Like many other people, Tonya Aragon and her family started to make TikToks of their life together. The daily vlogs of their lives with six new foster children quickly gained traction, and even once their family was back down to the three biological children, Tonya continued to post.
Her children’s passions and interests were very compelling to Tonya and others, especially her middle child Kaia’s eye for design.
“On Christmas Day she went into her room, grabbed a scrap piece of fabric, and draped a dress. She hand sewed it and walked out an hour later wearing a new dress! I had no idea she could do that,” Tonya tells Love What Matters about the start of Kaia’s journey.
“She continued to get more and more interested in fashion and design, watching Project Runway as much as she could and giving herself new challenges. I continued to share her designs and design process and video after video kept going viral. Just like me, the public seemed to love watching how Kaia’s mind worked while designing.”
Kaia’s designs often feature comfortable and stretchy fabric, so that she can still move and play, while still feeling confident and fashionable. In the six months, she’s been designing, she has grown skills both in and out of fashion.
“By far the best thing to come out of this entire experience has been the increase in confidence and self-esteem that we’ve seen in Kaia,” says Tonya. “Kaia has to work hard for every success that she gets in school. Harder than many children her age. So to have something come so easy to her, so natural to her, and then be recognized and acknowledged for that talent has just done wonders for her confidence.”
As a homeschooled kid, Kaia’s curriculum can revolve around the things that she is interested in. Tonya believes that this freedom has allowed all three of her kids to understand mathematical concepts in ways that are practical and interesting to them. It also allows for more time to be spent on practicing their passions. For Kaia, sewing is what she does for fun as well. All of the time and energy that she puts into fashion has allowed her to grow so fast.
@middle.momSomething brand new for Kaia! She did amazing! She was able to custom fit this outfit and it works better than anything we’ve bought in a store! 💜🖤♬ The Greatest Show – Panic! At The Disco
“Since she is making multiple outfits every week, she is always learning and trying new techniques which has helped her to improve incredibly fast,” Tonya tells Love What Matters. “She’s also really brave and not afraid of messing up. Since she is not a perfectionist, it allows her to try things and fail the first and sometimes second and third time and not feel discouraged but rather feel motivated to figure it out.”
Just as sewing clearly brings Kaia so much joy, her mom hopes that her videos and account can do the same for others.
“You never really know what is going to resonate with people and what social media platforms are going to choose to push out and what kind of gets hidden,” Tonya says. “I think in Kaia’s case, people were really wanting something positive. We were all struggling after a really heavy period of time during this pandemic, and Kaia and her obvious joy in her creations provided a much-needed lightness.”
Kaia’s journey has been featured across many major news platforms as well as to her social media audience. As she continues to learn and grow, the world is sure to see bright things from Kaia and her designs.
This article was written exclusively for Love What Matters by Anna Steingruber. Follow Tonya and Kaia Aragon pf Colorado on Instagram and TikTok Submit your own story here and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.
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