We’re excited to announce that we’ve welcomed a new leading lady to the team! Liezel Oosthuizen joined the Worn family as our new Operations Manager. Liezel comes from a tech startup, where her event and client services experience developed both the company and her nonprofit client’s success. While her passion lies with logistics and operations, she is driven by Worn’s creative work and mission to empower women. Originally from South Africa, Liezel has lived in Europe and moved to the US at the age of 14. Here’s a quick Q&A between Nicole Corbett, CEO of Worn and Liezel to help you get to know her and see why we couldn’t be happier to have her on our team.

N: What was the #1 thing that made you want to work at Worn?

L: The #1 thing that drew me in is the incredible team of women who, together, have managed to build the most uplifting and collaborative work culture that is unlike any other. I felt it the second I stepped into the office for the first time and knew I wanted to be a part of this family. They care about their clients the same way they care about each other and that’s the recipe and special sauce for empowering women to lead and be successful!

N: Describe your first week at Worn. Was it what you expected?

L: It was like a party when I walked in and everyone was just as excited to see me as I was to see them! With a decorated desk and a wonder woman balloon, I was ready to take on my first day. I loved getting to know the team over a cozy lunch and really enjoyed diving straight into the work. By the end of the day it somehow felt like I had been working there for months because everyone made me feel so welcomed and comfortable.

N: Why are you passionate about empowering women?

L: We’ve come so far but it’s shocking how much ground we still have to cover to reach true equality for women in the world. It seems so simple that men and women should have equal opportunities in economic participation and political representation, but the progress we need to see is happening all too slowly. Empowering one woman to lead means that she can turn around and empower ten more women to be strong and stand up for their rights and to go after powerful positions in the workforce. We can speed up the change we need to see and make a lasting impact by working hard to empower the women around us. I want to see true equality for women in my lifetime!

N: Who would you invite to your dream dinner party?

L: Ooo fun! First on the list is Nelson Mandela, my grandma and Jesus. All are my heroes and would be able to provide all the wisdom we could wish for. Michelle Obama is also there with her plus one. Brene Brown and Seth Godin both teach me so much about living boldly both personally and professionally and I’d be honored to have them in conversation. To keep things fun, Jimmy Fallon, Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones are all there to keep everyone laughing. I also need to be in the same room as two of the greatest talents of our time, so Meryl Streep and Beyonce are there and probably sitting at the heads of the table. To complete the most amazing dinner party of my life, my Worn family will be there to enjoy every second of it with me!

We’re excited to announce that we’ve added to the Worn family! April Qi joined the Worn family last Monday as our new Designer. April Qi is a Chinese-Canadian living in Brooklyn, NY. She studied at The New School and has dabbled in many industries, from hospitality to fashion to tech. Here’s a quick Q&A between Nicole Corbett, CEO of Worn and April to help you get to know her and see why we couldn’t be happier to have her on our team.

N: What was the #1 thing that made you want to work at Worn?

A: Worn’s mission statement. I talk to so many designers who love to design but feel as though they’re not making an impact, so finding Worn and learning that their mission aligns with my own felt like finding a golden ticket. It felt like a chance at accomplishing two things I’m passionate about, design and helping women. Also taking a look at Worn’s website and Instagram you can see how close the team is and how positive the culture is, and that has always been important to me. 

N: Describe your first week at Worn. Was it what you expected?

A: My first week at Worn was a blur – it was during a particularly busy week and I was given trust and responsibility from the get go and personally I love learning that way. I was part of every meeting, every brainstorm, and immediately felt like I belonged. That was also partly due to the team’s warmth the second I walked through the door.

N: What is one of your favorite design projects you have worked on?

A: One of my favorite design projects was a passion project of mine that I named Power to the Postcard. It was after the election and I wanted to still participate in the conversation and dedicate some time to making a difference on things that I felt were important. I created postcard templates targeting specific issues that were being threatened. I shared the idea with my colleagues and we teamed up, reached out to some contacts to find a location and a liquor sponsor, and hosted a postcard writing party to our senators and representatives. We counted almost 300 postcards on a Monday night.

N: Why are you passionate about empowering women?

A:  I have been surrounded by strong women raising and guiding me every day, and I think it’s important to do so for others and give back however I can – whether it’s giving design advice, giving an inspiring pep talk or just being there to listen. Things are certainly not equal now, and we still have a lot of work to do. Which is why I’m passionate about passing a better world to the next generation.

N: Who would you invite to your dream dinner party?

A: It would be just me and J.K. Rowling, eating Shake Shack and talking about Harry Potter.

One thing is clear, the women of F*it have no room for bullshit. Thursday night, Cynthia Salim, CEO of Citizen’s Mark, Tracie Egan-Morrissey, Editor in Chief of Broadly, and Gina Hadley, founder of The Second Shift shared their personal stories of getting blown off, passed up for promotions, told to dress differently, told they wouldn’t make good bosses, and then they called bullshit on it and found ways to succeed anyway.

