The American Dreaming building in Northern Liberties is barely noticeable when walking by. It is pushed off onto a small street by Spring Garden, the outside of the building is nondescript and quiet. But when I went into the Pop Up Mall on Sunday, my eyes were shocked with vibrant colors, fancy fringe and shiny studs and sequins. Local designers and their beautiful and unique designs filled the tables that lined the edges of the building.
Towards the door is a rack of long maxi dresses covered in flowing fringe, made in dark greens and soft peaches. Next to the rack is a table of beautifully patterned scarves in casual greys and vibrant pinks. Sitting
at the table is Alicia Pinckney, smiling widely as she observes the crowd that just started filing in. Alicia is a 21 year old fashion design student at Philadelphia University. “I’ve always been interested in art,” Pinckney said. The artistic Philadelphia native has been designing custom orders for customers since the summer, during which she had a coveted Calvin Klein Internship.
“It was overwhelming, but I love doing it.”Pinckney also designed fall specific items such as fashionable scarves and long fringed maxi dresses for the pop up mall.
The new items were inspired by fall weather, contained a lot of fringe and were loose fitting and relaxing. Alicia has had a passion for creativity and a talent for design since she was just a child and she loves sharing her gift with the public . “I want to create things that people feel confident and beautiful.” It is hard to believe that Alicia is only 21,as she is wise and talented beyond her years.
But Alicia wasn’t the only talented designer at the pop up mall. There were tables filled with dip-dyed denim, shinning studded accessories, vibrant tees and eye popping jewelry. Toward the back of the building was a table filled with large, round and sparkling earrings. They were unique, loud and ambitious. And the designer,
Sch-Rel Desire, mirrored her product. She greeted me with enthusiasm as soon as I walked up to her table and was eager to tell me about her designs. She has been designing jewelry for 6 years. Her handmade designs are full of fabric, beads and sequins. The bright designs take time and patience; about 2 hours per pair.
“My jewelry is for girls who like to stand out.”
Alicia and Sch-Rel are just two examples of the enormous amount of talent at the pop up mall, which reminds us young women of some very important things. You’re never too young to be successful and pursue your dreams. Great things take hard work, dedication, talent and passion. And, there is a great source of local fashion and art right in our backyard–we just have to look for it!
• Alicia’s price range is around $20-$80 depending on the fabric and item. Her fashion blog is located at love-pinck.blogspot.com and you can contact her regarding custom designs at firstname.lastname@example.org . She will also be selling products at americandreamingmag.com in the near future.
• Sch-Rel’s blog is shestayfabulous.com, where you can purchase her designs. (note, typing the site in the browser doesn’t always work for her site, but if you google she stay fabulous, it is the first link)