For the past few months I've been religiously following one brave girl's quest to get the most out of her wardrobe. If you haven't already stumbled across The Uniform Project, you've been missing out on an experiment that is more innovative than any challenge Tim Gunn and the Project Runway producers could ever dole out.
In short, The Uniform Project features one chick who proudly travels the road less fashionably traveled, by pledging to go one full year without a single change of a dress. Some fashionistas may consider her challenge pure insanity. I consider it pure genius.
We've all fallen in love with a certain article of clothing, flocking to it a few days or so a week, but committing to one single piece for an entire year? Now that's devotion.
Before you start wondering about how our Uniform Project guinea pig, Sheena Matheiken, manages to keep that dress from getting funky in a bad way, don't fret. Sheena's brilliant designer pal, Eliza Starbuck, created 7 versions of the same simple A-line dress (one for every day of the week) that can be worn both front and back or as an open tunic. Sheena is more than halfway there with over six months going strong since the birth of the Project in May of 2009, and she has the entire fashion world rooting for her, engrossed and captivated by her inspiring exercise in sustainable fashion.
Accessorizing her forever frock with colorful tights, layers, millinery, vests, footwear and envious bling, Sheena incorporates pieces that are mostly vintage finds a la Ebay, as well as hand-made, recycled or donated items from loyal Uniform Project devotees. Sheena is no stranger to making simple looks stand out, growing up in India where she flaunted her personal style as a teen day after day, making her school uniform something to be admired, imitated and envied, much like the Gossip Girls who decked out their Constance Billard prep school uniforms with headbands, multi-colored tights, jewels, designer baggage and other luxe accoutrements.
What's the ultimate goal? The Uniform Project will donate all contributions to a charity that is near and dear to Sheena's heart, the Akanksha Foundation’s School Project, that will help pay for uniforms and other educational expenses for underprivileged kids in India.
She's already up to $28,060 and still has a lot of looks left, so thank Sheena for her daring fashion exhibition by making a donation, or donate some of your old accessories or a new creation that might be featured in a daily ensemble.
One hundred and seventy-six days to go for the year of dressing dangerously.