UPCYCLING: Matthew Read, director of The Bowes Centre for Art, Craft and Design
UPCYCLING: Matthew Read, director of The Bowes Centre for Art, Craft and Design

YOUNG people with a head for business are being invited to sign up for a week-long summer workshop which will see them take a product from the drawing board to the shop shelf.

The upcycling fashion project, for youngsters aged 13 to 19, is being run by The Bowes Centre for Art, Craft and Design at The Bowes Museum, from Monday, August 20.

Those taking part will upcycle secondhand clothes and accessories before getting the chance to sell the finished items at a pop-up shop in Barnard Castle town centre on Saturday, September 1.

Matthew Read, director of The Bowes Centre, said although the project was based on fashion, the workshop covered a much broader range of skills which would prove useful to anyone thinking about running their own venture.

“It is about making and taking a product to market. It happens to be fashion, but it could be anything,” he said.

“We cover everything from registering a business and paying business rates to making a shop display and retailing the goods.”

The workshop is using donated goods and has the support of Teesdale Action Partnership and the County Durham Community Foundations, so places are free, transport costs can be covered and materials provided.

The week will begin with a fashion design masterclass, including a visit to the Catwalking exhibition at the museum and a demonstration from experienced and professional sewing machinists.

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There will be tips on turning a design into a garment pattern, information about how best to display items in a shop plus ideas on how to market and sell the goods.

The week ends with a career development talk on how students can progress with the skills learnt.

Then, on Friday, August 31, there will be a reception to launch the pop-up shop in town before those taking part spend the following day selling what they've made.

“It’s a project that give teens vocational skills,” added Mr Read.

“There is a whole week of activities, then we are going to run the retail outlet taking real money from real customers.”

There are a limited number of places on the workshop week.

For further details or to register, contact Mr Read at The Bowes Centre for Art, Craft and Design on 01833 694602.

Alternatively, email matthew.read@thebowesmuseum.org.uk or junkfashion@thebowesmuseum.org.uk.