My name is Emily Davison. I’m 23 years of age, a Masters Degree Graduate, Writer, journalist, YouTuber and a blogger.
I founded Fashioneyesta in July 2012 with the aim of challenging peoples perceptions of sight loss through my love of fashion, beauty and style. Its a blog that aims to make fashion accessible and inclusive for people with sight loss and other disabilities, whilst tackling the stigma surrounding sight loss.
When I was born I was diagnosed with a rare congenital condition called Septo Optic Dysplasia, a condition that affects my endocrine system and my vision. I am registered as Severely Sight Impaired with no sight in my right eye and limited vision with my left. I also have Nystagmus which is a condition which causes my eyes to move involuntarily.
When I was 14 I started to face issues with bullying and my self image, I started to look in the mirror and hate my body because of the fact I took steroids and they could make me gain weight which was a common side effect. This caused me to experience bullying from my peers about my weight and I later developed Anorexia Nervosa. It was a long road to recovery, but a when I turned 16 I was on the road to recovery, with desires to excel at my studies and move on with my life.
I worked hard at my studies and eventually I achieved the grades to get a scholarship to study a BA in English Literature at Goldsmiths University. Growing up with a disability always posed some challenges that I had to face, but one that I always found was peoples misconceptions about sight loss. When I turned 18 I qualified with my amazing guide dog, Unity. When I began to make trips with her to London I remember getting comments about the fact that I didn’t look blind. After receiving a number of comments from the public such as ‘you’re really well dressed for a blind person,’ or ‘you don’t look blind.’ I decided that I would delve into this matter a little further, after speaking to some other visually impaired friends they came back to me responding that they had also received similar comments about their dress sense.
I have written for The Guardian, Huffington Post and many other publications and have spoken at many events in the course of my life since the age of 8. And, heres a fun fact for you, I was the first severely sight impaired person to get a GCSE in Astronomy at the Royal Observatory.
It finally occurred to me that there was a huge misconception that surrounded sight loss, that all people with sight loss were unfashionable and could not have a relationship with style. This was obvious from the looks of incredulity on peoples faces as they looked at my choice of clothing that would always be coordinated and accessorised with elements of the latest trends as well as my own personal flare for bohemian style.
So, I decided that I would set up a blog to talk about this myth by showing that I loved fashion and beauty even with my sight loss. Fashioneyesta is very much a place that I have created to challenge myths surrounding disability, whilst being an everyday fashion and beauty blog in which I review the latest palette or talk about fashion trends for the season.
Fashion has always been a huge element of my life. Growing up, I was inspired by old Hollywood films and their captivating style icons such as Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly. The fashion houses, vintage stores and many delightful chic-lits inspired me to become more involved into the history and the beauty of fashion. By the time I was fourteen, my mother had bought me my first designer bag and then the rest is History.
To me, fashion is a language and its a way that we are able to articulate ourselves through what we wear. Each garment tells a story about you and the person you are, fashion can be a mode of expression and for me I choose it to express myself over my disability.
I would describe my style as feminine, with exotic flares, vintage twists and a lot of costume jewelry. I change my look depending on my mood, one day I may step out in an Oriental inspired outfit. Or another day I may wish to go full out Vintage with Victory Rolls and a 1940s inspired tea dress.
The media has hypodermically projected an image that Visually Impaired people are aloof characters, sporting an anorak and dark glasses. This is a grossly unfair characterization and must to combated. Fashioneyesta.com serves to present visually impaired people with the tools, the skills and, the knowledge of fashion, beauty and, style to enable them to use their remaining senses to gage the world of fashion and to create their own unique style.
Fashion can be daunting for any person, regardless of vision. Clothing and personal appearance are key psychological factors to a persons wellbeing. In the 1940s it was believed that a person must look their best to feel confidence, their confidence transmits itself to others around you and thus you are noticed.
I conduct interviews with people in the fashion business on my blog, to give my readers a fresh perspective to fashion. My most recent interview was with Laura Legendary who is my co founder of the podcast channel I run called Fashionability.
My blog receives a joint following of 12k followers and has been established for almost 4 years, I’ve worked exceedingly hard on it over the past few years and have been so lucky to have received so much support and positive feedback.
I currently work with a number of different charities and organizations to raise awareness of Fashioneyesta and what we do, as well as to help Visually Impaired people with fashion. At present, I work as a fashion correspondent alongside the RNIB’s Insight Radio and in the past for Able Radio. I’ve also appeared on BBC4’s In Touch radio, BBC Ouch Disability, ITV This Morning, BBC News, Channel 4 and London Live. I’m currently involved in a number of projects with charities and organisations including the RNIB, BBC Body Positive and many others.
I welcome you to Fashioneyesta and hope that you enjoy reading and exploring everything it has to offer.
Always remember to be daring and don’t conform to what society expects you to be!