On Feb. 15, the UO Fashion Club released the first edition of MODE. Mia Steinfeld and Madeline Moreta, president and member of the club, worked to put the magazine together not just as a passion project, but in hopes to get the club's name out. The zine includes a club photoshoot, student brand shoutouts and options for sustainable clothing advocacy. Though challenging, the zine was successfully released with 300 copies printed and provided online in the club's Instagram biography.
Steinfeld is a third-year applied economics, business and society major with a sustainable business minor. Steinfeld transferred to the University of Oregon after spending her freshman year at the University of Texas at Austin where she studied sustainable fashion. Ultimately, transferring didn't allow her to pursue product design at UO as it would take four more years which led her to search elsewhere to pursue her passion for sustainable fashion.
The UO Fashion and Design Club was established four years ago but had no activity until January 2022, when Steinfeld, the current president, joined. Steinfeld contacted the establisher and took the reins in a "hand-off situation" since "no one had done anything with it," she said.
Ever since, the club's weekly meetings have been scheduled to discuss and explore various facets of fashion and product design: talking about color theory, working on sewing projects, going to thrift stores and discussing careers in fashion. She said the club is more of a "social fashion gathering" than a traditional club. Meetings are held weekly on Wednesdays.
"One of the biggest issues we ran into was funding," Steinfeld said. Due to the club’s inactivity, it wasn't getting funded by ASUO. She took it into her own hands to raise money.
"I walked to every local business within a mile, went in, introduced myself and asked if they would donate money to be sponsored in the magazine," Steinfeld said.
She raised over $600 for the club from these conversations alone. Some sponsors include Max's Tavern, Apothca and The Copy Shop. This coupled with fashion club members modeling for the magazine allowed it to successfully come to life.
"I walked to my class by the EMU, and I saw people reading it," Steinfeld said. "It just made my heart so happy to know something we worked so hard on really came to life and people enjoyed it."
As of now, the club is quite small with lenient attendance rules. Looking forward, the club wants to focus on visibility and growing to become a well-known club on campus. Steinfeld only has one year left at UO but hopes the club doesn't fade into the background again.
The club is open to anyone interested in fashion and product design: All new members have to do is show up. In the near future, the club is planning a photo shoot and a social party in an effort to increase visibility on campus. Information will be posted on its Instagram.
"I really want it to not only be such an established club that when you come to UO you know that there’s a club for fashion," Steinfeld said. "But I also want it to get to a point where we have a full room of kids every Wednesday."