Cynthia convinced the best manufacturers in the world to make her blazers, Tracie convinced Vice Media to hire her to found a feminist channel, and Gina made her work fit her lifestyle and started a company that made that possible for all women. Here’s a snapshot of each woman’s story. Stay tuned for the complete videos on YouTube.

 Cynthia Salim CEO Citizen's Mark Blazers

The only way you’re going to have negotiation power is if you have someone else to go to.
— Cynthia Salim

Cynthia Salim, founder of Citizen’s Mark, which makes responsibly made blazers for women on the rise, taught us all that you’re never too small to matter. When she was first starting out, getting wool manufacturers and factories to pay attention to her was a struggle. Despite flying to Italy and Portugal and driving hours to the factories, once she got home, no one would return her emails. She wasn’t Armani or Stella McCartney placing 10,000 yard orders – she was Citizen’s Mark, which was a totally new brand, but full of potential.

So she got back on a plane (using miles!) and showed up in Italy and Portugal at these factories repeatedly. She learned that if you’re there in person, they can’t ignore you. You’re not just an email on a screen anymore, and they agreed to work with her. She convinced the top factories in the world to let her place tiny orders because Citizen’s Mark is small, but it’s getting top quality blazers for women right.

 Tracie Egan Morrissey Editor in Chief of Broadly

Tracie Egan Morrissey Editor in Chief of Broadly

I was told women make good managers but not good bosses.
— Tracie Egan-Morrissey

Tracie Morrissey shared the unbelievable story of how she convinced Vice media to start a feminist channel and hire her to lead it. After founding Jezebel and seeing no room for women in leadership positions at Gawker, Tracie decided that the industry needed a media outlet for women, by women that could afford to write about the issues that women care about.

So she cold emailed Suroosh Alvi, one of the founders of Vice Media and told him she had some ideas. This is the kind of meeting you prepare for or blow it, and she wasn’t going to blow it. She designed a deck, putting in quotes from the media about Vice being a male-focused channel (which they didn’t like but listened to), rented iPads to hand out to everyone in the room and made her case for a new feminist channel to the team. The meeting ended with “yeah I get, you’re hired, what’s next?” And the rest is history! Broadly launched in August 2015.

 Gina Hadley founder The Second Shift

Gina Hadley founder The Second Shift

The ROI on the hustle sucks.
— Gina Hadley

Gina Hadley, founder of The Second Shift, has lived many lives. She’s been an entrepreneur, global agency executive, startup founder, stay at home mom, and even Catholic school administrator (that didn’t last.) Throughout her journey, she learned that your personal circumstances, whether you’re a mom, move to a new city, or are transitioning to a new stage of life, you should never let your situation jeopardize the potential you can have in your career. Gina started The Second Shift so educated, accomplished, high level executive women could go back to doing the work they love, no matter what.

 Made Real Vodka

Thank you to our sponsor Made Real Vodka for supporting the women of F*it and whipping up delicious Moscow Mules for the night. P.S. We love that you’re #selfmade

ATTEND: Find out more about F*it and sign up to be a speaker or attend a future F*it storytelling night, click here.

PHOTOS: See photos from Wednesday night’s F*it event and other nights, also click here.

VIDEOS: Watch videos from previous F*it speakers on YouTube.

WORN: We’re a mission-based creative agency that empowers women to lead.

 

Last month, Worn CEO Nicole Corbett spoke with Elayne Fluker, founder of Chic Rebellion Media and creator of the Support is Sexy podcast to talk about “The Power of the Pivot”. The conversation focused on how to reinvent your company in order to take it to the next level.

In this podcast, Nicole shares her personal story of setting aside her career in foreign affairs to follow her passion as an entrepreneur. Sharing her insights into how Worn transformed from a magazine into the digital agency it is today. Check out her mind hacks for how to think differently about your business while developing your own potential as an entrepreneur.

Here are a few pieces of advice for entrepreneurs who want to shift their perspective and their companies along with it:

  1. Do everything you can to see the situation from a new perspective. Perhaps, admit that what you’re currently doing isn’t working.
  2. Decide where you want to be in a certain amount of time. Find what could be standing in your way. (Maybe it could be yourself?)
  3. Do not underestimate yourself. Assume you can do twice what you think you can do.

There is something powerful that happens when you’re met at a crossroad. Learn more from Nicole and Elayne by listening to the podcast above.

The Support is Sexy initiative is home to an online community for women and podcast interviewing successful women entrepreneurs. It’s about building profitable business while also sustaining purposeful lives. Learn more about Elayne and the podcast at ElayneFluker.com.

On this episode of F*it Radio, Jessica González-Rojas, Executive Director of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health.  Listen in, a she shares her personal story of being assaulted by protesters outside a Planned Parenthood and how the experience turned her into an activist for reproductive justice.

Jessica spoke from the stage at the Women’s March on Washington just a couple of weeks ago. As well as at Worn’s live F*it the night before the historic March. This is the story of her political awakening and how something as simple as healthcare turned into a “political act of courage” is what we’re discussing. Take a listen.

Jessica González-Rojas is Executive Director at the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health. It is the only national justice organization working to advance reproductive health, rights and justice for the 28 million Latinas in the U.S.

