Like many Muslim women, 18-year-old Sahro Hassan wears a hijab to cover her hair. But trust her scarf isn’t black or another solid color. In fact, it may be neon-sparkled, cheetah-printed, or even zebra-striped.
“I wouldn’t go Lady Gaga extreme, but I like something that people look at and think, ‘Oh my God, that’s interesting!’ Like, what is she wearing,” Hassan says to Public Radio International.
The teen designer of Somali Bantu descent immigrated to the U.S. with her family to escape the violence back home. They ultimately settled in blue-collar Lewiston, Maine, where the population is about 10 percent Somali and the fashion is about five percent stylish. That’s where Hassan’s madness for fashion began.
Hassan became a diehard fan of Project Runway and What Not to Wear, and she has already held two runway shows in downtown Lewiston and done her first photo shoot for her college application portfolio. The promising fashion designer has even been accepted to some of her top school choices.
“My biggest dream is to continue my line, but make it big that it’s known in the country, have my own store opened and even have a franchise,” she says. “I want to be the CEO of my company.”
Read more about Hassan’s journey here.