Esther Havens Mann is a bridge-builder, fostering relationships across continents, cultures, perspectives and an advocate for those in need. She has captured iconic imagery for charity: water, TOMS, and dozens of other organizations that impact our world for good. More than a photographer, she is a storyteller — capturing not just a person’s portrait but their true essence and what makes them shine. Esther has photographed the stories of people in 60+ countries on 6 continents over the past decade. Her worked has raised millions of dollars in funding for organizations ranging from clean water initiatives, anti-trafficking efforts, job creation, health care, and school access for vulnerable populations. No matter the story or country, Esther’s objective is to always make sure each person she photographs feels respected, empowered and cared for during the storytelling process. We were honored to have Esther design a dress for us this year.Read More
Alex is a model, speaker, writer, content creator and body/self love activist in Los Angeles, CA. We knew when we invited her to design a dress for us that it would mirror her creative zest for life. Here’s our interview with Alex Michael May, designer of “The Alex” dress launching this September.Read More
Last winter, we held our third annual Dressember Advocate Design Challenge, giving our community the opportunity to pick a winning dress design. Terry Murillo’s t-shirt dress took the prize and is now being brought to life in our 2019 collection. Terry is a natural born teacher and maker. She lives in Southern California where she lives with her husband. They have been adventurously married 30 years strong, and we have three amazing adult children as well a son and daughter-in-love(law). As she enters a season of empty nesting, after having had homeschooled for 27 years, she is revisiting a lot of things she placed on the shelf. Terry has a certification in nutrition and a BA in Ministry and enjoy helping people live their best life. Let’s learn more about Terry and why she designed her dress the way she did.
Jennifer Morrison needs no introduction (but we’ll give her one anyway). Jennifer Morrison is a director, actor, and two-time Dressember designer. You may recognize her as Emma Swan from 'Once Upon a Time' or Dr. Allison Cameron from 'House'. She recently directed an episode of the show EUPHORIA for HBO. You can also catch her this September in the fourth season of 'This is Us'. Last year, Jennifer Morrison designed a gorgeously classic dress for our 2018 Collection. This year, Jennifer is back with “The Jen”, a chic and flirty wrap dress. Let’s hear what Jennifer has been up to since she designed for us last year.Read More
Jess Torres (They/Them) is a queer indigenous migrant born in El Salvador and raised in New York City. Jess is a "Survivor Leader" in the anti-trafficking movement and the Survivor Leadership Program Coordinator at The Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST) as well as Co-Chair of The National Survivor Network, organizing a collective of over 300 human trafficking survivors and a local Los Angeles group called "Resilient Voices". Jess is also a 'Trauma Justice' Policy Fellow with the Women's Policy Institute through The Women's Foundation of California; sponsoring AB 865 and cosponsoring SB 493 this legislative cycle.Read More
Vera Leung is passionate about creating social change through inspired people, powerful stories, and compelling design. She is the Creative Director at International Justice Mission, a global organization fighting to end slavery and violence in our lifetime. Vera is leading a bold team of storytellers to create ground-breaking, award-winning work. She has taken her passion and skills to countries all around the world to tell the stories of those enslaved in some of the darkest situations. Her work brings these issues to light in the most beautiful ways that initiate change and celebrate the hope that can be found in the darkness.
Arielle Estoria is Spoken Word Poet, Author, Dance Party Enthusiast Emcee and Event Host Speaker, Model and Actress. Her motto of "Words not for the ears but for the soul" stems from her dedication to remind her audience that words are meant to be felt and not just heard. Arielle’s first EP, a collection of music and poetry called Symphony of a Lioness is now available on iTunes or Apple Music. She is Co-author of two self published collections of poetry: Vagabonds and Zealots (2014) and Write Bloody Spill Pretty (2017) which can both be found on Amazon.com. She is made of sass and good intentions, has a deep love for car karaoke, brunch and flowers.
Elisabeth Huijskens is the Chief Creative Officer and Founder of ethical fashion brand, Trades of Hope. She is an entrepreneur and blogger who is passionate about social justice and empowering women to live confidently. Learn more about Elisabeth and hear about her dress design in our interview with her.
