Woman designs dress using toilet paper for breast cancer awareness

tand martin

tand martin

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Toronto-based fashion designer Chizoba Udeh-Martin goes viral thanks to the stunning couture dress she made using toilet paper as a way to raise money for breast cancer awareness.

Through the Cashmere Bathroom Tissue’s Vote Couture for the Cure initiative, 16 leading Canadian designers – including Udeh-Martin – transformed the brand’s toilet paper into incredibly striking and fashionable dresses. The public is encouraged to vote for their favorite dress daily – and for each vote, the toilet paper brand has promised to donate $ 1 (CAD) to The Canadian Cancer Society and the Quebec Breast Cancer Foundation.

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Nicknamed “Zoba”, the designer’s eponymous fashion brand, creates everything from couture ready-made clothing to wedding dresses. For this year, the toilet paper brand’s initiative – called “The NEW Belle Époque Cashmere Collection” – commissioned Udeh-Martin to create a dress “inspired by the innovative, cross-border France of the 20th century.”

“This dress was designed in honor of my aunt Nneka who was battling breast cancer before she went on, she had the most beautiful smile,” Udeh-Martin said in an Instagram post on October 1st. “The lines across the breast represent the scars from mastectomy and the crystals poured into the vulva area represent shine, strength and beauty in femininity. I also love hair braiding, so the braided strands are my way of braiding both skills together for the first time.”

“To use this moment to honor everyone who passed on as a result of breast cancer, to admire the survivors and encourage us to remember to feel for lumps 🎀✨,” she said at the end of her caption.

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In a TikTok she shared recently, where she showcased her laborious process of handcrafting the clothes, Udeh-Martin highlighted the delicate “softness” of the bathroom napkin she used.

In the clip, viewers can see her sew, staple, pleat, braid and go into every detail of her design while she brought it to life. At the end of the video, the designer says “Oh my God” as she records herself while responding to a separate clip of a fashion show contestant saying “Gorgeous” when he saw the dress hit the runway.

People expressed their astonishment at Udeh-Martin’s talent and process in the comments. They said things like:

“the talent that this needed,”

“O LORD GOD, JAWFULLED,”

and “Absolutely beautiful and talented [heart emoji]. “

In the spirit of Cashmere’s French theme this year, the designer put the clip to the song “La Vie En Rose” by Emily Watts.

Udeh-Martin started Zoba Martin in 2016.

Born in eastern Nigeria, the designer is a graduate of the University of Ottawa and the LaSalle School of Fashion Design.

“Apparently, Chizoba draws on global influences, Chizoba proves unique, hyper-flattering feminine clothing and dresses, brides and more, from her Toronto studio,” reads a post on the fashion brand’s Instagram account. It further highlighted Udeh-Martin’s “obvious gifts for artistic draping, ruching, puffing and pleating delicate fabrics” – all of which were skills that helped her execute her extravagant Cashmere Collection 2021 design.

Your chance to vote for Udeh-Martin in the competition ends on October 31st. If you would like to take sewing courses taught by Udeh-Martin or are interested in learning more about her and her couture design, find more information here.

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