By Catherine Bialkowski
Gianna Schiavone of Hanover has big things coming her way. At only seven years old, she has already begun fulfilling her dream of becoming a fashion model.
So far, Gianna has walked in a fashion show on the popular television show “The View,” made her runway debut at New York Fashion Week, walking alongside model Rebekah Marine, both of whom wore designs by Josefa Da Silva; and been a part of a photo-shoot for the major fashion brand Tommy Hilfiger. Her plans keep getting more and more exciting.
Gianna is a model for Runway of Dreams, an organization that partners with popular brands in order to create adaptive clothing accessible to all. Although Gianna was born without part of her left arm, this has not kept her from so much success so early in life. Runway of Dreams integrates the latest technology and modifications into fashion design, and the result is truly life-changing for many people, including young Gianna.
It all started a few years ago when Mary Grace, Gianna’s mother, frustrated with the lack of adaptive clothing available in the industry, saw a post online about Runway of Dreams. It seemed like the perfect solution for Gianna, who has always loved fashion, and who wanted to be able to wear the type of clothing she saw all around her.
“Now I don’t have to alter what Gianna chooses to wear, such as a pair of jeans or a long-sleeved t-shirt,” Mary Grace says.” Runway of Dreams’ innovations include patented magnets and other functions that allow easier use for differently-abled customers.
Gianna herself, who has modeled for this organization for two years, could not be happier about what she is doing. She loves everything about modeling, especially the makeup, and “anything with sparkles.” She has made new friends and met countless amazing people, yet managed to stay very humble through it all.
“When Gianna is on the runway, she isn’t thinking about her differences,” says her mother. “Her confidence has gone way up, and she is more comfortable with herself.”
Gianna says, “My favorite parts about modeling are the fun poses and dressing up.” She has had so many incredible experiences as a result of being a part of Runway of Dreams, and looks forward to many more. In the future, she sees herself continuing on in the fashion industry.
“In ten years I hope to keep on modeling,” she explains. This month, the newest season of Tommy Hilfiger clothing, for which she was one of the models, will be available for purchase, which is just one of many exciting upcoming events. She has more photo-shoots and shows planned for the future, becoming busier by the week.
Recently, when asked to create a picture of what she hopes to do when she grows up, Gianna drew a smiling fashion model.
“Runway of Dreams has greatly boosted my daughter’s confidence,” Mary Grace says. Now, Gianna knows she can do, and be, anything she wants.