Do you wear clothes? If the answer is yes — and we sure hope it is — UP’s fashion club, We Wore That, wants you at their first fashion show. Featuring a line-up of full denim ensembles, the show is aimed at increasing visibility for sexual assault awareness.
You can catch the show on April 22 from 1-3 p.m. on the terrace behind The Commons. There will be a $5 entrance fee for donation to the Sexual Assault Resource Center (SARC). Attendees are more than encouraged to break out their best denim for the occasion.
Started last semester by co-presidents Anne-Marie Brownlow, Mia Anderson and Anna Fallon, We Wore That is already making an impression in the UP community with their bold and creative Instagram presence and fun events centered around clothing, sustainable fashion and being unapologetically yourself.
Definitely no stranger to advocacy, the club has already been involved in multiple events on campus centered on education and sustainable fashion. These have included their regular clothing swaps and a collaborative display with Students Against Sexual Assault (SASA) on clothing and consent.
Their fashion show will be no different. Collaborating with SASA, SARC and Basic Stitches, the show will be a display of solidarity and fashion. There will be segments led by some of the organizations and student designers speaking about National Denim Day — a day of action and awareness around sexual violence — and how attendees can get involved.
“If you just see someone wearing denim then this show can lead to a conversation, reducing the stigma around [sexual assault],” Fallon said. “We're able to talk about these topics with a channel of clothing to create a safe space.”
The entire show has been made possible by the dedication of We Wore That club members.
“When we first came up with the idea for the show, we knew that it was really important that our members were very involved in it,” Anderson said. “And we wanted to give our members an opportunity to use their skills in whatever they're passionate about.”
From makeup and hair to clothing lines and decor, every member's talents have been put to use.
“Something so special about our club is that UP doesn't really have an outlet for fashion or a lot of creative arts,” Brownlow said. “I think that our club has done a really good job of bringing that to UP.”
Staying true to their creative image, everything used in the show is secondhand, from designs to decorations, members have used all their resources to show that it is 100% possible to create a fully sustainable fashion show.
One club member, Sonya Slyapich has even created her own line for the show with six unique designs inspired by the idea that sexual assault can happen to anyone anywhere.
“A lot of the designs are supposed to portray how [sexual assault] affects LGBTQ people, married people,” Slyapich said. “There's designs that represent that you should be able to wear what you want to wear and not have to worry about sexual assault.”
The show brought out a lot of creativity for designers, and the theme was especially inspiring for many.
“I was really excited just to be able to actually have the opportunity to create things and see them actually come to life.” Slyapich said. “Having the show be centered around sexual assault, I think it makes it even more meaningful, especially to people on campus.”
Not slowing down any time soon, the club has big plans for the future.
“This is the first show but definitely not the last,” Fallon said. “We want this to continue and be a starting point, like an annual thing."
Using their platform on campus, We Wore That hopes to continue their advocacy for years to come, using fashion as a medium for change and encouraging UP to be more active in their support of sexual assault awareness.
“I think also, especially in college, a lot of small microaggressions about assault are really normalized,” Fallon said. “Whether that's drinking culture, party culture, even dress codes, there's a lot of small things that really kind of normalize that behavior.”
With plenty of causes and creative members, We Wore That’s presence isn’t going anywhere. Tickets for the fashion show can be bought in advance at this link.
Chiara Profenna is the DEI editor for The Beacon. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.