5 years ago, I was a 3rd year design student in Toronto looking to find inspiration and things to do around the city. By chance, I found a small fashion event off Instagram that was happening within the week.
I remember it was raining hard that day. I got side splashed by a car running through a deep pool of water right before I walked in the building. No umbrella could save me from that tidal wave of road water.
The show audience eventually walked in and we all took our seats. One by one, each designer showcased their collection of the season.
Finally we got to the final show of the night. Bridal. Couture. Romantic. Elegant. Powerful. Those were all the words I could use to describe the work I saw. A true master in her craft. That was the work of Cynthia Udeh-Martin.
That night, I found Cynthia’s instagram account and sent her a DM and an email. I wanted to learn everything she knew about sewing and fashion design. A few days later, she asked me to come by her studio.
She showed me around and taught me how to make a basic skirt on that very first day.
I remember going home feeling like I just experienced some magic.
For the next year and a half, I found myself commuting 30 minutes to an hour from my parents house to Cynthia’s studio. I was learning and seeing so much. Every time I went was a new project. I was able to learn from countless hours of sewing together dresses and bridal gowns.
I loved every minute of it and I still take that experience everywhere I go.
For people in positions of power, the above story is the influence of taking a chance on somebody else with little experience but lots of interest and willingness to learn.