My name is Alicia Searcy and I am the 'Spashionista' (short for Spastic Fashionista) Nashville, Tennessee's disabled fashion and style blogger extraordinaire. I was born with Cerebral Palsy and am wheelchair or walker dependent, but that hasn't stopped me from being fashionable.
On my blog, Spashionista.com, I've shared my passion for fashion while advocating for social awareness and acceptance of people with disabilities.
In 2012, I decided to become a fashion blogger because I couldn't find anyone else who was addressing fashion from the perspective of disabled, curvy women over the age of 40. I focused the bulk of my efforts on Nashville – the current “it” city in the US – and have featured countless designers, boutiques, and vintage clothing shops. I've also covered Nashville Fashion Week and many other runway shows and events as well as addressing social and physical accessibility issues around town.
I have learned firsthand that there are a great many designers that have an interest not just in portraying their work as strictly editorial, runway pieces, but also in the sartorial, everyday sense of fashion. There are lots of designers whose desire is to make women (and men) look and feel good. However, many women in my demographic are either unaware of these designers or feel they are somehow not worthy of wearing fashionable clothing. I decided I wanted to change that. I think being stylish and caring about one's appearance is a sign of self-respect and approachability. Fashion isn't just for young, able-bodied supermodels. It's for all of us.
On September 10th of this year, I'm producing Nashville's first inclusive fashion show called 'Fashion is for Every Body'. Male and female models of all ages, races, sizes and abilities will participate in multiple runway segments at abrasiveMedia in Nashville. Twenty models will wear clothing from local designers, many of whom have previously shown collections at Nashville, New York and Austin Fashion Weeks. Evan Gray, Cat-land Forever Couture, Amanda Valentine, Nashville 2016 Fashion Forward Fund Recipient Eric Adler, Ola Mai, and Black by Maria Silver will show some of their iconic Nashville fashion. Clothing from Pura Vida Vintage and Opium Vintage will also be featured, and John Thielman, Andrés Bustamante and Alter ur Ego are presenting their debut collections. Our models range in age from 18 to 50+ and from sizes 00 to 20. Models with physical disabilities will be on the same runway as their able-bodied colleagues. We even have a handsome guide dog escorting a visually impaired model!
During breaks in the show, we will be showing clips from a documentary we are shooting about how the show's participants view their contribution to fashion and inclusion in today's Nashville. The evening will conclude with a pop-up shopping event featuring clothing by the show's designers and boutiques and any artwork displayed on the walls of abrasiveMedia. The inaugural 'Fashion is for Every Body' will pay tribute to David Bowie's iconic influence on fashion, style, and self-acceptance.
Everyone involved in this project is volunteering their time for free. We are currently fund-raising to pay for the venue, lighting, equipment rental and media materials needed to make this show a reality. Please visit our Indiegogo page if you'd like to purchase a “Fashion is for Every Body” T-Shirt or other perk to help make this show a reality!
Stay in touch with this and further projects!