This fashion show showcased a personal mental health journey. After suffering the loss of my grandmother and receiving my Bachelor's degree I decided to take a gap year. With nothing figured out and only my spirit guiding me I took all that I had and left. During one of the darkest periods in my life I couldn't see my future and all I had was my faith guiding me. I listened to what my spirit told me and moved to New York City. This experience included homelessness, going to the Harlem pantry for food, and quite literally running across the city in a suit to find work. I learned how to show humility, experienced an ego death, gained perspective on myself, and gained a love for my upbringing. I lived in Airbnb's in New Jersey, stayed on couches in the Bronx, slept on an office floor, until finally getting a room in Harlem after months of living on the edge. Throughout this entire journey the one thing that kept me going was my faith and newfound pride of being from Iowa. In a land so drastically different I was able to compare and contrast every facet of day-to-day life. Examining what I loved about Iowa compared to NYC, I defined what I loved about myself. In the end I discovered that no matter where I go in life, I'll always be from Davenport, Iowa, and there is nothing wrong with that. This was a journey of overcoming. A journey to self love.
There were many layers and metaphors that I wanted to showcase through physical space/location, set design, choreography, music, and fashion. We up-cycled and hand crafted our garments and stage items! We took donated items such as clothing, lamp shades and household items, paper and repurposed them for the models' outfits. A metaphorical tale featuring five cosmic beings wondering through space encounter a deity that brings them to unity ,leading them out of the lost period. I used my journal entries, poems, and concept art to recount my journey of healing. This show demonstrates how that looks, sounds, and feels. Hear more about the production process in my interview below with KHOI 89.1 Heart of Iowa Radio.