Mount Tabor High School senior Ainsley Williams knew from a young age that she had a knack for the arts, having self-taught herself how to sew, crochet, and embroider. With the help of a supportive family who encouraged her to embrace her creative side and enroll in various art courses, Ainsley has used her artistic talents to help her community, classmates, and fellow athletes.
When Ainsley’s senior class was searching for ideas for their Homecoming t-shirts, Ainsley’s classmates knew who to turn to. Ainsley’s designing and drawing abilities were so popular among her peers that she was given the opportunity to design the shirts, as well as her field hockey team shirts and the senior t-shirts. By starting out with a paper drawing, she is able to digitally design her shirts using an app called procreate, which helps bring her ideas to life. She also runs a small business through an Instagram account where she creates sweatshirts and thrifted clothing by painting unique designs and patterns. In 2020, she won the Safe Sober T-Shirt Contest hosted by Daggett Schuler Law, which allowed her the opportunity to design clothing for a cause near and dear to her heart.
Safe Sober aims to educate youth on the dangers of alcohol and drug use. Given the increase in isolation over the last year, Ainsley believes it is especially important to relay the Safe & Sober message in stressful times such as the present. According to Ainsley, “Feeling isolated can make people susceptible to making irresponsible decisions. It’s always important to make wise decisions, because you never know when something can go wrong or get out of control. It’s always been in my nature to look out for anyone who might be under the influence of a substance.”
At Mount Tabor High School, Ainsley plays lacrosse, field hockey, and is involved in the Tabor Girls’ Club, where she and her fellow club members pay club dues and work to assist those in need. The Tabor Girls’ Club worked alongside their classmates to help pull off Mt. Tabor’s annual rummage sale, which takes months of preparation and planning. By relying on members of the community to donate clothing, accessories, and various household items to be sold, the Tabor Girls’ Club is able to donate the rummage sale’s earnings to those in need while making memories and gaining valuable retail experience.
As a member of New Philadelphia Moravian Church, Ainsley has also been given the opportunity to volunteer in a remote village in Alaska. During the summer before her sophomore year of high school, she and her fellow church members spent a week hosting Vacation Bible School and Sunday school classes for children in the village, which was one of the most rewarding experiences of her life thus far. Shocked at how isolated and rural the Alaskan village was, she felt blessed to be embarking on the trip of a lifetime, where she was able to volunteer, worship, and build relationships in the stunning Alaskan wilderness. Ainsley and her family love volunteering with their church and are always looking for opportunities to give back.
In her spare time, Ainsley enjoys spending time with her friends, teaching children’s classes at church, and dining at local eateries such as The Loop. She has a passion for shopping at thrift stores and can frequently be found rummaging the racks of secondhand shops throughout the area, with her favorite being any Goodwill location she can find. After high school, Ainsley hopes to attend N.C. State University’s College of Design, and aspires to one day land a career where she can allow her creativity to flourish. Whether she’s designing clothes, displays, or posters, Ainsley hopes to make a living while simultaneously expressing herself through art.