Young Adults With Down Syndrome Welcomed Into Fashion Community
A month after New York Fashion Week, another fashion show recently featured young models from all walks of life – Gigi’s Playhouse Fashion Show.
Gigi’s Playhouse is a national education and achievement center that aspires to encourage young people with Down Syndrome to be more engaged in their life. Gigi’s Playhouse Fashion Show provides an opportunity for young people with Down Syndrome to walk the runway in designer brand clothing. Models for the show receive personalized styling and coaching from the glam team.
“I think it’s clear from all of the models that it was a wild success, and it kind of blends the two intersections of my life, which are philanthropy and fashion,” said Eileen McClary, associate for Gigi’s Playhouse’s New York chapter and director of the fashion show, to the Associated Press (AP).
Models sported many different styles, with clothing items ranging from leather jackets to peach-colored tutus. One woman wore a T-shirt that read ‘Go Love Yourself.’ The crowd applauded as each individual strutted down the isle.
“It was really fun,” said model Laura Lyle to the AP. “I loved walking down [and] showing everybody the outfits, and I feel like we’re making a difference.”
An after party followed the show to fundraise for Gigi’s Playhouse’s initiatives. Without the helping hands from volunteers, Bloomingdale’s staff and those working the center, the show would not have been a success.
At the end of the show, McClary told the AP News, “It just shows the power and involvement of this (Down Syndrome) community, and I can’t wait to do more things with them. To me, it’s one of the most inspiring things that you could ever be a part of… All of these models are some of the happiest people I’ve ever come in contact with. And if you ever want to feel joy like I think this entire store felt tonight, you can be a part of this.”