Onwards and upwards for Qualicum Beach student

Megan Boyd carries home a mitful of scholarship loot

KSS grad Megan Boyd with her prom date Justin Tryon.  Her stunning green chiffon dress took her three weeks to make and was one of the red carpet favorites.

KSS grad Megan Boyd with her prom date Justin Tryon. Her stunning green chiffon dress took her three weeks to make and was one of the red carpet favorites.

Megan Boyd has a passion for fashion but it’s not likely her designs will be featured on the runways in Paris or Milan.

The 17-year-old Kwalikum Secondary School (KSS) grad is the recipient of three scholarships that she will use towards her post secondary studies in fashion design.

She is going to spend a year working on her portfolio before she attends Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Vancouver where she will work towards a bachelor of design in fashion and Technology.

Boyd actually graduated a semester early taking several courses through CEAP so she could get a head start on earning money to pay for her tuition.

The go-getter has some cash in her education account thanks to the trio of well deserved bursaries she was recently awarded.

She was the recipient of the Adelaide Black Scholarship for $1000, the Donn Larson Memorial Vocational Scholarship for $2,000 and $750 from the Quilting Guild.

Boyd who has been sewing since she was a little girl said her Home Economics teacher at KSS Eileen Lo played a big role in her decision to choose a career in fashion design.

“Ms. Lo is an awesome teacher.  She was a big help in my life.  I learned how to draft which is making your own patterns and that was all Ms. Low.  She also pushed me to do the Skills Canada which was the deciding factor for what I would do in my life,” confessed Boyd.

The Skills Canada Competition involved students from all over Canada presenting their talent in a number of technical and trade skills.

Boyd didn’t win a medal at the April 18 event in Abbotsford but she said it was a terrific experience despite the intense environment she had to work in.

“It was probably the most stressful thing I have ever done in my life but it was the deciding factor,” she confessed when describing what was involved in the contest.

“We did eight hours of straight sewing.  We had to make a bustier top which was a pattern we already had.  Then we had to draft, design and make a skirt on top of that.”

She said at the regionals she had to draft, design and sew a skirt in five hours but it was nothing in comparison to competing at provincials.

“Regionals was really stressful but it wasn’t as bad as I expected.  Provincials was really hard,” she admitted.

The fact that Boyd even made it to provincials is an accomplishment according to Lo.

“For her to go to Skills Canada is huge.  Her project was exceptional.  The design was difficult to execute and she nailed it with very little assistance,” Lo boasted about her student.

Lo agreed that Boyd is one of the most talented students she has had the pleasure to teach.

“She is bright and creative…just the way her mind works is different from most kids.  She makes it work on fabric and it is quite neat.  She’s also got the technical skills,” Lo declared.

During her time at KSS Boyd was also an active volunteer according to Lo who pointed out the grad’s many achievements.

“She won the outstanding service award in Grade 11.  She has always made the honor role.  She has a natural confidence and has a positive I can do attitude.  When I first met her in Grade nine I could tell right away she had great leadership potential and I knew she would be awesome.”

The well rounded student also has her mom to thank for keeping her focussed.

Boyd also has her mom to thank for keeping her focussed.

“I was sewing since I was four years old.  I was always interested in it.  My mom used to sew some of our clothes when we were younger and I got my first sewing machine when I was seven,” she explained.

Although fashion is front and centre for Boyd she emphasized she is not caught up in the hype and glamour side of it.

The down to earth teenager agreed that she doesn’t see a future for herself creating high end exclusive haute couture garments and there isn’t any fashion designer that she wants to emulate.

“I like to do my own thing…ideas just come to my head.  I don’t focus on other designers.  I am not super intrigued by the fashion world to be honest.  I think that will be the hardest part when I go to Kwantlen because we have to be involved in the Vancouver fashion industry.”

The Vancouver fashion industry is growing exponentially with some creative and dynamic talent making an impression from both established and emerging designers.

Boyd agreed that the fashion scene in Vancouver is awesome and clothes that are made locally are worth spending the extra money on but she would rather open up her own little clothing store and have her own designs that are affordable.

“In the world of fashion design it is so money based and so expensive.  I like to shop second hand and take older clothes and re-make them,” she expressed.

Boyd works at Kit & Kaboodle a consignment boutique in Parksville where she said she gets inspired every day.

“That is super cool for me because I get to see so many different clothes come in from so many different eras and it is really inspiring.  I would like to go towards more affordable rather than having a real prestigious label.  Its not about making money,” she emphasized.

Boyd will be receiving her high school diploma during the KSS commencement ceremony on June 28.