved every minute of it. Angela and Pirra were with us last year and are proving a big hit with students once again.”

After last year’s transformational collections, Nepean CAPA banned plastic straws and coffee cup lids, and installed more recycling bins. Teachers, parents and students have become enthusiastic recyclers with textile donations pouring in for the new collection this year. 

This is the whole point of Mash It Up! The medium really is the message. We can’t wait for the big day at the Youth Eco Summit on September 3rd. Save the date!



What Do We Provide To Schools?

  • DVD of the original multi-award winning documentary film – WASTE NOT
  • A timeline for the projects culminating in participation at Youth Eco Summit in early September at Sydney Olympic Park with panels of sports, fashion and food industry luminaries giving feedback in breakout sessions. https://www.sydneyolympicpark.com.au/Education/Events/Youth-Eco-Summit-Secondary-Schools
  • Study guides with activities, research ideas, links and a film screening list
  • Workshops for How to Fashion Trashion from paper, plastic and food waste, electronic waste, pre-loved textiles, with artists such as Angela van Boxtel, swim wear designer Pirra Griffiths, set designer Imogen Ross, activist Marina Debris, avant garde hair stylist Shaun McGrath etc
  • One Storytelling Workshop for Documenting their Project using phones, stills and video cameras and social media
  • Access to our mentors and brand allies
  • Collaboration with a professional documentary film tea