By Anistacia Aragon
Ani is a Menaul School senior. Last year while holding the New Mexico Teen title, she had the opportunity to go into various elementary school classes to give lessons about self-love, helping children understand their worth. Ani has been a Ballet Folklorico Dancer for 16 years. She has taught dance to students from ages 5-85. Ani has been modeling for 8 years; but became more serious in the industry in the last 4 years. Her first Fashion show was an American Girl Doll show where she dressed up as Josefina. Ani recently came back from a trip to Paris where she modeled in an Indigenous fashion show. She is still overwhelmed by and grateful for this exciting experience.
I AM; is a suicide awareness and benefit fashion show, that will feature over 60 models who will be showcasing fashion designs from 16 designers from across the four corners area.
As a benefit fashion show we will be donating all of the proceeds collected by ticket sales to local Suicide Prevention Programs in New Mexico. We will be using fashion to bring awareness, as well as empower those who attend along with anyone who may see the photos or videos from the event. We will have several speakers and entertainers who will be sharing their experiences or thoughts on suicide.
Fashion is one of the most influential forms of art today.
When you think of Fashion you think of pieces that have had the most impact on you, the pieces that have connected to you the most.
“Fashion has the ability to change and shape lives through its personal connection to us all.”Google Arts & Culture
We often associate the fashion industry as something negative, but I want to highlight something more important. I did some research on impactful fashion shows and found the following: All the most impactful fashion shows had a strong message. Every single designer had something that they wanted to show. They wanted to make a statement with their clothes. This is what I want to accomplish with my show.
I am the current title holder of World Latina Teen USA with the platform of Teen Suicide awareness. I have experienced, first-hand, the devastation of losing someone to suicide. The one big thing I hope to come out of this show is to educate.
“The goal is to educate people on what suicide is, what the signs are of depression, how to help others who are dealing with depression or suicidal thoughts, or even how to get help. With this show I hope to bring awareness to suicide and spread it to everyone I can.”Ani A.
What It Is
I AM; will be featuring over 60 models from New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, Texas, Kentucky, Washington and California. There will be special appearances from Miss Indian New Mexico, World Latina Miss, World Latina Ms. World Latina New Mexico Teen, World Latina New Mexico Miss, as well as Mrs. Senora New Mexico. The designers that will be showing their designs are from New Mexico, Arizona and Colorado.
These designers include:
Sherleen YellowHair (Sheel Designs)
LuMen Martinez (The LuMen Collection)
Cilena Trujillo (Bosswear Official)
Marian M-ike (Breezy Designs)
Aj Nequatewa (Tuve’hongnom Creations)
Jolonzo Goldtooth (JG Indie)
Shirley Pino (Red Wing Collection)
Jen Jamez (JJamezdesigns)
Madison Vanderling (MadVan Designs)
Loren Aragon (ACONAV)
Bree Salaz (Bree Collection)
We will also be having surprise designers who will be showcasing I AM; merch along with a few other special surprises. All of our vendors will be donating an item for a raffle in which all proceeds will also go to Suicide Prevention Programs in New Mexico.
Suicide is a very stigmatized topic even though it is the second leading cause of death amongst adolescents. With this show as well as with the title of World Latina Teen USA, I want to help others in as many ways possible.