Jennifer Morrison is a woman of many talents. You may recognize her from her roles as Emma Swan in "Once Upon A Time" or Dr. Allison Cameron from the tv series, House. As an actress and producer, it can be easy to get involved in the hype of fame. But Jennifer Morrison lives out grace and class on the daily. Which is why we knew that her dress design was going to be just as timeless and classy as she is. As a 2017 Dressember advocate, Jennifer showed deep commitment to the fight to end modern slavery. We're honored to have her support and are excited to present to you, "The Jennifer" dress design.Read More
Homelessness, similar to the injustice of human trafficking, can feel like an overwhelming issue to tackle. Caitlin Crosby, founder of the Giving Keys didn't let that stop her from doing her part to end the homeless crisis in Los Angeles. The Giving Keys was created to employ people transitioning out of homelessness through the creation of hand stamped vintage keys. We've partnered with The Giving Keys in the past to offer custom keys for our community. This year, we were honored to have Caitlin design a Dressember dress. Her design, "The Caitlin" is what we like to call a power pose in a dress.Read More
Penny Lovell is a veteran designer for the Dressember Dress Collection. Her sweatshirt dress last year was a fan favorite. As a red carpet stylist to the stars, Penny has a keen eye for fashion. This year's dress design, "The Penny II" took the best parts of her original sweatshirt dress to create an oversized sweatshirt dress with dolman sleeves and a tapered silhouette. You might not ever want to take this dress off -- good news for those of you out there looking to take on the extra challenge of wearing the same dress all December long!Read More
Laura Spencer, best known for her roles in "Bones" and "The Big Bang Theory" can now add "Designer" to her portfolio. Last year, Laura took on the Dressember challenge and raised over $7,000 -- enough to fund a rescue mission to bring survivors of trafficking out of their bondage. We were grateful when she agreed to open up a new creative stream to design a dress for us!Read More
At the beginning of 2018, we invited our community to submit dress designs as part of our design challenge! The winner of that challenge was apparel design student, Danielle Urban. Her wrap dress design stood out as well as her explanation for why she designed it the way she did: “To me, a wrap dress with flounce sleeves represents that feeling of a dance party, and the green color is pulled from my favorite places in nature. As I have come to understand and appreciate my freedom, it has become increasingly important for me to recognize my privilege, and to advocate for people that do not have the privilege and freedom that I have. I want to use my voice for those who do not have one, and my designs to provide work and healing for those who are on a path to freedom.” Eight months later, her design has come to life as part of our Dressember dress collection!Read More
If you grew up in the 90's then chances are you recognize Jessica Rey as the White Power Ranger on Disney's Power Rangers WildForce. If you think Jessica left her superhero days behind her once the show stopped airing, think again. As a "Mompreneur", Jessica Rey started Rey Swimwear in 2009 which is now a popular line of ethically sourced and produced swimwear (they have other clothing too!). We knew that Jessica's dress design would be timeless like her design inspiration -- Audrey Hepburn. Meet "The Jes", a dress to last the seasons.Read More
Blythe Hill: that name is probably not new to you. As founder and CEO of Dressember, Blythe was the creative mind that came up with the idea of launching a dress collection to give Dressember advocates ethical options to wear during the month of December. In 2014, she linked arms with Katie Martinez of Elegantees to make this idea a reality. Blythe's designs always mirror her unique style. Last year's "The Blythe" featured groovy elements including a keyhole back and bell sleeves. This year, the "Blythe II" combines a turtleneck with a maxi dress to provide you the comfort and warmth every Dressember advocate desires to survive the winter.Read More
Anna Ptak is a Policy Consultant, Fashion Designer, and Speaker. We met this brave woman in 2017, and since then she has been a source of great encouragement to us. As an Overcomer of trafficking herself, she has committed to using her voice to fight for others. It was an honor to have her design one of our dress collection designs this year. We're grateful to introduce you to Anna Ptak, designer of "The Anna".Read More
Here at Dressember, we aim to restore dignity to all women through fashion and creativity. We love seeing our advocates using fashion to make a difference in the world, but as we utilize this industry, we must also educate ourselves on the dark side of it. The fashion industry has developed bad habits over the years, causing heavy pollution to the environment and using forced and child labor for clothing production. It became increasingly more important for us to offer transparent, fair-trade options in preparation for the campaign, thus the Dressember Dress line was born.
And we want YOU to design our next piece.Read More
We recently released a kimono on our web shop in collaboration with Symbology. Symbology "employs women artisans from India and the West Bank, each bringing beautiful cultural artforms to their collections. Symbology aims not only to produce beautiful clothing but also to preserve traditional art forms in each garment — from Indian block printing to Palestinian weaving and Native American embroidery." The custom kimono features Symbology's signature baby cacti print in black & ivory on one side and a vintage poppy flower in a soft cream & grey on the other. The styling options are limitless--throw it on over a crisp button-down and your fav jeans for a casual getup, or pair with a dress for a night out. Plus, it is just the right weight to keep you toasty during the chilly months. Today we're introducing you to the designer of this gorgeous reversible kimono, founder of Symbology, Marissa Heyl.Read More
We recently released a jewelry line in collaboration with BOSCHMA. Today we're introducing you to the designer of the gorgeous dainty Dressember necklace and earrings, Jen Boschma.
Jen, you design gorgeous jewelry pieces! What drove you to the jewelry industry?
Oh my gosh, thank you so much! I first started jewelry because I needed a creative outlet that I could control. I was acting at the time and felt like so much of my career was out of my control and in someone else’s hands. I took one class and was hooked. So much has happened since I started jewelry - I co-founded an inspirational jewelry company called Tribe of Dreamers with Annie Walker that helped raise money for non-profits, and now I’m pursuing my own conflict-free, custom wedding ring line which felt like a pipe dream on day one. I still feel so lucky that this is my ‘job’ - it honestly feels like a gift that I get to be a little part of the most beautiful moment of peoples lives.Read More