Advertisement
  1. Archive

Tampa teen's designs spotlighted at Christian Fashion Week

Julia Chew, 18, already has her own fashion line.
Published Feb. 7, 2013

Christian values and couture collide Saturday night as organizers bring the first-ever Christian Fashion Week to Tampa. For its inaugural outing, the event condenses a week's worth of shows into a one-night extravaganza. Thirteen designers from across the nation will showcase looks in synch with a religious world view that emphasizes "modesty, boldness and true style," according to the event website.

The youngest is Tampa's own Julia Chew, 18, creator of Xiaolin Design. The teen entrepreneur already sells her hand-sewn garments at etsy.com/shop/xiaolindesign. We caught up with Julia as she put the finishing touches on her 10 nature-inspired looks.

How did you get into designing clothes?

I have been sewing my entire life. I was homeschooled my whole education, which gave me time to really work on my sewing and designing skills. I started with quilts. When I was younger I would make all my own clothes. So, being a fashion designer is always something that seemed natural to me.

Why did you choose to participate in Christian Fashion Week?

I myself am a Christian. So when I heard about Christian Fashion Week, I was excited because the people who were organizing it had the same values.

Does being a Christian affect your designs?

It affects my designs very much. As a Christian, I like to present women and girls with clothes that are feminine that also honors their bodies. I like to make clothing that I think looks beautiful but I try to stay away from things that are obviously revealing.

So, no short skirts or plunging necklines in your latest collection?

People have different levels of modesty. So, I try to stay away from saying my clothes are being modest. … Christian Fashion Week had given guidelines and rules, such as they didn't want skirts to be shorter than 4 inches above the knee. That really helped. And that's a decent amount. I want women and girls to know it's not just what they wear, it's how they present themselves that matters.

Will you continue your fashion education?

Absolutely. I will not be going to college because I've already established a business and I'm hoping to continue to release a line every six months like a Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter collection. I'm not sure how fast this business is going to grow. I may have a storefront and employees one day; who knows? As of now, I'll continue working out my home in Tampa.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. Hillsborough County Tax Collector Doug Belden told employees Wednesday morning that health problems have forced him to step down at the end of his fifth term, in January 2021.
    After 21 years in the job, Belden plans to retire when his term ends Jan. 3, 2021
  2. Firemen and ambulance attendants remove a body from the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, where an explosion ripped the structure during services Sept.15,1963 . Associated Press
    Fifty-six years ago, a bomb blew apart the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, killing four girls and injuring dozens more.
  3. Danielle Harris of Pinellas Park leans against a large photo of Terri Schiavo and her mother, Mary Schindler, during a vigil outside the Woodside Hospice Villas in 2003. Associated Press
    “Terri Schiavo is now a martyr,” one then-state representative said upon learning of her death.
  4. Taylor Bland-Ball, 22, posted this photo and open letter to Judge Thomas Palermo to her Instagram account on September 10, the day after she lost custody of her 4-year-old son Noah McAdams. The boy's parents wanted to treat his leukemia with natural health care remedies instead of chemotherapy. [Instagram] ANASTASIA DAWSON  |  Instagram
    The couple refused chemotherapy for their son, instead seeking alternative treatments including dietary plans, alkaline water and THC and CBD oil treatments
  5. Joe Walsh. [Associated Press]
  6. The U.S. Coast Guard and other agencies have been searching a wide area of ocean between Cape Canaveral and Jacksonville. [Associated Press]
  7. Congressman Charlie Crist (D-St. Petersburg) and Congressman Gus Bilirakis (R-Palm Harbor) recite the Pledge of Allegiance during a Bipartisan Congressional Veterans Advisory Board meeting at the Dunedin Public Library on Monday. [MARTHA ASENCIO-RHINE   |   Times]
  8. Priscilla Shirer plays high school principal Olivia Brooks in “Overcomer,” a new film from the Kendrick Brothers. Photo courtesy of Sony/Affirm Films
  9. The men who create the toys received each Christmas season by many children in Polk County are far from being unblemished elves. [Polk County Toys For Tots/Facebook]
  10. Aug. 16• Archive
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement