Project Upcycle 2018 Designers


We are very pleased to announce the finalists for the 2018 Project Upcycle Sustainable Fashion Competition and Runway Event. These designers will be challenged to upcycle secondhand clothing provided by Goodwill into gala-worthy outfits. The live runway event takes place on Saturday, March 24, 2018. Cash prizes, provided by Saltwater Creative of Portsmouth, NH, will be awarded to the top three designers (First: $1,500, Second: $1,000, Third: $500). For event updates and to learn about the “role” models and VIP judges visit (and RSVP) to the Facebook Event Page. To learn more about the designers follow the links below.


Adara Bankhead is a high school senior from Portland Maine who loves vintage style clothing, making jewelry, sewing, and multimedia art.

Jackiellen Bonney is a textile and fashion designer with a focus on the human experience and how clothing can open new opportunities for healing, self-empowerment, and growth.

Jared DeSimio is an artist and designer who is always on the hunt for old worn-out clothes. A love of Hip-Hop and rural lifestyles are what influence his work the most.

Justin Desper is a Textile and Fashion Design graduate from Maine College of Art. While there, his focus centered on creating garments through a process that stimulates a desire to explore form, function, and problem-solving. With an appreciation for the bodies, his pieces adorn, Justin considers his models as collaborators in his work and holds his collaborative relationships in the highest regard.

Kirsten Elfe is a student of textiles and fashion at Maine College of Art and a Portsmouth native.

Maya Critchfield is an antique textile and tool seeker who specializes in fiber art, mending, and printmaking.

Tamsin Whitehead is an artist, designer and University Lecturer, teaching classes in feminism, sustainability and the fashion industry. Her academic work focuses on gender expression and representation, which she also explores in her wearable designs. She employs a variety of different media but is particularly interested in textiles and the transformation of materials through recycling.

Chloe Larochelle is a recent graduate of the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. She is passionate about sustainability and hopes to play a role in this movement that is spreading to every corner of the industry.

Mark your calendar and BUY YOUR TICKETS
before they are all gone!!!

6:00pm – 7:00pm Cocktail Hour & Gallery Pop-up
7:00pm – 9:00pm Runway Competition
9:00pm – 10:00pm After Party and Celebration
$35 for Members / $40 for Non-Members

Follow me (Recovergirl360), 3S Artspace, and Goodwill of Northern New England on Instagram for special announcements and behind the scenes Instagram stories.

xo jam


First Annual Project Upcycle


It’s officially official! Project Upcycle is really happening! All the details are over on the 3S Artspace website. The deadline to submit an application is February 9, 2018. The public event is on Saturday, March 24, 2018. Mark your calendars! Please share this post on your Facebook and Instagram pages. We want to get the word out to emerging fashion designers in New England, especially those that care about sustainability. There is an FAQ section on the 3S Artspace website but if that doesn’t answer your question, shoot me an email at or leave a question in the comments below.

Back to College Shopping


I got to play fashion stylist for the weekend and I loved it! Savers reached out to me to write a blog post using items purchased at Savers. The concept I pitched was of a young woman returning to college for her senior year. My friend, Maya, agreed to be my model. Savers gave us a wardrobe budget of $150.

We planned the outfits in advance.

  • jeans and a t-shirt for attending classes
  • an outfit for her work-study job at the library
  • everyday pieces for late night study sessions
  • a chic ensemble for art openings or an evening out
  • a pant suit for presentations and interviews


I found these vintage Lee jeans in the men’s section. I cropped them and washed them to accentuate the fringe. The slides were actually slingbacks but I cut off the straps and turned them into mules. Remember to check the men’s section for plain white t-shirts. These thick cotton boy-cut t-shirts are a nice alternative to the tissue tees that have been popular for too long. The red bag is actually new but the shot needed a pop of color so I included it. It’s a Jelly Retro Basket from Lisa Says Gah. I’m obsessed with it.

Cinch the waist of your jeans with a thick black belt for that 90s look.

The perfect pair of vintage jeans is not easy to find.  Be patient. The inventory at Savers turns over quickly. If you don’t find a pair on the first visit, go back again in a month. Trust me.


For a more studious look, pair a silk secretary blouse with a classic wool skirt. We added a vintage watch for a bit of analog bling and a quality trench coat for chilly Fall days. Personally, I am keeping my eyes peeled for a classic belted trench coat so I can pull off this look by Reese Blutstein. Follow Reese on Instagram for great style inspiration.




Turtlenecks and high-waisted pleated pants are a comfortable choice for late night study sessions. Layering is key for transitional seasons and drafty old buildings. SAVERS-TURTLENECK2


This thin turtleneck sweater dress can be dressed up with simple accessories making it a smart choice for an art opening or an evening out. SAVERS DRESS1.jpgFunny story — we couldn’t find a handbag that spoke to us so we opted for this basket from the home goods section instead. It’s a fun alternative to a traditional bag.  The cowhide slides help make the outfit feel unique and memorable. Judging by Maya’s reaction, I think these slides were her favorite find of the day.

Sculpture:  Arcangle, 1984, granite and Carrara marble by Gary Haven Smith  located at the University of New Hampshire Dimond Library

We opted for minimalist jewelry. The jewelry selection at Savers is insane. You can achieve just about any jewelry trend with the options they have. I know that sounds very sales-y but it’s true.


We scored a quality Ann Taylor pin stripe suit that fit Maya like a glove. For this shoot, we paired it with a vintage camisole but for an actual interview or presentation I would recommend a classic button down or silk shell top. Death by Elocution has great inspiration for updated classics like that. SAVERS-SUIT-2-cropped


SAVERS-SUIT-SHOESAgain we opted for slides over pumps. Block heels are easier to walk in and they offer a nice juxtaposition to a traditional suit.

How’d we do? Let us know in the comments.

BEHIND THE SCENES: Maya lives 3 hours away from me. It was a challenge to find the time to shop and shoot together. She arrived on Saturday night at 7 pm. Savers closes at 10 pm. We rushed over and treated the experience like a reality tv show. We split up and loaded up our carts with options. She tried everything on and quickly determined the best pieces. We dove back into the racks to find more pieces. When we went to cash out we discovered that everything we had still only added up to $130. We had to go back in and spend another $20!
The next morning we planned the outfits. There were a few pieces that on second inspection didn’t work well for our shoot. I blame it on us having to rush. I decided to swap out the items that didn’t work with items from my personal wardrobe that I actually did buy at Savers, just not on this trip. We swapped out ankle boots for the slides. We swapped out a big blazer for my vintage Lee jeans, and we swapped out elastic waist pants for the wool skirt.

That was fun! I want to do it all again. I hope the takeaway is that you can get quality pieces secondhand. It’s better on your wallet and on the environment. Next time you feel like your wardrobe needs a refresh —  think secondhand first! xo jam