New Yorker Lizzy Savage never thought she would be taking part in the quintessential New York Fashion Week event.
“I just can’t believe it. You know, it’s really a dream come true,” she told NY1.
She will be Fashion Week’s artist in residence, decorating the exterior of Spring Studios, where the fashion shows will be held, with hand-placed hearts. The hearts bear sayings like “you are amazing, and, fittingly, “dreams don’t expire.”
Maybe you’ve seen them before. Savage, who uses the Instagram handle @heartsny, has placed more than 4,000 of them across the city since the pandemic began as a way to cheer people up.
“Just every day so many people tell me how much it’s helping them and it gives them positive feelings, it brightens their day,” she said.
IMG, which puts on Fashion Week, says selecting Savage as the artist in residence made sense because her work is so upbeat. It wants this year’s shows to celebrate the resilience of the fashion community.
Incredibly, Savage wasn’t even an artist before COVID-19 took hold. She was, and still is, a bartender in Greenwich Village, where she’s lived for 25 years.
“I’ve always done creative things, but I just had to come up with an idea to make the city come alive again in my little small way,” she explained.
And Fashion Week, which begins on Sunday, Valentines Day, has always brought some extra life to the city. Although this year, it will be smaller than usual, and except for a few in-person runway shows, where social distancing will be mandatory, most of the events will take place on NYFW.com.
But as one of Savage’s pieces says, “hope is not cancelled,” and that’s something we all could take to heart.