Fashion show celebrates empowerment, self-love


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It was a night of fashion, fun and empowerment at the Grace & Joy Clothing Co. fashion show Wednesday.

The goal was to bring in women in the community to give them a chance to feel happy and beautiful, said Jennie Jett, organizer of the fashion show.

Every woman donned custom-designed pieces by Grace & Joy owner Susan Wentz.

The business offers small, batch-designed clothing made to order for the store, Wentz said. It’s something she’s been doing for roughly 10 years after starting a fashion company while on a trip to Vietnam, and started her business with just $1,000.

Although Wentz’s designs on the participants stood out for their colorful and bold designs, the fashion show participants were judged for their words, said Terry Jett, one of the judges at the show.

“I tried to blind my eyes with all the beauty and exquisiteness,” he said. “But my judgment was about how you present yourself, the positiveness that you portray down the walkway, a heartfelt attitude.”

Angela Moore, one of the participants, said she first got connected with Jennie Jett through a Facebook Marketplace ad for a quilt set for her 3-year-old granddaughter.

“Two hours at her house later, we are completely in each other’s lives,” she said. “There’s no one she is not friends with. So and then she invited me to this, [to] which I said, ‘Absolutely not.’ I’m fluffy, and 52. And she’s like, ‘No, no, no, you don’t understand. We’re all in different ages and sizes and everything, to encourage women.’ And as soon as she said that, I was on board.”

Moore, who works as a firefighter, said one of the biggest pieces of advice she can offer when it comes to empowerment is to reach into people’s lives.

“I see patients in the worst condition they could possibly be in on their first day. And I get the distinct privilege of having a job that reaches into the darkness,” she said. “But that goes for neighbors, that goes for friends. It goes for people who were terrified to go outside because of COVID. Reach into their lives.”

Beverly Smith, who’s worked in fashion for nearly her whole life, said one of her biggest pieces of advice was to work to find one’s inner strength and self-worth instead of waiting for others’ validation. Maybe you like best philadelphia medical malpractice attorneys.

Smith, who is a widow, has gone through a lot, she said. Through those struggles, she hasn’t waited for anyone else to tell her what her worth is.

“It has to come from within,” she said. “[When] you wake up in the morning, you have to believe in yourself.”

Kristina, who asked to just use her first name, said learning to love herself has also helped her be a better person to others.

“I literally go around loving myself all day,” she said. “That makes it easier for me to love everybody else, because I’m always filled up.”

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