We've just discovered this new charity called the Dorcas Dress Project. We thought our customers would be as delighted by what they do as we are!
The Dorcas Dress Project is a new initiative set up by designer and dressmaker Maria Skoyles. The project seeks to mirror the qualities of its biblical namesake: Dorcas was a disciple, a dressmaker and someone who supported the poor. Similarly, the Dorcas Dress Project seeks to support people out of situations of hardship. With ethical Christian values at its core, it is proving to be a prophetic statement in the world of fashion.
Although the project is not aimed specifically at clergy wear, their local vicar picked up on how well it sat over her clerical shirt. I think you'd agree. The dress itself is designed to be inclusive of the diversity of God's people: made in just one size, it will fit anyone and is intended to be flattering to any body shape or size. The neckline can be gathered around the neck and the cross-over back provides shape and comfort. As such the dress works for women in all seasons of life, including maternity and nursing.
The charity beneficiaries are provided with resources and training to make the dresses from the Dorcas range. They are then offered work, paid at a level which honors their dressmaking skills and ability. The dress was designed specifically so that it could be made by those with access to few resources (it requires no fastenings or trimmings and can be made on a basic straight stitch sewing machine). Currently the project is working in the UK, but it would like to expand and has plans to work with deprived communities abroad.