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April 13, 2010

Recycling all the way up the catwalk

The modelling world conjures up images of glamorous fashion shoots in Paris, New York and Milan – and now Govan.   Local project, Starter Packs Glasgow, helps folk who have been homeless by providing a range of recycled household goods.   But what started as a bit of a fundraiser to support the project’s core work has evolved into something wholly unexpected

The modelling world conjures up images of glamorous fashion shoots in Paris, New York and Milan – and now Govan has joined select band.

The venture started with a calendar to boost funds for Govan-based homelessness charity Starter Packs, but now it has evolved into a social enterprise modelling agency, Magpie Models.

Around half a dozen women and girls of all ages have already signed up for the venture and it is hoped they may be called up soon.

Sarah Findlay, development manager of Starter Pack, said: “We are a model agency but not in the traditional sense. It’s not about models competing for shoots, but a group of women who are helping to raise the profile of the charity.

“It all stemmed from Govan Gals 2010 calendar, which we put together last year, and we realised we could do more.

“The calendar was great but we realised it didn’t have to be a one-off. We have a mum of three and her daughters involved as well as a housing officer and a local businesswoman.”

Proceeds from any future shoots will help fund the charity, which provides recycled household items to give people a start in life. Among the models who have signed up are Johanne Gregory, 39, and her three daughters Natalie, 18, Natasha, 14, and seven-year-old Mirren.

As featured in the Evening Times, the Govan Gals 2010 calendar enlisted the help of volunteers and residents to model vintage clothes and designs made from reclaimed fabrics such as bed linen.

The idea for the calendar was hatched during a volunteers’ night out at an eco-fashion workshop hosted in Magpie’s Nest, a clothing and textiles thrift shop operated by Starter Packs.

The first calendar, published for 2009, was cobbled together in a few days last year and went on to sell 1,000 copies