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Southern Colorado woman starts nonprofit to raise awareness about Long COVID

The Painted Dress Project
Posted at 10:41 PM, Jun 12, 2024

COLORADO SPRINGS — A southern Colorado woman who is living with Long COVID has started a nonprofit to help raise awareness about the illness.

It's called The Paint Dress Project, and it originally started during the pandemic when AnaKacia Shifflet, a wedding and couture designer from Rye, started painting dresses to help her cope.

“I wanted to throw paint at something, but not just anything,” said Shifflet. “I wanted to throw paint at one of my treasured original gown designs for the purpose of destroying it. On the days I didn’t feel well enough to work on the project, I came up with a plan for how I would go about this – I knew it would turn out awful, but I still wanted it to have meaning. I cried while I tossed, poured, and sprayed my creation with paint; it felt incredible, a huge release. In the end – very surprisingly – the result inspired me and I found that I loved it!”

To learn more about the project, you can visit the Academy Art & Frame Company, which is located on North Academy Boulevard from now until June 27. Two of Shifflet's wedding gowns will be displayed at the front of the store.

One of the dresses is the original dress that Shifflet created during the lockdown, and the second was done at Academy Art & Frame last Thursday to celebrate the release of her book Throwing Paint.


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