Grad Student Turns Rejection Into A Fashion Statement


What a super unique way to not only get over rejection…but to celebrate it.

A PhD student defended her dissertation while wearing a skirt she made of rejection letters.  To make the tiered black and white number, 29-year-old Caitlin Kirby printed out 17 of her rejection letters—from scholarships, academic journals, and conferences—then folded each one into a fan. She connected them in row, and by the end she had a skirt.

She said the idea behind her unique clothing item came out of a desire to normalize rejection and take pride in overcoming it.   Over the years, Caitlin’s rejections have led to great things: Since her doctorate, she’s won a prestigious grant to do further research on urban agriculture in Germany.

Right now, she’s a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. As for what the future holds? Caitlin joked… “I’m gearing up to receive a few more rejection letters, so maybe a longer skirt is on the way”!

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