Local moms start summer camp for young fashionistas

Photo Courtesy Of Durga Kalavagunta

Fledgling fashionista Richa Krishna surveys some fabric selections for the upcoming DezignKidz camp.

Durga Kalavagunta of Los Altos and Kathy Bonte of Mountain View, Almond School moms with a background in the design and textile industries, are putting their professional skills to a new use this summer with DezignKidz, a fashion camp for elementary schoolchildren.

"I see clothing as a form of art," said Kalavagunta, who added that she has been fascinated by fabrics since she designed clothes for her dolls as a child.

"The goal of DezignKidz is to help elementary school-age children channel their abundant creative energies into this rarely used medium that we'd like to call ‘wearable art' ... while teaching them some practical, real-world skills," Kalavagunta said.

DezignKidz has scheduled four one-week programs starting July 6, 13, 20 and 24 at Springer School, 1120 Rose Ave., Mountain View.

Grades 1-3 are scheduled 9 a.m. to noon and grades 4-6, 1-4 p.m. Cost for the week camp is $199, plus $25 for materials.

Budding designers will take a garment from concept to completion and receive age-appropriate lessons in sketching/illustration, pattern making, garment construction, sewing, finishing and embellishing techniques.

At the camp's conclusion, DezignKidz will bring a touch of Bryant Park to the Bay Area and stage a fashion show for the campers to showcase their creations.

"If TV shows like ‘Project Runway' are any indication, there seems to be a lot of interest in this area," said Bonte, a fan of the series. "We've actually had several moms say we should offer a class for adults."

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