Recap of HOA Fashion Experience

One word to describe the weekend: Wow!

The weekend was full of good vibes, great people and positivity. It was amazing to see so many companies such as Dr. Martens, Lip Lock Gang, Tune Heads and 4th Lane Clothing come together to give Columbus an upscale fashion experience in a trendy manner.

Heart of It All is a group of Ohio State students who have identified a need to culminate the state’s fashion innovators into one event in Columbus to assist with the prominence of Ohio’s image in the industry. It’s crazy to think that Ohio is still considered “on the come up” of being considered a state full of fashion innovators like NYC or Chicago – especially with events like HOA happening.

I honestly find it hard to believe that this was HOA’s first big show and some of the models were getting their debut! I could see the HOA Fashion Experience being an annual event that will continue to grow and bring in people from the major fashion cities to see that Columbus can play the fashion game just as well – if not better.

HUGE thank you to HOA for allowing me to attend the events this week! If you missed it, you can follow HOA on TwitterInstagram and Facebook for pictures and videos!

Join 1girl at their first Graduation Celebration

Over the past year, I have been a 1girl program facilitator. 1girl is a non-profit organization that provides a unique, proven curriculum that empowers middle school girls to develop the skills they will need to be successful. The program is designed around five core skills: public speaking, creative problem solving, critical thinking, goal setting and conflict resolution.
1girl is hosting a graduation and facilitator celebration event to celebrate the work we have done this year and the girls we have been able to serve. I was fortunate enough to speak with Co-Founder and Executive Director, Shelby Kretz about the organization, the Graduation Celebration and the future of 1girl.
What was the inspiration behind starting 1Girl?  1girl was started out of a conversation between myself and two friends, Aditi Bansal and Sheila Maina, while we were in college. We started talking about the barriers girls face, especially low-income girls, in reaching their true potential. This conversation spurred many other conversations that eventually led to us deciding we wanted to do something to help support women and girls in reaching their dreams.
How did you come up with the name? – One of the first questions we asked ourselves was, “How will we define success?” We all agreed that if we could have an impact on just one girl’s life, it would be worth it. That is where the name 1girl came from.
What steps did you take to create your organization? We first researched how we wanted to structure the organization, and eventually we decided that becoming a non-profit was the best path for us. We completed the non-profit and 510(c)3 paperwork while we were putting together our first pilot program.
Who are the girls you serve? Backgrounds? Cultures? Ages? – We serve girls in grades 5-8. Generally, they come from at-risk and low-income neighborhoods, or they are attending poor performing schools. A majority of our girls are either African American or of Hispanic decent. However, we are always open to serving any middle school girls in need!
What types of programs does 1Girl have? – Our main program is our “Educating Future Leaders Program”. This program is run through existing after-school and summer programs. It is one semester long, twice a week for an hour. We work on skills like creative problem solving, critical thinking, and goal setting. The programs are facilitated by local college women, which allows them the opportunity to practice their own leadership skills.
Where do you hold the programs? – We work through pre existing after-school and summer sites, including schools, churches, recreation centers, summer camps, and anywhere else kids spend their time regularly. This is a great partnership as our sites are often in need of high quality, meaningful programming to offer their students. It also eliminates barriers for the girls, like transportation or additional costs.
How can people get involved? – There are a number of ways to get involved. We are looking to expand our committees, which are made up of Columbus community members interested in supporting 1girl by helping with events, marketing, finances, programs, fundraising, and more! It is a fun group of people working towards a shared mission. College students can get involved through their campus chapter of 1girl, or by starting a chapter if their school does not already have one. Being involved with the chapter will also open the opportunity for facilitating a program. Another great way to get involved is to support 1girl by donating to our work.
What is the purpose of the event next week? – The purpose of the event is to celebrate the success of our girls and facilitators. They have done amazing things this year, and we want to bring the community together to congratulate them. We will also be giving out our first 1girl scholarship to one of our dedicated volunteers.
Where do you see 1girl in the next 5-10 years? – I expect 1girl to be national in the next 5-10 years. We are expanding quickly through college campus chapters, and we expand that growth to continue. Our goal is to serve as many girls as possible with the most effective leadership training curriculum!
Once again, I am so happy to have been a part of this organization this past year and I would love it if you would come out and support at the Graduation Celebration on Wednesday, April 22, 2014 at The Bosco Center in Downtown Columbus. For more information and tickets, click here.

Heart of it All Fashion Experience: A 3 Day Fashion Showcase

I am happy to announce that TJE Communications will be a part of the Heart of it All Fashion Experience!

Heart of it All Fashion is comprised of a group of students at Ohio State. Their vision behind creating the organization is to provide a platform for designers, fashion institutions, clothing brands, boutiques and blogs; serving as a vessel for aspiring talent throughout Ohio to show off their skills cohesively and contribute to the fashion capital of the Midwest.

The founders, Aaron Carey and Nadiyah Harper, had a vision to add to the fashion culture and are doing so with the Heart of it All Fashion Experience.

The Heart of it All Fashion Experience is a three day showcase of design talent from Ohio institutions and clothing brands.

The showcase begins April 24th with the 17th Dissent Art Exhibition at Dude Locker and goes through April 26th with the Flight HOA 1803 Designer Fashion Show being held in the Archie Griffin Grand Ballroom.

There are also two events on April 25th:

HOA Avenue: This event will feature vendors and pop up shops from 12-5pm at 527 Hudson St.

Turbulence Street Wear Show Presented by Dr. Martens: Check out designs from established and emerging street wear brands, business and boutiques.

I’m very excited to be a part of this experience because I cannot recall seeing anything like it before. The best part is that it is being put on by young professionals and entrepreneurs! 

Be sure to grab your tickets to these events ASAP because I am sure they will sell out! 

Also, keep your eyes right here as I will be attending all of the events and posting videos and pictures.

Check out Heart of It All Fashion right here.