Sugar House Girl Keeps Her Integrity in the Fashion World
Mar 10, 2016 10:22AM
● By Bryan Scott
By Natalie Mollinet | [email protected]
Sugar House - Moving to the other side of the world can change a person for better or for worse, depending on the friends you make and the environment you are in. One Sugar House woman has kept her integrity and, even being surrounded by fashion models and designers, decided she was never going to change to fit in.
Mquiston Stoddard, or as her friends call her, Q, is a homegrown Sugar House resident who went to Highland Park, Hillside and Highland High and knew that she wanted to be a fashion designer. She applied for the best schools and got accepted, starting out her training in Florence, Italy.
“School consisted of waking up, going to school, doing ridiculous amounts of homework and then sleep and repeat,” Q said.
This is how school was for Q, not only in Florence but also her time in New York City and finally graduating in Milan, Italy.
“My biggest struggle was staying motivated,” Q said. “It is really hard to drive yourself when no one else really cares if you fail or succeed.”
Q paid for all of her own schooling and said that money was always very tight. She always had the struggle of choosing between eating and buying her supplies for class. Q had to do some odd jobs to get by and stick to a super strict budget, but she made it through alive.
As many people can imagine, working in the fashion world is a world of its own. Q did face a lot of struggles being a part of a culture where you’re supposed to act one way, look one way and be one way.
Q did get slack about her curvy body from people in the fashion world, but she knew that she was beautiful on the outside and inside. She was raised in a strong family that knew being a daughter of God was more important than trying to fit in, and she said that her family really was her support group and the people she knew she could rely on for anything.
“I think it really helped having such good parents. They are the motivators in my success. I want to make them proud and show them that I am who I am because of how they taught me,” Q said.
Q recalled a story of when a teacher told her to go get some money and then come back to school so she could look more like the other fashion designers.
“It hurt, but I vowed that day that no matter how my image changes I will not change how I treat people. I think that is the worst thing that can happen to successful people, is thinking they’re entitled to act better than other humans. I mean, for goodness sake, we are all humans,” she said.
Even though Q loves her Sugar House home, she wanted to work in Italy, but it’s extremely hard for Americans to get work visas in other countries. In her situation, there was a mistake in her graduation and some paper work in the application. Now her plans are to create a fashion line here in Utah to show the world what Utah is really made of.
“Sugar House has really developed since I’ve last been here. ‘Downtown Sugar House’ is awesome,” she said.
Being in Italy made her homesick for Sugar House. She missed the park and being able to see the mountains, and even after snowboarding in the Alps, she said that Utah really does have the greatest snow on earth.
Q is currently working at Fantasy Bridal in Murray and running her own fashion website. She really wants to start her fashion line here and be able to show her future kids the hard work she has come to learn traveling around the fashion world.
“I want to show my kids the importance of passion and hard work, but I don’t want to get so lost in a career that I can’t help raise a family,” she said.