Nutrishare Neighborhood Events

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October 3, 2023, 4p PT / 7p ET
Adapting Clothing and Backpacks to IV Tubing

6/14/13--Washington, DC--. CBS News Photo by Chris Usher


At an early age Paula Ries learned to sew garments, her love of fashion design quickly grew in her high school home economics. She knew she would major in fashion after high school and she did just that. She started out at the College of Merchandising and Design at the Louisville Technical Institute of Fashion, and owned her own Women's retail business. She took some time off to get married and live life, then was accepted to Northeastern University in Boston where she fell in love with costume design. While at Northeastern she designed two of the main stage productions and many student productions. Six months after Paula’s divorce she was diagnosed with colon cancer, she was 30 years old. Pretty much everything became non-existent and she focused all her energy on her health, surgery, chemo and radiation. When life was a little more stable she decided to advance her education even further. Paula was accepted into Carnegie Mellon University, where she majored in Costume Design. A year after grad school, Paula was diagnosed for the third time with colon cancer. She lost all of her small bowel and was started on TPN.

One thing about Paula is that she hasn’t let the past 13 years on TPN stop her. After graduating from Carnegie Mellon she went back to her alma mater Northeastern to run the costume shop, teach and occasionally design costumes. Although she had to go back on disability she hasn’t given up her dream just because of being chronically ill.


Instead, she enjoys creating costumes for herself, fashionable art shows, teaching others and taking old clothes and making them new again. In the last couple of years Paula has enjoyed adapting clothing and making backpacks adaptable for IV tubing and central lines. 


Join the Nutrishare Neighborhood next Tuesday (10/3). Paula will be sharing more about her journey on TPN and how she has been able to adapt clothing by hiding zippers, placing side seams, hacks for belt bags and even simple to more complex hacks for IV bags and pumps. All these tips/designs will be posted to Paula’s website. You don’t have to have any sewing skills, come to hang out and meet new friends!

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