Rachel Weidner: Affordable Fashion

Her Campus: What is your year, and major? Tell me a little about you!

Rachel Weidner: I am a graduating senior with a major in fashion design, and a minor in business. I’m from Philadelphia, PA but ventured out to Kent when I heard about the amazing fashion program! I really loved anything artistic or creative throughout high school, and I had a love of fashion and styling but never thought I could pursue it as a career. I was planning on going to school to be a lawyer until my Mom suggested I looked into fashion merchandising, and after attending DKS I realized I wanted to be apart of the creative process of the fashion industry and so I switched to design and took up a business minor – I’ve been hooked ever since! I’m also a member of Chi Omega on campus, I have 3 black belts in Tae Kwon Do, and I’m obsessed with bulldogs!!

HC: What are your social media usernames?

RW: Instagram: @_raw_design

Facebook: @rawdesignsblog (If you want to like my page, it’s basically the same stuff on my Instagram!)



HC: Tell me a little bit about your Instagram account, and what is your inspiration behind it?

RW: I am currently working on an up and coming Instagram and blog promoting affordable fashion. Basically, how to stay in style without breaking the bank! My Instagram features a ton of the deals I find and how to pair thrifted pieces/sale items with more staple items to mix and match your wardrobe! I also post my own designs and easy DIYs to transform thrifted pieces into something else more trendy! 

On my website you can read my blog posts that also relate to my affordable fashion platform similar to my Instagram account. I also have a tab that you can use to shop my looks. I post pictures of outfits and link pictures of similar items that are affordable or clearance so you can purchase a look similar to mine! I’m hoping to have some of my custom pieces up on my website soon for purchase!

HC: What do you hope to achieve through your current work?

RW: My biggest platform right now, especially through social media, is affordable fashion. As a fashion major and with my experience in the design and manufacturing aspect of the fashion industry, so many brands make their items almost completely unattainable to the mass. High-end designers make a fortune because they have established names that people want, so they can charge whatever they want for items that cost them very little to make. Although it is incredibly smart of them, I am one of those people that want to be able to wear high-end designers but simply can’t afford to. I want to show people they can achieve the same looks by spending a fraction of the price, or really what is in budget for them. If you can afford to spend a large quantity of money on clothing, that’s great, and if you can’t, that is fine, too! Fashion isn’t defined as how much money you have or buying the same things that everyone else has. Fashion is defined as expressing yourself however you choose, and wearing what makes you feel good!

HC: Do you have any big goals surrounding your Instagram page or designs?

RW: Currently my plan leaving college is to start my own business. My mom and I are working on establishing an online boutique with hopes to set up pop-up shops in the suburbs of Philadelphia. My own personal goal is to establish my own line of RAWdesign pieces that I can sell. My more custom and elaborate pieces (evening wear looks, outerwear pieces, anything that I use high quality fabric and sewing techniques to make) I will sell on my website for higher prices. I’m working on making some more simple pieces that I can sell for affordable prices so people can shop my collection affordably as well! Eventually I plan to send out my designs to have manufactured. The overall plan is to establish my brand and use my mom and I’s boutique, and my website and Instagram, to sell my pieces, as well as talking to other boutique owners to hopefully get my pieces in their stores, too! Maybe eventually I will work on a collection for Philadelphia Fashion Week or possibly New York fashion week! I figure now is the time to take risks and try to start my own thing and I’m very blessed to have so much support from my family and friends to start this!

HC: Do you have a quote, or saying that you live by? Why does it speak to you?

RW: Hmm… Of course I could list a million fashion quotes that I love, but I think my life motto is “everything happens for a reason.” I feel like especially now in our lives, some of us just starting college and some of us finishing up, life can really get difficult. We are experiencing huge changes of moving away from home and being on our own for the first time, or getting ready to go out into the real world. I think it is important to know that there are going to be things that don’t come easy (I’m experiencing this as I’m approaching graduation), but you shouldn’t get discouraged. Everything happens for a reason, and when one door closes or an opportunity falls through, that just means there is something better coming your way. I think the most important thing in life to be successful is to believe in yourself and realize that not everything is going to come easy or be handed to you, sometimes you really have to set a goal for yourself and give 110% of yourself to get there. Eventually things start to fall into place and you realize how the path you took to get there helped mold you as a person and helped mold your success! Now that I’m ending my path through college, I’m ready to start at the beginning of the path on the next journey to make my goals become reality.