Advocacy is about changing hearts and minds with the gifts that you have. Some of us are great speakers, others talented writers. For Michael Kuluva, the man behind the fun and flashy Tumbler and Tipsy brand, fashion and creativity is his gift. And last night, he used this gift to help raise the profile of arthritis at New York Fashion Week by working with us at CreakyJoints.

 

The synergy betimg_9417ween Michael and CreakyJoints was perfect. To put it simply, he gets it: He understands that having rheumatoid arthritis can make life unpredictable, that you need to have a support system, that people living with arthritis can achieve their dreams and shouldn’t be stigmatized by a society that doesn’t always recognize how difficult chronic disease can be (and who doesn’t love sparkles, glitter and tutus?).

The evening of the show was filled with eccentric and caring people. We spoke to a person who had connective disease for decades only to be diagnosed two years ago, and a daughter looking to find help for her mother. We provided our education and advocacy resources to the fashion community — because yes, fashionistas can get arthritis, too.

We felt that each of you was with us yesterday because you make the diverse tapestry that is CreakyJoints. We hope we did you proud by showcasing the beauty of our CreakyJoints community.

Thank you, Michael, for using your platform at New York Fashion Week to educate and advocate for arthritis.

We’re not the only ones who thought last night’s New York Fashion Week event was a success. Check out other news coverage of the partnership between Tumbler and Tipsy by Michael Kuluva and CreakyJoints:

— In an interview with HealthCentral, Michael talks about why he kept his RA diagnosis a secret for five years, his reasons for finally going public, and how his experience with the disease inspired his latest collection.

— Over at The Mighty, Michael discusses the collection in detail, noting, “It really shows the joints affected by arthritis. It’s an explosion of colors on joints that would light up on test for arthritis.”

— Fashion Daily Mag was ahead of the game with this preview of the collection and the show.

To see images from the event, view the photo gallery below: