The Locust Valley High School Fashion Club helped raise awareness and funds for breast cancer research by participating in the annual Bra-ha-ha competition sponsored by the Karen Allen Donovan Foundation. The club has participated in this event for several years.
The club members, as well as artists and fashion designers, designed creative interpretations of bras that were displayed on mannequins as part of the event held in a photography studio in Manhattan earlier this year.
The creations from Locust Valley included “Inner Beauty” by Nitha Paulus and Ferah Shaikh; “We’ve Done It” by Kendall Morfis; and “Frida Brahlo” by Victoria Campanella, Danya Karch, Jake Lachman and Grace Yeager.
Fashion Club adviser Melanie Mooney said the students spent countless hours brainstorming and creating their bras, which symbolized strength, courage, empowerment and beauty. The students held bake sales to raise funds for the cause. “This was our best year yet with our most creative bras and I continue to be both inspired and proud of my students,” she said.
Nitha and Ferah said their design was inspired by the version of Cinderella that was scrubbing floors dressed in rags, before she ever stepped foot in a castle. With “Inner Beauty,” they aimed to redefine the qualities seen as beautiful, describing Cinderella as beautiful in the way she carried herself, with humility, kindness and dignity, whether she was dressed up or not. They remarked that there are also many women battling breast cancer with enormous amounts of patience and courage, which can only be described as beautiful.
Kendall used denim in her design to represent hardworking men and women. She explained that denim is long-lasting and tough and will never go out of style. In comparison, she said that standing up for what you believe in and working hard to achieve a goal no matter the circumstances is a very tough thing to do.
“The traits of hard work and perseverance will never go out of style, due to their rewarding benefits” Kendall said. “To women who have breast cancer, your determination and drive inspires this bra, “We’ve Done It,” to show that people have survived this cancer in the past and will continue to in the future.”
“Frida Brahlo” is a tribute to Frida Kahlo, the Mexican painter, whose name alone is synonymous with artist, woman, feminist and rebel. Danya, Grace, Jake and Victoria thought their bra would represent breast cancer by recognizing the physical and emotional pain that this artist endured in her life. They explained that she was never afraid to defy female beauty expectations and gender stereotypes. The artist’s unplucked eyebrows, mustache, men’s clothing and tequila drinking all defied gender expectations and symbolized her fight for equality of the sexes. The student-artists wanted their design to represent the same things.
Congratulations to the entire Fashion Club for making a difference with its thoughtful creativity.