Otago Polytechnic
Alesha Pyers Cropped2

A symbol of hope

Alesha Pyers' fashion research has grown out of her own experiences:

"Some people wear their hearts on their sleeves; I wear mine on my ears. Now you can too. My Aleshakerry collection of hand made "heart beat" earrings was developed in the EPICentre studio workshop at Otago Polytechnic. Ken Wyber in EPICentre has been incredibly helpful with ongoing support and knowledge. I want to spark conversation around mental health, break down barriers and give each customer a little piece of hope.

"The 18th of June 2018 marks one year of recovery. After my six-year battle with depression I hit rock bottom.  A long journey followed with the amazing support of my family and close friends. Exercise, art and talk therapy were my saviours. I can honestly say that I am proud of the woman I am today. I still hang out with my old mate depression but now I know how to put him in his place. One year ago I couldn't see forward to tomorrow. Today I see a future.

"The earrings have been available for sale online for two months now. I have sold 250 pairs with over $1000 donated to multiple charities. The involvement of the media has helped to raise awareness, support and sales. It is helping to open up discussion about mental health. I have had so many people contact me and tell me how it has helped them which is really rewarding and motivating for me."