Throughout campus, one can often hear opinions such as “Bereans know NOTHING about fashion.” However, BC senior and fashion blogger, Avante Edmonds feels otherwise. She remarks, “No one was seeing what I saw, so I wanted to address the critics by showing off Berea and its fashion glory.” Ergo, in Spring 2013 Avante Edmonds decided to shift the target of her fashion blog from the fashion world at large to focusing on the ways Bereans are contributing to the fashion world. She would like for the campus to recognize that fashion exists in Berea and she would like the world to know that fashion can exist in rural areas.
On her blog, androvon.blogspot.com, one will find original photographs, videos, and commentary about Berea College’s role in the world of fashion. Currently, Avante’s target audience for her blog has been students that have unique styles, but she will be extending her demographics to faculty and staff. She already has projects in development with members of the current administration.
“Students at Berea are from a wide range of places in America and other places around the world resulting in various styles on campus. Aspects of various cultures and traditions are evident through the ways in which many students on our campus dress” says Avante. Since fashion is evident as one walks through campus, her goal is to break the stereotype that Bereans are not interested in fashion.
Avante’s vision is that her blog will impact the campus community in the sense that fashion will be one more thing that Berea College is known for. She proclaims, “Just because we are a liberal arts school doesn’t mean that fashion should not be on the agenda. There are many creative individuals on this campus and one of the ways they express themselves is through fashion and who am I to ignore that?” Avante hopes that through her blog, a sub-community will be built on campus. She would like for students on campus to feel like they have somewhere they belong because for many students who have been interested in fashion there has been a void.
The content on her blog has improved through her role as a Broadcast Journalism minor, through her labor position as the Communication and Marketing Coordinator for the Campus Activities Board and through her enrollment in film production. Also, she had a summer internship at Prosper Media Group, Lexington, KY, as a videographer’s assistant. The content on her blog has improved because she has learned a lot about videography. As a videographer’s assistant she learned the basis of film production and she learned how to capture and tell the story of a person through film. Her experiences in these positions have given her the knowledge of production and have given her access to equipment that will enable her to produce higher quality work.
Many of the people with whom Avante associates are aware of her blog, but she is unaware of the extent of knowledge that other members of the BC community have in regards to her work. Word-of-mouth has been the best source for getting members of campus to notice her blog. Social media sites, sharing the links on other fashion blog pages, and sharing the links on the walls of groups have also been ways to attract the public’s attention. She appreciates it when students approach her on campus and share how they have seen and enjoyed her latest posts and videos. In addition, Avante has been connected with fellow fashion bloggers and they offer her tips on how to increase her following.
“My blog is for the campus; and it was created to let them know and assure others that we do have a fashion sense,” says Avante.
She welcomes students, faculty, and staff to send pictures for her blog to her Berea email: firstname.lastname@example.org or her Gmail account: email@example.com.