I AM Fabulous: How it all started

For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved fashion. But it wasn’t as much about pretty clothes and designer brands as it was about people and stories. I’ve also always thought there is a problem with how our society views aging. To me, I see aging as a beautiful experience filled with growth, stories, memories and wisdom.

My mom (I’m her biggest fan by the way) works in assisted living. I’ve watched her touch the lives of so many incredible people during their later years in life, and I’ve always wanted to do something that could make an impact within our aging community.

Since I’m not a nurse, I decided to work with the network I had. So, I called up all my talented friends in the creative industry (hair, makeup, photography, styling, etc.) and we went to Mount Olivet and surprised the residents with a day of surprise makeovers! We even had a video made and it ended up going viral! This was an experience I will never forget.

Video by Jason Ho

The day at Mount Olivet was so special that I wanted to figure out a way to do it in a bigger way and reach more people. And that is where the I AM Fabulous idea was born. What if I produced a fashion show where all my models were ages 65 and older? The day was so incredibly inspiring and filled with so many stories, laughs, and of course style!

The event was a huge success, so I decided to turn it into an annual event. Each year, it gets bigger and more thoughtful (which keeps me super busy). I think we can all relate to being busy and trying to execute our ideas and passions. The challenge is trying to figure out how to manage your time while growing personally and professionally. That’s why I love the fact that our sponsor Concordia University Saint Paul offers so much flexibility in their online education programs. They understand that, in today’s world, we need to be able to create a customized solution for our lives. School, jobs, family, friends, social life, passion projects, dogs, vacations. . . how is it possible to fit it all in?

I AM Fabulous 2017: Photo by Lauren Engfer

I AM Fabulous 2017: Photo by Lauren Engfer

I think it is easy to underestimate the importance of continued learning and education in today’s super-fast-paced world. I’m definitely more of a creative person so when it comes to owning/running a business...I often think about going back to school. There are so many things that come up in my day to day that I don’t have a background in.

With over 100 majors, minors and other programs to explore, CSP truly has something for everyone. And over 40 of those programs are offered fully online — perfect for your busy life! With the theme of empowerment in place for I AM Fabulous, I truly can’t think of anything more empowering than an education. And these days we need to be able to make education happen around our very busy lives.

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Sarah Edwards