A Sherwood girl and superhero fan is a finalist in the 17th Annual Duck Brand Stuck at Prom Scholarship Contest to determine the best designs in creating prom attire made out of duct tape.
Sierra Rich is one of five single entrants and 10 couples who are competing for $50,000 in scholarship money for the best one-of-kind formalwear and accessories using Duck Tape-brand duct tape, the famed polyethylene-coated woven tape.
For the contest, the top 10 couples and top five single entrants were selected by a panel of judges based equally on workmanship, originality, use of colors, accessories and use of Duck Tape in the outfits with the public deciding the winners at stuckatprom.com.
(The tape has grown in popularity over the years from once being the favorite of household handymen to now creating fashion statements for young people.)
Rich said she got the inspiration for her creation from Harley Quinn, a fictional D.C. Comics supervillain.
"I am a big comic book lover and wanted to base my prom outfit off of her design," Rich wrote in a description of her creation on the Duck Tape contest website. "I used her colors of red, black, and white in my outfit."
Rich, who just graduated from Sherwood High School, went on to describe how she created the individual triangles out of tape to create a "skirt that looked layered, as each triangle can flare on its own." She said she added white to "pop against the black and red dress" in an effort to mimic jester hat bells favored by Harley Quinn.
"I found out about the contest through my mom who thought it would be a good idea for me since I love creating art out of various materials," said Rich. "I have also made a dress out of neckties and a Christmas tree, so I thought it would be fun to try Duck Tape."
She said it took about 240 hours to create the elaborate creation, made by using 18 rolls of Duck Tape.
For the contest, the top 10 couples and top five single entrants were selected by a panel of judges based equally on workmanship, originality, use of colors, accessories and use of Duck Tape in the outfits.
Not surprisingly, Rich will study product design when she attends Utah State University in August.
"I have been taking art classes since freshman year," she said. "I enjoy many forms of art such as ceramics, jewelry, photography, and fashion design.
Rich said she hasn't worn the dress outside of her house much because she hasn't found a place to wear it yet.
"It actually is very comfortable to wear even though it is stiff and feels like a bullet proof vest," she said. "The skirt actually moves fairly well for being made out of Duck Tape, which helps it feel more comfortable."
So does she think she will win any of the scholarship money?
"I feel optimistic in the fact that I put a lot of time and effort into making my dress and I incorporated small and difficult details (such as the checkerboard back or each individual triangle for the skirt)," she said. "Although, the other contestants put in a lot of effort too so who knows what will happen."
Voters have from now through July 5 to visit stuckatprom.com to cast votes but only one vote per day will be accepted.
Winners will be announced on July 12.
To see how the contest is progressing, follow @theduckbrand.