Claudia Pegus Debuts Trapped for Fashion Week

Claudia Pegus Debuts Trapped for Fashion Week

Personal | Judette Coward-Puglisi

May 29, 2009



During  Fashion Week (Trinidad and Tobago) which begins today, skinny women and chiselled men will walk the ramp at the Hyatt showcasing dream collections from some of the country”s top designers. 

But in the audience, as Claudia  Pegus watches the debut of her CPFS line after its six-year hiatus, she will  recall that less than  a week ago she was held at gunpoint along with some of  her employees when three bandits (two were female) brandishing a gun  entered her Woodbrook atelier  with a promise to kill. 

After 15 minutes of terror and ravishing the contents of the design shop,  the thieves did not leave behind body bags but they left instead gaping  scars on the designer’s memory which even as she cut, pinned, and tucked material onto the mannequins transformed the nature of her debut collection.

“When I started designing the CPFS line just before Carnival, it was going to be called Illusion.  I wanted to play on my strong reputation as a couturier and how it had obscured the fact that I did ready-to -wear with ease. The collection was a poke at me, a reminder to others.   It was supposed to be fun and beautiful and light."

When the Pegus line debuts today, it will be anything but.

“After the incident, I felt (and still feel) emotionally drained and as I resumed work the pieces in the collection began to take a different form. On hearing the news of what happened, many people called to commiserate. As we spoke I began to realise how many of my friends and even acquaintances had been direct victims of crime. Many are living in fear. It’s like we all feel trapped. The well to do and the middle class are trapped, no matter how high the wall or strong the burglar proof. Perhaps even the bandits are trapped in their ignorance and their environment. But mostly I felt that my sense of safety and my well being had been ripped away"

Pegus’ CPFS line had a new name and direction.  

Since last Friday, Claudia and her staff have worked non-stop to produce Trapped, a collection, carefully constructed with strings and ties and rope.   Skinny female models and chiselled men will be utilised to make strong anti-crime messages.  Masks will be worn. Spray paint will be utilised and a character used to specifically to convey the message of confinement will surprise and shock.  

"Can crime inspire? 

“I think it makes you feel angry and ravished and despairing but I also I think creativity can come from all kinds of sources. This is a very strong line," said Pegus. 

Trapped comes on the heels of the designer’s recent show of a stunning collection of dresses at the recently concluded Fifth Summit of the Americas Fashion. 

Last week, Pegus was tied and ordered to lie face down on the floor. She was later taken around the shop with a gun pointed to the back of her head to identify valuables.

 None of the bandits wore masks. All were under 25. 


6 thoughts on “Claudia Pegus Debuts Trapped for Fashion Week

  1. Judette,

    I’m now an avid follower of your blog and hats off on the fine work you continue to do. That being said it is reprehensible that is under these conditions that I write to you….

    I continue to be disgusted by the state of crime in our beautiful Trinidad and Tobago. Water taxis and overpasses are great but mean nothing if they are continuously overshadowed by lawlessness in our nation’s cities, towns and villages.

    The recent murder of a member of the legal fraternity in her home and the assassination of a young man while he slept, both in south Trinidad, the daily shootings branded by the police in the communities or Movant and Laventille had saddened me ….yes because they have occurred BUT more so because we as a people have gotten so used to it that in a week…and I’ll give some amongst us some credit and say in two weeks these lost lives will be forgotten.

    As I write this I wonder what’s the point to it and is it worth it……. the long and short of it is YES….. it only takes one voice and one other to listen for the beginnings of a movement to be born…. we need to do our part…so here’s my commitment to you

    I will look out for my neighbor, co-worker, friend and the guy standing beside me as I wait in line at the dry cleaner, without expecting a miracle one of those people will one day soon do the same….1 will turn to 3, 3 to 8 , 8 to 22…… Each of us will make a difference.

    Guess I just needed to vent……thanks for reading.


  2. It seems as if crime has been pushed into high gear this year, like the criminals have doubled, tripled their ‘efforts’ and the police/gov’t have diminished theirs.
    its really sad, frightening and makes you angry and yes trapped is a great description of how the law abiding citizens feel each day.

  3. One of my co-workers here at the office was also held up at gunpoint, he and his family, believe its the same bastards who did that to Claudia. Its a big shame, what is the blimp really about?

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