July 20, 2012
Jennifer Tran. (Courtesy Sandra Tran)

Jennifer Tran. (Courtesy Sandra Tran)

'All the News That’s Printed, Fits'

WASHINGTON — A homemade dress that was last year’s Halloween costume has turned into this year’s social media sensation for a Falls Church, Va., teenager.

During a visit to the Newseum on July 14, Jennifer Tran, 15, of Falls Church, Va., wore the pleated dress she made out of issues of The Washington Post and The New York Times.

The creation, which gives new meaning to newspaper design, gained instant media attention and positive reviews after photos of Tran posing in the dress were posted on the Newseum’s Twitter and Facebook pages July 17.   

“Awesome,” said Bethany Shae Collins on Facebook. “I want a dress like that,” said Paris Achen. “All the News That’s Printed, Fits,” commented Doug Finch, who should seriously consider participating in the Newseum’s headline writing contest Tuesdays on Facebook.

A story about Tran and her dress appeared July 20 in The Washington Post and in The Huffington Post. Tran, who will be a sophomore at McLean High School next fall, said she was surprised by all the attention.

“I thought maybe the dress would be cool to show people, and maybe they’d think it was cool, but nothing on this scale,” she said.

Making the dress took two weeks, which Tran said was sewed mostly by hand and with the use of a sewing machine in a couple of places. The visit to the Newseum marked the second time she wore it.

Tran said her interest in the environment and her passion for fashion gave her the idea to create a dress made out of newspapers.

“I really wanted to do something eco-friendly, and newspapers are aesthetically beautiful,” she said.

Tran said she considered selling the dress but now would like to donate it to the Newseum. Carrie Christoffersen, director of collections, said the dress will be on the agenda at the next curatorial staff meeting.

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