CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - A new Charlottesville nonprofit is looking for ways to stitch the community together. Managing Love is offering free, educational fashion classes to teach people about the importance of up-cycling your clothing.

Angie Washington’s interest in fashion started early.

“My mom taught me,” said Washington.

In the following years, she's sewn together her passion with her work as a team leader at EcoChic Boutique.

“This is where I can put my scientific background and my passion for fashion to use,” said Washington.

The boutique offers up-cycled clothing, some are made by refugees living in the Charlottesville area.

“Although fashion is our passion my number one priority is education and raising awareness,” said Gwen Cassady, founder of EcoChic Boutique.

Volunteers like Washington are raising awareness by teaching free community sewing classes at the boutique. The store is also in search of students and their creativity for an upcoming fashion show.

“We are creating for love Mother Earth, were seeking 2,020 Virginia students to up cycle DVDs or recycled CDs,” said Cassady. “From the leaves to the trees, the bees to the seas, what you would miss most on Mother Earth.” 

They're asking children of all ages to decorate discs based on a theme. Those discs will be re-purposed, with denim, to create a 100-foot long dress chain.

“All of the 2,020 discs that will weigh 88 pounds I will carry and walk peacefully both in Richmond and Washington D.C.,” said Cassady. “I want as many children as possible to be able to utilize their voice.”

Cassady said the project is about sending a message and for volunteers like Washington, it's a chance to find beauty in an unexpected place.

“I appreciated the idea of recycling clothing and still feeling beautiful in it,” said Washington.

If you would like to decorate a disc to be featured in the Love Mother Earth Fashion Show, you can drop them off at the EcoChic Boutique located in the Shops at Stonefield.

The boutique will offer those free fashion classes from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursdays - Sundays.