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Morning Sun
  • 4-H fashion, style, clothing a cut above the rest

  • Many of the same children who displayed their finest 4-H fashion choices, constructed clothing and standout style will wear a different hat next week. Next week is the animal judging, and many will have a pig or a goat or a cow to display.

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  • Many of the same children who displayed their finest 4-H fashion choices, constructed clothing and standout style will wear a different hat next week. Next week is the animal judging, and many will have a pig or a goat or a cow to display.
    But just because fashion and farm animals may seem like two entirely different worlds, they’re not as different as one might think.
    “Life is not easy. We want the kids to be diligent, to learn to be strong minded and determined to accomplish the things they set out to do. That’s the same with hogs and with fashion,” said Becky Shanholtzer, 4-H clothing construction judge’s assistant.
    Girard High School was abuzz with wardrobe changes, handmade clothes, and, of course, ribbons, as dozens of 4-Hers swarmed for the 4-H Clothing Construction, 4-H Style Revue, and 4-H Fashion Fairs on Saturday.
    Clothing construction and style revue competitors had to be involved in the making of their items, while the fashion competitors modeled outfits they bought.
    With all the events and age groups, it seemed only minutes would go by before another child would shout, “Mom, I got a purple!”
    “There’s a lot of variety. Especially with the younger ones, they’re really excited about learning a new skill. They’re excited about bringing new things to the fair,” said juniors/seniors clothing construction judge Jean Jack. “The purple ribbons go to the ones that take more care, or perhaps have a little bit better technique. They take more cares and pains with their technique.”
    Of course, there were a number of handmade dresses, quilts, blankets, pajama pants and more. But there were a few unique items, like a whole category of “recycled” items, in which one item had been repurposed.
    Jack said that the lessons learned by the competitors are, in essence, life skills.
    “Everyone needs to know how to sew on a button. It’s a different way of looking at things. If you know sewing, it helps when you’re looking for ready-made clothing,” she said. “If you learn fabrics, you learn something you can work on for a career, maybe not for sewing, but fashion and design. At the least, it’s a wonderful hobby.”
    Additionally, the clothing construction skills on display on Saturday can be used to save money. Jack said that a dress that may be $200 can be made for maybe 1/3 of that if a person knows what they’re doing with a sewing machine, a needle and a thread.
    “My mother always said that if you knew how to sew, you will never meet yourself going down the street — someone wearing the same shirt going the other way,” Jack said. “There are some things that don’t turn out as well as others no matter how hard you try. We’re trying to praise the kids that do well, help teach the kids that don’t do as well, and keep them interested in learning a skill.”
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