Wednesday, June 25, 2014 | FEATURE
Happily ever after - Luck student’s designs win awards
Disney-themed swimwear could earn big scholarships
Greg Marsten | Staff writer
LUCK – Sometimes, watching cartoons can pay off.
Recent Luck High School graduate Megan Bartylla is evidence of that, as she is hoping to utilize a design theme developed from kids cartoons to enhance her future career in the fashion apparel design field.
Bartylla is using an old-fashioned cookout this Saturday at Wayne’s Foods Plus in Luck to help raise enough funds to get a leg up on her work in the apparel industry, as she is bound for San Antonio, Texas, to take part in a competition at the Future Career and Community Leaders of America national gathering.
While some people may recognize the recent Cardinal grad from her humorous drama club performances in Luck school plays, Bartylla takes her fashion design very seriously, but she also had some fun with her latest designs, which are a whimsical line of female swimwear, based on cartoon characters.
“I based each (swim) suit after a different Disney princess,” Bartylla said, adding that she actually brought one of the final designs to fruition. “Yeah, I made the Little Mermaid (swimsuit).”
She said the FCCLA competition has events where students design and present projects in various categories.
“They are mostly home economics-related (projects), so there is cooking and sewing and such,” she said. “The competition starts at a regional level, and participants have to get a certain score on their project to go on and compete at a state level. At state, you present your project again, and the student with the best score in their category at state can go compete with the top scorers in the other states at a national level.”
She is no stranger to earning recognition in FCCLA competitions, and she has gone to the national level two years in a row now, and has taken her past competitions to heart in her latest efforts.
“This year and last year I competed in the fashion design category. I had to design and illustrate a six-piece fashion line and construct one of the designs as a sample to be worn,” she said, including the design mock-ups for her swimwear line. “I also had to make the pattern for the design and make a business plan for the collection.”
While she stepped outside her comfort zone a titch this year, having some fun with the theme, she is hoping to make the most of the honors and recognition.
“I made a dress last year, but I wanted to do something different this time,” Bartylla said with a laugh. “Last year I made it (to nationals) as well and we went to Nashville, and this year we are going to San Antonio. It is a lot of fun to meet other people who are as passionate as you in your category.”
While Bartylla graduated from high school a few weeks ago, she is still excited about the FCCLA national competition, and is hoping she makes enough from the cookout this weekend to attend the so-called STAR national event in San Antonio in the coming weeks.
“There are also some pretty big scholarships you can win!” she noted.
Bartylla is enrolled at UW-Stout for apparel design and development and is set to start college this fall. While she has gone almost as far as she can with FCCLA through the school district, the cost for the FCCLA nationals event is hers to cover, and she is trying to earn the money to pay her way to Texas for that competition. Hence the cookout at Wayne’s Foods Plus in Luck this Saturday, June 28.
Who knows, someday Bartylla’s signature designs may be seen on the runways of Paris ... or even on the beaches of Polk County.