Enriched by differences – that’s been true for my life practically since the day I was born. I come from an immigrant background, attended a public grade school and have grown up interacting with various languages and perspectives on the world. My entire existence is intercultural.

My mother and grandmother, both seamstresses, are responsible for my early introduction to fashion and sewing, for which I quickly developed a passion. I knew very early on that I would one day become a fashion designer. This dream lit a fire in me and gave me the motivation I needed to study the tailoring trade and complete my degree.

Following my high school graduation, I began apprenticing as a tailor at Fahmoda in Hannover, Germany, and then started studying fashion design at a college in Hannover.

During that time, I also started volunteering at a local aid organization. Once a week, I assisted Sophie, who is blind due to a childhood neurodegenerative disease. This experience made a huge impact on me both personally and professionally. It solidified my aspiration to combine innovative fashion with social engagement.

And it inspired me to focus on the topic of blindness for my bachelor thesis, SAME:SAME, which ultimately won several awards. For this research, I collaborated with a team of people, some of whom are blind and some with severe visual impairments. On the basis of our work together, I developed several design-specific solutions that made it easier for them to interact with fashion. At the same time, the designs are interesting for sighted people as well. One example of this is reversible garments, which you can wear inside out or backwards.

I know from my experience working in the fashion industry that this sector is only slowly beginning to open up to ideas about sustainability and inclusion. That’s just one more reason why I’m committed to contributing my know-how to socially conscious, inclusive fashion projects.

My wishes for the future are that I could use my design to access systems that make everyday tasks easier for blind people and people with visual impairments – and to motivate others to shift their mindsets. I have a great deal of fun developing and researching new solutions with my target group in a design-thinking process. The most important thing for me is to create fashion that is innovative and suits everyday needs, and do so in collaboration with the people who will be wearing my clothes.

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Fabiana und Anna stehen nebeneinander und lächeln in die Kamera. Mit Text, einfach Vielfalt, Workshops für Inklusion

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Fabiana und Anna