Nothing retiring about this parade

MATHEW GROCOTT
Last updated 07:52 14/08/2012
Olive Tree
WARWICK SMITH/Fairfax NZ
DRESSED TO IMPRESS: Former dressmakers Una Kilmister, left, and Ellen Herbert check out the fabric and style of Kate O’Neil’s gown as Freyberg Hugh School pupils model their gowns for Olive Tree residents.

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Residents of a Palmerston North retirement home had a ball as they checked out the latest in fashion for high school formals.

Eleven Freyberg High School pupils modelled their outfits from their recent school ball for about 25 residents of the Olive Tree Retirement Complex yesterday.

The nine girls were quizzed on where they had bought their gowns, what they had cost and what they were made of, while the two boys were also fussed over - the turquoise shoes of one garnering much attention.

Residents Una Kilmister and Ellen Herbert, both former dressmakers, said they enjoyed the annual visit from the high schoolers, though admitted fashions had changed.

"The materials today are totally different. I wouldn't want to sew with them," Mrs Herbert said.

"No I'd rather just admire them," Mrs Kilmister added.

Mrs Herbert said the dresses were of a "different style" to when she was a teenager, but both women agreed that was to be expected, and not a necessarily a negative.

"You can see a big difference," Mrs Kilmister said.

They were both fans of "longer, more traditional" gowns, saying they were more sophisticated.

Freyberg High School deputy principal Linda Smith said she had kept an eye out during the July 21 ball for girls who could take part in yesterday's fashion parade.

"We've been doing it about three years now. I look for a dozen or so dresses, different lengths, colours and styles. The girls are always happy to help out. They do a good job engaging with the residents."

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- Manawatu Standard

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