Aten year old girl from New Yorker who was teased at school is likely making her bullies incredibly jealous these days — because how many of them can say they’ve shown a collection of clothing at New York Fashion Week?
Egypt Ufele, who goes by Ify, didn’t let those fifth-grade bullies at her Queens school keep her down, and instead took the very thing they made fun of her for and used it to make a name for herself in the fashion world.
‘I turned negative attention into positive attention,’ she told the Today show, shortly after showing her debut collection at Fashion Week this weekend.
Ify said that some of the other kids would give her a hard time for her weight, explaining: ‘I was bullied and they called me all kinds of names. One time I got stabbed with a pencil.’
Instead of wallowing and changing herself because of their taunts, with encouragement from her mom and grandma, she started focusing her energy on fashion
She took the word ‘chubby’ back — creating her own plus-size fashion line that she calls ChubiiLine (pronounced ‘chubby line’).
‘People tell me I’m good at fashion,’ Ify said. ‘Sometimes I give my models ideas, and then we agree on it, and I end up making it.’
Ify’s been doing the work all along and, according to her grandma Nellie Rembert, takes the process very seriously.
First, the fifth grader started sewing clothes for her dolls by hand. Then, she graduated to grandma’s sewing machine, sketching and designing clothes for kids and adults.
‘She comes out of school, goes straight into homework, and when other kids are out playing, she’s either cutting patterns or she’s creating new ideas,’ her mom, Dr. Reba Perry, told NY1.
Though there have been other children to show collections at Fashion Week in the past, Ify is the only one to have dressed plus-size women.