RevWear’s roots trace back to the early days of macgreen, McMaster University’s green service, and a small team of ambitious students willing to take a chance. In 2003, Sapphire Singh and Aimee Archer delivered the first RevWear fashion design workshop to a room of 25 students. The positive feedback and energy they received from those participants and the macgreen executive led to the first RevWear Fashion Show (2004, McMaster University).
This one-time event involving just over 20 students quickly caught the attention of creative, socially-conscious students from a variety of disciplines. In its second year, the RevWear Fashion Show (2005, McMaster University) grew into a production involving over 100 student volunteer coordinators, musicians, choreographers, performers, set designers, fashion artist, promoters, fundraisers and professional artists from Hamilton and the Greater Toronto Area. This show put macgreen and RevWear on the “campus” map as the apex of a week long festival entitled Earth & the Arts.
Each new student director and committee of dedicated volunteer community members, fashion artist and engaged students has taken the RevWear Fashion Show in a new direction. Funded by macgreen and a variety of community partners, the show has been performed to sold-out audiences at venues throughout the downtown core including the Art Gallery of Hamilton, Pearl Company Theater, Gallery and Fine Arts Facility, The Hamilton Wentworth District School Board Building, and vacant office space in Jackson Square Mall. Sapphire Singh has worked diligently as the fashion show’s Pubic Relations coordinator to forge a positive relationship with local mainstream and independent media, communicating the Revolution Wear philosophy to a cross section of the greater community. This includes recognition in the University edition of Maclean’s Magazine, three years running.
A significant branch of this evolution has been the creation of a RevWear artist collective. This collective consists of former McMaster students and community members living in the greater Hamilton area that have developed a name for themselves as DIY fashion and performance artists. The collective regularly collaborates to consult on and contribute to the annual RevWear Fashion Show, sell their work at markets, educate on the topic of fashion art and social justice, and deliver interactive workshops about DIY fashion art techniques and related sustainable textile arts (tanning hides, natural dyes, etc.)
Thousands of hours of volunteer coordination, labor, education and artist production have nourished this wearable art phenomenon into Hamilton’s largest and longest running fashion art event and the only providers of in-class instruction on sustainable DIY fashion.
RevWear, in the form of an artist collective and an annual fashion show, facilitates action according to a specific mantra: Create Change. Reuse Everything.
2004 – Volunteer photographers; McMaster University Student’s Union, McMaster University
2005 – Volunteer photographers; McMaster University Student’s Union, McMaster University
2006 – Volunteer photographers; Art Gallery of Hamilton
2007 – Photos by John Hall; Hamilton Wentworth District School Board of Education
2008 – Photos by Larry Strung; The Pearl Company
2009 – Photos by Ryan Tir can be found at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ryan_tir/sets/72157614723952868/show/ & http://flickr.com/photos/ryan_tir/sets/72157614600933867/show/ ; The Pearl Company
2010 – Photos by Paul Maxam; Former Bank of Montreal Space, Above Jackson Square Mall
2011 – Photos by Ingelbert can be found at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ingymedia/sets/72157626259604944/ ;The Pearl Company
2012 – Photos by Larry Strung; Lyric Theatre