It may not be the definition of high fashion, but for a sold-out audience Thursday at Object Runway 5 at the Bear Tooth Theatrepub in Anchorage, it was the highlight of Alaska's fashion scene.

Sixty models strutted 70 designs from 54 different artists, wearing not only cloth but materials as diverse as 10,000 plastic drinking straws, wood, rubber bands, fiber optic cables and feminine hygiene products.

Crammed into the balcony of the theater, the models and their designers painstakingly strove to assemble the pieces, which more often than not resembled junk instead of clothes.

Using hot glue, spray adhesive and electrical wire -- and sometimes requiring an entire team to assemble the outfit on the model -- the pieces gradually came together before the show started.

As the first 10 models walked the custom-designed white runway, the remaining models, some of them designers themselves, cheered them on from the balcony.

The annual event is a collaboration between the Alaska Design Forum and the International Gallery of Contemporary Art.

A panel of three judges awarded designer Sarah Davies and her models Melissa Banker and Katrielle Rios the top prize for "Perched Raven," a three-part piece constructed from a mix of materials that included cow parsnip, packing paper and discarded window screen, among others.

Second place went to designer Sheila Wyne, who also tied with Ruby Lee Ramert for the audience choice award.

Third place was awarded to L. Saunders McNeill. Last year's winner, Enzina Marrari, was fourth.

Contact Alaska Dispatch Multimedia Editor Loren Holmes at loren(at)