While the pros are preparing to showcase their collections at Fashion Week, a budding designer from Queens is making quite a name for herself. She's only 10 years old. NY1's Cheryl Wills filed the following report.
There are not many fifth-graders who put on fashion shows or make the cover of magazines, but 10-year-old Ify Ufele from Queens is making quite a name for herself on the runway.
"Being a designer and being at fashion shows are really exciting because you get a lot of attention, and a lot of people ask you what inspires you," Ify says.
Her inspiration: plus-size ladies and girls for her plus-size label called Chubii Line.
The designer says she was bullied at her school because of her size. She shared her pain with her grandmother, a seamstress, and together, they started sewing clothing for her dolls.
"She started when she was three, sitting and watching me sew," says Nellie Rembert, Ify's grandmother. "That was interesting because the average child would want to watch television."
No TV for Ify. The bright grade-schooler quickly transitioned from plastic dolls to real-life dolls, creating free-flowing styles with African patterns.
Her mom, Dr. Reba Perry, says her daughter has learned the art of multi-tasking.
"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," Perry says.
During Fashion Week, Ify will be the only kid designer that dresses curvy models during an exclusive event at the Holiday Inn in Midtown. It's a pretty big score for a pint-sized designer with super-sized dreams.