A Penn State mechanical engineering student from Dallas, Texas with a passion for fashion: meet Dianne Valera, owner of the Instagram page @diannes_psucloset.
Before Covid, first-year student Dianne wanted to use her crafty sewing skills and interest in trends and fashion to create unique tailgating clothes for herself. When she decided not to live on campus for the fall 2020 semester, she created @diannes_psucloset on Instagram to sell some of her personal tailgate clothes and donate some of the proceeds to charity. A PSU fan for many years, Dianne has been collecting vintage PSU apparel and has plenty to go around.
“Fashion has always been an underlying passion of mine because I love picking outfits, going to the store and picking something old, something with history, and turning it into something more modern that we can wear now,” says Dianne.
Her PSU clothing account is not her first venture in upcycling clothes. Dianne also runs her own personal thrifting account @rnr_thrifts with 14K followers. Dianne enjoys upcycling and sharing her clothing creations, as it gives her an outlet to explore her love for fashion, but she also advocates for sustainable fashion and size-inclusivity in doing so. Dianne sells clothes ranging from sizes XS to XXL. She believes that everyone should be able to participate in sustainable fashion, regardless of their size.
“I don’t really do this business for profit, 50% of all proceeds are donated every four to six weeks. I do this to promote sustainable, slow fashion,” says Dianne.
Dianne has donated the proceeds from her thrifting accounts to the relief for the Yemen Crisis, Feeding America, Black Lives Matter and Stop Asian Hate. She selects charities with messages that are personal to her and that she feels need attention or support at the time.
Dianne keeps her clothes on-trend. Pictured on her account, there are crop tops, oversized sweatshirts, windbreakers, shorts, skirts, sweatpants, tank tops and other upcycled creations. She draws inspiration from trends that she would incorporate into her own wardrobe. The cow-print sleeves on this sweatshirt came from inspiration from trendy furry tote bags. Dianne loved the way that the cow print fabric she bought for her tote bag looked with Penn State’s blue and white, so she incorporated it into her creations.
“I don’t limit myself in terms of creativity, I let my creativity flow throughout the day,” says Dianne.
The future for the Instagram page is growing every day. As of Apr. 10, @diannes_psucloset has almost 1000 followers. When she comes to campus in the fall of 2021, Dianne is hoping to set up a pop-up shop in State College for people to purchase her PSU tailgate creations in-person in order to cut down prices of shipping.
Check out @diannes_psucloset and @rnr_thrifts on Instagram!