Senior profile: Mary Alabsew

Mara+Alabsew+will+be+attending+Arizona+State+University.+Alabsew+plans+on+majoring+in+computer+science+and+minoring+in+design.

Laurel Seidensticker

Mara Alabsew will be attending Arizona State University. Alabsew plans on majoring in computer science and minoring in design.

Fashionistas she saw in TV and movies inspired Mary Alabsew to learn how to sew. Ever since she was little, these style icons sparked her interest in fashion and pushed her to pursue the hobby. 

“Even before high school, I thought ‘I’m going to be a fashion designer when I grow up,’”Alabsew said. “It’s always been [my] goal to sew.”

Alabsew learned how to make clothes while taking Fashion Construction I and II classes during her freshman and sophomore years at KHS. Amanda Roberts, her teacher, said her talent and passion for sewing was obvious in class. 

“She had a natural desire to learn,” Roberts said. “[For her final project] she did a few things I hadn’t even taught her. She really took her skills to the next level.”

When she bought her own sewing machine last year, she started sewing at home in her free time, making her own clothes from old pieces she already owned. Alabsew said she enjoys the freedom that sewing gives her to personalize her style. 

“I’ll still buy clothes now and again, but I would rather upcycle them,” Alabsew said. “ I don’t go by fashion trends, more [by] what I like.”

Even before high school, I thought ‘I’m going to be a fashion designer when I grow up’”

— Mary Alabsew

Besides being a fun hobby, sewing gives Alabsew an outlet to express her creative side. She’s always had an eye for fashion and aesthetic, according to her brother Robel Ketema. 

“It never came as a surprise when she wanted to make her own clothes,” said Ketema. “Her creativity shines through in her attention to detail.”

Alabsew’s friends encouraged her to use her sewing skills to start a business when she began making masks during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, she wants to keep sewing a hobby.

“I like to [sew] for myself,” Alabsew said. “I don’t like to sew for other people because I’m not a professional. To me, it’s [still] more of a hobby than a business.”