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Chelsea Blackman has a passion for fashion | Schools

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Chelsea Blackman has a passion for fashion
Chelsea Blackman has a passion for fashion

Love what you do and you will never work a day in your life. This advice is often given to young people who are trying to decide what career path to follow, but Chelsea Blackman, a Clarence native enrolled in Erie 1 BOCES Fashion Design and Merchandising program, is ahead of the curve.

Blackman has found a passion for fashion, and nobody puts that love into words better than she does.

“To be successful as well as happy, I think that someone has to have an unconditional, infinite, and unyielding love for what he or she does. I know that I belong in the fashion industry. I want to experience a fast paced day, full of fittings and photo shoots. I want to travel and meet new people, and see my ideas brought to life,” Blackman explained.

Now a senior, Blackman is preparing for her capstone project: a fashion show that will showcase outfits that she and her classmates designed and produced themselves.

The BOCES program has equipped her with the skills to do this through classes on the basics like fashion history and color theory, to the practical skills of making patterns and sewing the actual garment, to the merchandising aspect of promotion and distribution.

Blackman’s line is inspired by lyrics from her favorite artists. She was allowed full creative freedom of her project, and decided to think outside the box by hand painting one garment, and even burning another. She even decided to take things one step further and make theatrical props to go along with her runway designs.

“For me, fashion is all about self-expression,” Blackman said. “In my line, I wanted to convey the feeling of being triumphant and overcoming obstacles despite all the darkness and negativity.”

This year’s fashion show is themed “Illuminate” and will feature designs from all of the seniors in the program. On April 3, there will be shows at 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The fashion students will get to see their outfits on the runway during a production made possible with help from students in several other BOCES programs including cosmetology, digital media, custom painting graphics, and building trades. Between the shows there will be a career expo where all 25 of Erie 1 BOCES Career and Technical programs will be represented.  This event is free and open to the public.

About Erie 1 BOCES
As part of public education, BOCES offer a variety of career and technical programs during the normal school day to high school students. Erie 1 BOCES partners with Erie County school districts to offer unique learning opportunities in a cost effective manner.  High school students interested in learning more about how they can participate in various programs such as fashion design, electronics or aviation technology should visit www.e1b.org/cte or speak with their high school counselor.



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