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"Coffee-couture" - the dress made from drink pods

The 'coffee-pod" dress Photo: Birmingham City University

A university graduate who created a dress made from redesigned coffee pods is showcasing his work to shoppers at one of the high street's biggest stores.

Rhys Ellis from Kings Norton came up with the idea to use the drink pods after studying at the Politecnico di Milano design school alongside world-renowned tailor, Gualtiero Fornetti in Milan, as part of his undergraduate degree in Fashion Design at Birmingham City University.

Designer Rhys Ellis Credit: Birmingham City University

"The year in Italy was a great experience for me. Not only was I being trained by one of the world’s most distinguished and experienced bespoke tailors who, at the age of 74-years-old, teaches some of the most up-and-coming talent from brands such as Armani and Versace, but there is a coffee culture that I hadn’t seen before".

– Rhys Ellis, designer

Rhys says he creates each of his dresses by hand, using around 6,000 repurposed coffee pods. His unique collection is now on show at the Selfridges store in Birmingham for the next three months - and store staff say fashion-conscious shoppers are noticing his work.

Rhys' collection is part of the store's "Material World" project which looks at how materials are made and repackaged in other forms.

The coffee-pod dress seen on the catwalk Credit: Birmingham City University

“To see my work on display at Selfridges is just incredible. I used to work in one of the concessions at the Birmingham store when I was studying and now to see my work on display in my city just makes me so proud”.

– Rhys Ellis, designer

“The dresses have only been on display for a few days and already many of our customers are stopping and noticing them.

For us to be able to proudly display and support the work of an upcoming and talented Birmingham fashion designer in his home store is an honour.

We know that Rhys is going to be moving onto incredible things in his future. We’ll be proud to have been able to help in our own way".

– Sam Watts, general manager at Selfridges Birmingham

Rhys' work comes as the world's biggest designers prepare to descend on the capital for this month's London Fashion Week.