YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – A unique event with an inspiring message was held at a new venue Wednesday evening.
Youngstown State University’s Everybody Fashion Show was canceled last year due to COVID-19. This year, it was moved to the Youngstown Foundation Amphitheatre.
For the last eight years, professor Jennifer Frank and her fashion merchandising class have organized a fashion show for everyone.
With COVID-19 still around, a big change had to be made to this year’s event.
“It’s normally inside but due to COVID, we had to move it outside. So that is the biggest difference. We’re fighting the elements today, but we’re going to have a great show regardless of what happens,” Frank said.
The Everybody Fashion Show was started in remembrance of a YSU student.
“Tonight is the first outdoor Everybody Fashion Show. The show was started in 2013 to honor a student, Danielle Peters, who passed away from an eating disorder,” Frank said.
Frank believes her show gives hope to those fighting through their own issues.
“It’s such an important cause. There’s so many people that struggle with body image issues and if we can help one person each year, then that’s why we have to keep doing it,” Frank said.
Each year, the show starts with a speech from someone who has survived an eating disorder. Corinne Zielinski delivered Wednesday night’s remarks, saying society’s expectations can have a devastating impact on so many.
“I think that society’s standards of someone who’s very skinny and small and a certain height… So the fact that we’re able to have this opportunity of ‘every body is good at any size’ is a great opportunity,” Zielinski said.
Frank hopes her show’s message inspires people to love themselves for who they are.
“We want everybody to realize that they’re beautiful, no matter your size or your shape, and that’s why you’ll see models of all ages, shapes and sizes on our runway tonight,” Frank said.