30 Days of Artists: Creative Forces From Avenue Five Bring Their Talents to Art Bra Austin

Avenue Five has been training students in the arts of haircare, skincare and massage since 2007, and these three women — two students and one instructor — are ready to make their mark on Art Bra Austin. Erika Peck likely speaks for all of them when she says, “Making this ArtBra was a fun way to do something that is bigger than me. I truly admire the strength in the individuals that have kicked disease in the butt. I find inspiration in every story that I’ve heard about LIVING.”

Erika Peck
“Vegas Nights”

Using red netting, poker chips, playing cards, ribbon, feathers and assorted trims, Erika played around with the composition until she achieved the desired affect. “I didn’t know until I started arranging the materials that I would call this bra ‘Vegas Nights,'” she says, “and I’ve always wanted to go to Vegas.”

“I can take items that seemingly wouldn’t go together and make it work,” she continues, “I don’t know if that’s art, but I’m good it.” Erika notes that she has had several friends whose mothers were diagnosed with and beat cancer, and because she enjoys a creative challenge, she knew she had to take advantage of the Art Bra Austin opportunity when it was presented to her at Avenue Five. Seeing Erika’s creativity and talent in this bra, we think this is anything but Las Vegas beginner’s luck.


Estefania Dongo
“Esperanza’s Bra”

Using  pompoms, rhinestones, studs and LED glow spheres, Estefania was assisted by Schyler Lewis in the design of the bra, with help from Camille Jones and Jocelyn Fleury to bring it all together. “I love bright colors and anything that makes me happy when I look at it,” Estefania says, “so we all decided to use bright colors strategically, placing our materials in a way that would be comfortable for the model and that would also highlight ‘the girls.'”

Estefania says that this bra is dedicated to the memory of her beloved Aunt Esperanza, who unfortunately lost her fight with breast cancer in 2007. And because “esperanza” means “hope” in Spanish, we think this Art Bra Austin creation is a perfect reminder of what BCRC stands for.



Natalie Morrison
“The Catanzaro Warrior Princess Bra”

An aesthetics instructor at Avenue Five, Natalie says Art Bra Austin is  “an incredible opportunity to create art while benefiting cancer survivors.” Using turquoise beads, suede, suede fringe, various feathers, acrylic jewels, wooden beads and rabbit pelts, she created a piece that portrays the spirit of Karen Catanzaro, the woman who inspired her.

“She is an unbelievably incredible woman,” Natalie says, “Her strength, determination, and spirit have amazed me since our first meeting. I admire her greatly.”

Natalie’s creation features many handmade techniques — sewing, weaving, stringing beads — and comes with an accompanying headpiece to complete the ensemble.





All art bras will be auctioned off at BCRC’s signature charity event to raise funds to support local women affected by breast cancer. To learn more about Art Bra Austin, visit www.artbraaustin.org



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