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One out of every four students reports being bullied during the school year. A number that is likely much higher, as 64% of children who were bullied don’t report it. Ify Ufele, a 5th grader from Laurelton, Queens, found refuge in sewing after she was bullied in school for her body type. “I had to bring her to the doctor, we were thinking it was a stomach problem. But then when we realized it was the bullying, it took a tole on her physically, where she really didn’t want to go to school,” says her mother in a local news report for PIX11. This is not surprising, as students who experience bullying are twice as likely to experience negative health effects as non-bullied students. But Ulefe turned her misfortune into a strength, designing an entire line at home while juggling elementary school homework. “The name is Chubii Line. Not as in ‘you’re chubby’, chubby as in ‘you’re different,’” says 10-year-old Ufele of portfolio, which she designs, drafts and sews herself. Consisting of menswear, children’s, women’s and plus size, Ulefe’s vivacity for fashion celebrates all body types---the thing that she was bullied for in school. Her line debuted at Fashion Week, featuring sleek charcoal suits, daywear with bright prints, and conscientious plus size clothing designed with stretchy fabric.

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In the United States, 55% of bullying is based on looks, 37% on body shape, and 16% on race. Though Ufele’s story is one of success, her mother elaborates that there is much to be done to create a safe space in schools.  “This has been a long journey for her and we still have a long way to go. We want people to understand that it’s really not about the fashion, it’s about the bullying and the movement we’re sharing with a lot of individuals, especially our young people.” Chubii Line has ten pieces going on sale next week on her website, and be sure to check out her amazing styles below!

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Critically-acclaimed author of bathroom literature, Help! I’m In Ghost Hell and How To Cheat People Out Of Money By Buying This Book, Anastasia (aka Z-Bam) is what some people might call a quintuple threat. A classically-trained kazooist, radio host, expert sneezer, music writer and cheese patriot, Ana has been doin’ it and doin’ it and doin’ it well since 1990. “And she just keeps on doin’ it!,” says strange woman and unsuspecting mother of Ana, “She just won’t give it a rest already.” Aside from things she does to forage for food, Ana also enjoys: food, cheese, ice cream, dairy, lactaid tablets, irony, and proposing to people she doesn't know just-in-case one of them is an undercover millionaire. Get a show-stopping glimpse of Ana’s in-person talents by tuning-in to her latest television program, Why Does That Person Keep Looking At Me?.

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