The Uniform Project

Founder / 1 dress. 365 days.

“What sounds at first like an exercise in neo-Puritan making-do in a time of austerity is in reality a celebration of the very thirst for inventive novelty that has defined consumer culture for years”
~ Rob Walker, New York Times

A few moons ago, I took a break from my day job to conceive and launch the Uniform Project — a creative experiment that grew into an online phenomenon. In May of 2009, I pledged to wear one little black dress for 365 days as an exercise in sustainable fashion, and documented my daily efforts online to raise funds for  the Akanksha Foundation – a non-profit organization providing education to children living in Indian slums.

For the next 365 days, I reinvented my little black dress solely using accessories that were either vintage, handmade, reused or donated. By the end of the year long challenge, the U.P site received over 2 million hits, gaining over 10,000 social media followers and raising over $100,000 in donations for the Akanksha Foundation.

The Little Black Dress was made available for sale, made locally in limited edition. The 365 dresses sold out in less than a week and raising another 10K in funds for the cause. U.P received worldwide recognition and was featured in major media outlets ranging from the New York Times, The Guardian, CNN, BBC, TED, the Times London, the Los Angeles Times, MSNBC, NPR, PBS, Vogue, Elle, Glamour, and Marie Claire to hundreds of fashion, culture and design blogs, as well as numerous TV shows around the world. I also had the honor of being named one of Elle Magazine’s Women of the Year.

Following the success of the first year, we opened up the platform to other women, creating the U.P ‘Pilot Series’ – a monthly series of micro-challenges featuring 1 Dress for 1 Month for 1 Cause. U.P unveiled a new face in a new dress each month allowing the ‘pilot’ to take on the 1-dress challenge to fundraise for a cause of their choice.

During the course of U.P, I had the wonderful opportunity to tour the world and speak about the project. Publishers in Japan also released a book about my 365 day  challenge in July 2011. The book is now available on Amazon Japan

To see the complete ‘dailies’ and learn more about the project, please visit



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Matheiken Inc
Creative Director / Design Director / Designer
Design-centric creative practice for web, mobile and experiential realms. Specializing in product development, gestural and haptic interfaces, data visualisation, service design and social innovation.
Brooklyn, NY