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Van Outen adds glamour to Recycle Now Week

A national recycling campaign currently running across England (from June 2-8), has set out to prove that green issues have “never been more glamorous”.

TV presenter and West End star Denise Van Outen has teamed up with leading “ethical” fashion designer Gary Harvey to launch Recycle Now Week – a national “week of action” (formerly known as “the BIG recycle”) jointly organised and funded by WRAP (the Waste & Resources Action Programme) in partnership with materials recycling organisations British Glass, Novelis and Recoup.

Harvey, formerly creative director for Levis Europe, has designed a series of recycled couture outfits which have been modelled by Van Outen for the government-funded campaign, which will see hundreds of recycling events held countrywide. The fashion collection includes a “technicolour dream dress” made from recycled cans, bottle tops, cardboard packaging, glass beads and plastic bags; a “tulle” skirt made from 30 newspapers, and a tiered ball gown, made from 42 pairs of used Levi 501s.

Harvey says: “I wanted to show that it’s possible to create something useful and beautiful from waste materials. You don’t have to be a designer to do this. Every time we recycle we give an everyday item a new lease of life.”

WRAP says consumer research undertaken for Recycle Now Week reveals that over half of consumers “feel guilty’ for not doing more to protect the environment. The nation’s top causes of “green guilt” are apparently throwing food away (41%), using plastic bags at the supermarket (33%), throwing packaging away “instead of recycling it” (28%), leaving the TV on stand-by (27%), and travelling short distances in the car (23%).

Taking part in the fourth Recycle Now Week to date are local authorities, community groups, supermarkets and businesses.

Denise Van Outen models, for Recycle Now Week 2007, the “technicolour dream dress” made largely from recycled plastic bags, cans, bottle tops and cardboard packaging IMG4017copy