Gracie’s Gowns makes colorful and personal hospital gowns for children
Jessica White, the founder of Gracie’s Gowns, was first inspired to create her organization when volunteering on a rescue squad seven years ago. Throughout her experience as a medic in medical transport and pediatric critical care, she realized how many children were transported naked or uncomfortable wearing adult hospital gowns. While many gowns didn’t fit, many other children would have allergic reactions from the chemicals used in the hospital laundry rooms.
“During my time as a medic, my youngest child fell, got a concussion and was admitted to the hospital,” White said. “When she was admitted, the hospital didn’t have any gowns in her size and she was stuck in her dirty clothes for three days.”
According to White, a Liberty University alumna, Gracie’s Gowns is a faith-based mission that provides custom hospital gowns to children with chronic and life-threatening illness. These gowns are made to make children feel comfortable, functional and safe. Each gown is personalized with the child’s favorite pattern and their names embroidered along the bottom.
“Every gown is personally designed in my house or in someone else’s home,” White said. “There are no mass productions like in other organizations.”
According to White, she always had a passion for children, sewing and non-profit work. At the time, White did not possess the skills to create an organization on her own. Because of her busy schedule, White was not able to attend college residentially and started looking around for online programs.
“Going to school on campus was not an option for me, plus I was a single mom at the time,” White said. “I finished my bachelor’s degree online through Liberty and started my master’s degree in Executive Leadership the next day.”
After graduating from graduate school in 2018, White turned her hobby for sewing into acts of ministry and dedication. White’s friend, Crystal Oughton, lost her daughter from a hard battle of against a neuroblastoma, a cancer that attacks nerve tissue. Through that experience, White decided to dedicate her organization to Oughton’s daughter, Gracie.
“When creating my organization, I asked my friend if I could name it after her daughter,” White said. “It was Crystal who gave me my organization’s name, Gracie’s Gowns.”
White enjoys working from home. She is able to spend time with her husband Brandon as well as her four children, Aubrey, David, Madeline and Alaina. By working from home, White is able to organize fundraisers for her organization and even personally deliver gowns to children and their families.
“I try to deliver gowns personally to someone if they are within a certain distance,” White said. “Typically, we incorporate a little care package with each gown for the child and their loved ones.”
The Klosowki family recently posted a picture of their nine-month-old daughter Tasmin, in the hospital wearing her personalized Gracie Gown. Tasmin suffers from a life-threatening illness called Tuberous Sclerosis Complex. Throughout her many trips to the hospital, the Klowsoki family realized that Tasmin was uncomfortable in the hospital gowns that were provided. The Klowsoki’s found out about Gracie’s Gowns through a Facebook friend who had gotten a gown for her son.
“We ordered two gowns, and they are beautiful,” Elise Klowsoki said. “My daughter could not have any clothing with metal or anything that pulled over her head or arms because of the EEG and IVs”
The Klowsoki family is thankful they were able to find Tasmin a soft gown that was easy to snap on and off for her comfort.
“It’s their gown,” White said. “It’s a part of their story, their journey and who they are.”
More information can be found on the Gracie’s Gowns website.