Fashion For Israel is bringing together small and large businesses in the industry to help bring awareness and support for the Israeli hostages and soldiers since the horror of October 7th.
It was created because award-winning designers, boutique owners and model/influencers were shocked and angry at the brutal rape, kidnappings and murders of women, children and grandparents in their eighties.
After overcoming the initial shock of watching news out of the Middle East, many initiated campaigns to donate percentages of sales to multiple charities in Israel. Social media awareness helped them in most cases.
Unlike other businesses, the fashion world is mostly about women for women. While it started as an industry that was dominated by men dressing women, today’s fashion industry leaders are women, whether designing, owning the fashion houses, branding, aesthetics, store and salon owners, modeling and even in fashion media.
Jocelyn Gordon started her accessory items collection Jocelyn in 2001. Today, her collection can be bought at Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, Intermix, ShopBop, and many other specialty stores worldwide.
"I love to give my customers a dose of 'fashion therapy' with my cool, innovative, sexy must have accessory items. The first piece a woman should create in her wardrobe is her accessory,” adding, “In a time where I feel Jews are being oppressed I feel that it’s my job as a fashion designer that has a platform to reach people. I am donating the proceeds from my website to the UJA-Federation of New York. Never in my lifetime would I or could I believe this would happen to the Jewish people,” stated Gordon.
Another designer who is featured in the campaign is Shani Grosz. whose collections are featured in Saks and Nordstrom. Her grandparents from her mother’s side were holocaust survivors. For Grosz, (no relation), it was always so hard to imagine what was going on in the world that can create so much hate until she started walking near her showroom the last few days, where graffiti against Jews was sprayed.
“I don’t relate to hate … My designs are all about inclusivity, and my dresses reflect love and respect for people from all backgrounds,” Grosz says. “There is something to learn from all cultures. Judaism is about loving your neighbor, no matter what religion they are, how they practice, or where they come from. If I can bring a little joy through my dresses and a lot of friendship along the way, then I feel accomplished.” Donations have been made to multiple organizations and will continue as long as needed.
Both Jocelyn and Shani collections have been worn by multiple celebrities including reality stars, news anchorwomen and musicians as featured in the press and social media.
Motek Essentials, a small candle company, is donating 50% of candle sales from its website to AFMDA (American Friends of Magen David Adom) to help Israel's national medical emergency, disaster, ambulance and blood service as well as bringing the hostages home.
Its founder, Rachel Cohen is a massage therapist and cosmologist. She is an American and married to an Israeli. She felt so helpless after what happened on October 7 2023, anxiously realized that she needed to do something as fast as possible to help and support all the helpless people in the Holy Land.
Orna Simkhai, jewelry designer and mother of the founder and creative director of Simkhai, (Jonathan), has been peacefully protesting routinely with hostage family members. She has already sent several hundred of her original prayer bracelets to Israel for soldiers and hostage family and friends. Additionally, she is raising money for items Israelis need that are being bought in Israel by her family and friends.
While supporters have overall been friendly, every person who I have spoken to has experienced backlash for speaking up for Israel. They have also been targeted in nasty comments on social media. That hate has made each more determined to stand with Israel.
An indirect result of this campaign is bringing awareness to both the small and women owned business communities during holiday sales seasons. These boosts in early holiday attention are important in what will seem like a lackluster year because of a failing economy and worries of war.
Cindy Grosz is an award-winning media personality, brand ambassador and Jewish activist. She is the host of “The Jewess Patriot” radio show on WGBB Radio and through Jewish Podcasts out of Jerusalem. She ran for Congress in 2020 and was a Jewish advisor for the National Coalition for Trump.
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