There's nothing better than being there to experience someones dreams come true. The sheer joy and nervous buzz that emanates from the person as their vision becomes a reality is absolutely unmatched.
This is exactly what I felt from Noa Sorrell when I met her at Art Hearts Fashion, moments before her first fashion collection took the runway in Los Angeles Fashion Week. Noa's collection opened the Wednesday night kidswear show produced by Erik Rosete and ParkerWhitaker Productions at the Taglyan Complex.
Noa's interest in fashion was sparked by her grandmother. Noa recalled, "My grandmother was a very loving and very talented seamstress! She died of pancreatic cancer in 2013, but one of the last things she did before dying was to teach me how to work the sewing machine. My grandmother and I made a beautiful New Year's dress together."
But Noa's story is more than just that of an aspiring fashion designer making her dreams a reality on the runway. Noa is an 11-year old cancer survivor. She was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma in January 2015.
During her recovery, Noa found herself with a lot of free time on her hands. It's what every kid wants, right? Not Noa. An avid fan of Project Runway, Noa found herself pulling out the little Singer sewing machine that had been purchased for her grandmother and asking her Mom to take her to a fabric store.
"I was not feeling well, but looking at all the colors and thinking about the infinite number of amazing things I could create with those colors made me happy. In no time, drawing and sewing became the most exciting thing in my life and turned those difficult days of recovery from chemo into an opportunity to create amazing things. I saw my work and my health getting better with each new piece I made."
During her 3 months of chemotherapy, while in the hospital away from school and home, Noa dove into designing and creating to help her get through this tough time in her life. Noa recognized that "Designing clothes took my mind off my chemo and focused it into doing something fun and amazing. I love designing and creating clothes."
It wasn't long after this that Noa was connected with Make-A-Wish who coordinated the opportunity for her to show at Los Angeles Fashion Week.
"When Make-A-Wish said that they could help make my dream of showing my work become reality, I was incredibly happy! I have worked very hard on a spring collection that that celebrates life with warm lively colors that can make anyone smile, no matter how grey you feel inside."
In addition to designing and creating all of the looks on the runway, Noa was very involved in the entire process. She worked behind the scenes with the hair and makeup teams from The Organic Face and FHI HEAT to ensure her vision was represented from head to toe. CEO and Founder of The Organic Face, Noreen Diani, shared with me that "Noa was very organized. She provided us with a detailed spreadsheet with information about each design, as well as styling concepts for every model."
Noa's vitality and love for life was very well represented in her runway presentation. The young model's strutted down the runway to Katy Perry's Firework. Look after look, each model radiated pure joy, evidenced in their beaming smiles and the spring in their step. Each of the 10 looks was bursting with brilliant colors and vibrant patterns, a clear inspiration for the collection.
When asked what's next for the up-and-coming designer, she smiled. "I want to dress Taylor Swift." I have no doubts that this will soon be another exciting milestone in her career!
Are you inspired by Noa's story? Or do you know someone that needs some inspiration to follow their dreams? Help in celebrating Noa's success and congratulate her by sharing this article!