When Ashlyn So puts her mind to something, there’s no stopping her. Merely three years after attending her first sewing class at age 6, the fashion designer made her New York Fashion Week debut, presenting an enchanted forest-themed collection among designers five times her senior. And that’s just one of many accomplishments on her already-extensive résumé. Nowadays, 13-year-old Ashlyn is using her platform to speak out against the rise in hate crimes targeting Asian Americans, proving she’s ready to express herself with more than just a needle and thread. In honor of APIA Heritage Month, POPSUGAR caught up with Ashlyn about her fashion design endeavors and activism efforts, and the conversation instantly solidified our prior decision to include the talented San Francisco native on our 21 Under 21 list.
Ashlyn’s obsession with sewing dates all the way back to preschool. While her classmates played with blocks and finger paint, she was hooked on stitching together stuffed animals and Christmas ornaments.