HARRISBURG, Pa. — Among the classic farmer muck boots, John Deere hats, worn jeans, flannel shirts, camouflage and belt buckles at the Pennsylvania Farm Show were some of the state’s best dressed.
During the Fashions with a Flair show, models of all ages and sizes strutted down the runway, located on Stage One of the main exhibition hall in the Family Living area on Saturday evening, Jan. 5. They sported apparel ranging from casual wear to business attire to formal dress.
Twenty-three seamstresses entered their fashion designs in the open show, and 32 designers displayed their masterpieces in the youth show. Many of the designers modeled their own outfits; some garments required a model to accurately sell the look to the judges. For example, some small, energetic children owned the runway for the children’s clothing division of the open show.
The judges — Judy Mentzer, Lancaster, Pa., Faye Strickler, New Holland, Pa., and Kathy Trapp, Camp Hill, Pa. — had difficult decisions to make, and were often conflicted, choosing between ties. Judging criteria, according to Farm Show guidelines, included “suitability of fabric for garment, suitability of garment for model and overall fit and construction of garment.”
Of the youth designers, Katherine Porter modeled an outfit she designed, winning over the judges, who named her creation best of the youth show.
“Tommy Hilfiger had a military fashion show,” Porter said of the Ready to Wear 2012 Fall Collection that inspired her idea for her outfit. The red, white and blue fabric colors of her piece set the patriotic mood.
Porter looked like she had traveled back in time to the World War II era, sporting a virgin wool red beret with a matching waist-length military coat decorated with a silver button above the chest and on either side of the front, service stripes on the shoulders, sleeve cuffs and a stand-up collar.
“A Hong Kong finish completes the jacket hem,” said the fashion show emcee, as Porter modeled the outfit.
Under Porter’s jacket, she revealed a navy shell blouse, printed with white fragmented polka dots. The knee-length, pleated A-line skirt, made of superfine wool gabardine, completed her outfit. A pearl necklace accessorized the ensemble.
Her second year in a row winning this honor, Porter, 16, of Bedford County, said she has been sewing for the past eight years.
Claiming her third consecutive year with the best of open show honor was Sharon Donahoe, also representing Bedford County.
Donahoe constructed business attire, which the announcer described as “a three-piece ensemble that featured a fully lined coat ... Issey Miyake jacket, and Anne Klein, fully lined, loose-fitting pants. The coat was created from a multi-colored, striped wool upholstery fabric. An embroidered lining was added to the pattern that features extended shoulders, standup color, side seam pockets and inseam buttonhole.”
“The semi-fitted jacket was stitched from burgundy Armani wool and features a standup collar, shaped front opening with button closing, seam details, welt pockets and two-piece sleeves with a nonworking vent. The straight-legged pants were created from a crepe burgundy Pendleton wool. They have a contour waistband, mock fly zipper and side front pockets.”
These winning garments, courtesy of their Bedford County designers, were displayed in the Family Living area for the remainder of the Pennsylvania Farm Show, suggesting to visitors that vogue options for occasions off the farm are just a stitch away.
A list of winning results follows:
Hand-crafted: Dolores Donahoe
Single piece garment (non-tailored): 1. Sarah Swank; 2. Sharon Donahoe; 3. Gabrielle Ochoco
Two-plus piece outfit (non-tailored): 1. Sheila Wiltshire; 2. Dolores Murray; 3. Sharon Donahoe
Tailored garment: 1. Sharon Donahoe; 2. Elaine Sensenig; 3. Sheila Wiltshire
Formal wedding: Alyssa Sitarik
Children’s clothing: 1. Nancy Brinser; 2. Dolores Murray; 3. Natalie Sensenig
Hand-crafted garment: 1. Angela Villanueva; 2. Hannah Scannell
Beginner project: 1. Faith Lynn Kuhn; 2. Elizabeth Bruner; 3. Abigail Bruner
Intermediate project: 1. Jade Wilson; 2. Ryleigh Steadman; 3. Dori Kralj
Senior 1 or 2 piece outfit: 1. Syndney Ochoco; 2. Elizabeth Wiltshire; 3. Cassandra Lauer
Senior tailored garment: 1. Katherine Porter; 2. Natalie Sensenig; 3. Rehanna Stepnoski
Senior party/formal: 1. Diana Sarnicke; 2. Madison Ochoco; 3. Amy Adelman