Learn more about NLIRH and donate at latinainstitute.org/en.

To listen to this episode on iTunes, click here and don’t forget to subscribe! You can also listen on Soundcloud, or your favorite podcast app.  

If you’re enjoying the show write a review on iTunes—or hit us up on Twitter and Instagram. See you on the next episode of F*it Radio every Wednesday.

 

 

We’re excited to announce that we’ve welcomed a new leading lady to the team! Jamie Jordan joined the Worn family last Monday as our new Senior Designer. Jamie is Filipino-American, living in Brooklyn, NY. She studied at Parsons School of Design and spent the next five years working with great creatives to hone her amazing design skills. Here’s a quick Q&A between Nicole Corbett, CEO of Worn and Jamie to help you get to know her and see why we couldn’t be happier to have her on our team.

N: What was the #1 thing that made you want to work at Worn?

J: Confidence & collaboration. Those are two things, but they go hand-in-hand, so I hope they count as one! Before I had even spoken to you and the rest of the Worn team, I researched and studied the projects you had done and was completely enamored. I’ve never worked for a mission-based agency and right away I knew it was for me. The Worn team is not only smart, confident and talented, but most of all, caring! They are true collaborators and motivators; qualities that are incredibly rare to find in any workplace.

N: Describe your first week at Worn. Was it what you expected?

J: I would describe my first week at Worn as the feeling you get from watching the scene in Trolls when Princess Poppy was inviting everyone to her party. Energetic, positive, motivated and most of all: HAPPY! The dynamic at the office is unlike any place I’ve worked at and I feel so lucky! My first project is working on redesigning the Worn website and re-visiting the brand’s color palette. Through this, I’m learning more about Worn and the team.

N: What is one of your favorite design projects you have worked on?

J: My favorite design project would be a branding and packaging design for Jean Prounis, a jewelry designer. Jean designs and hand makes all of her jewelry! She is a small business owner and has great vision for her brand. Because her jewelry is so tactile and personal, she wanted her branding and packaging to feel the same. We went to a printing press in Brooklyn to look through a collection of Linotype typefaces and type set her logo. Just the smell of the ink gave me shivers!

N: Why are you passionate about empowering women?

J:  When you research great designers online, only a handful of women make the list and minority women are close to none. It’s incredibly unfortunate because I have worked with the most talented female creatives that deserve as much recognition and applause as who are regularly recognized on these “best of” lists. Growing up it was difficult finding relatable heroes and mentors. I’d love for the future generation to see a wider range of figures to look up to. Most importantly, to feel that they could achieve their goals!

N: Who would you invite to your dream dinner party?

J: I love this question because I am an absolute eater (easily confused by the term foodie), love to cook and prep for parties (I wish I had a backyard/bigger apt to entertain)! I would invite my mom who’s an incredible cook and sister who’s a chef. They would definitely offer to cook for the party!  Irma Boom is Dutch book designer and my ultimate idol. Also, Massimo Vignelli who designs everything from furniture to signage. A few years ago, I saw them both speak at a book design panel and they were a riot! They both have amazing quirky personalities and incredible insight on the design industry. My dream has always been to meet Michelle Obama and Princess Diana! I think I wouldn’t be able to speak if I was in front of them. sAlso, I would love to converse with some great entertainers: Tracee Ellis Ross, Queen Bey, Denzel Washington (my celebrity crush), Daenerys Targaryen (I’m not opposed to riding a dragon!) and 2 Dope Queens: Phoebe Robinson and Jessica Williams.Saving the best for last: My Worn family!

Want to work with Worn? Get in touch with Jamie at jamie@worn.nyc

For those of you who missed it F*it DC this month, we’d like to share with you three videos from three incredibly fearless women. This F*it was the first that actually brought us to tears. Those tears came from incredible stories of triumph and overcoming hardship. Watch their stories below.

Sign up to attend the next F*it in D.C. of New York City here.

Brandy Butler

Brandy Butler, President of ADC Management Solutions shared the story of having to say no to her aunt, the matriarch of her family, when she reached out for help and asked Brandy to do something she felt was extremely unethical and would have put her out of business. Ultimately, Brandy said no and paid a very high price for it. She was shunned by her family, uninvited to Christmas, and became an outcast in her own family. Still, had she not made that decision, she’d be out of business today. Watch her story in the video above.

Sonal Shah

Sonal Shah, Executive Director of the Beeck Center for Social Impact and Innovationand Senior Advisor to President Obama spoke about times when she chose “fearlessness.” She started by telling the story of moving to Sarajevo at 26 to open their Central Bank, when she knew nothing about opening a Central Bank. She was dropped off on the Serb side and told “we’ll pick you up in 2 weeks.” She also spoke about her decision not listen to other people’s advice and take a year off after her time in the White House to take care of her dying grandmother. Watch her video above to hear it in her own words.

Michelle Freeman

Michelle Freeman, President of four companies, including part owner of the Mavericks, Mystics and Caps and Chairman of two non-profit foundations spoke about making your mess your message. Michelle Freeman had a child alone at 23, was a drug addict, on food stamps and ultimately lost her husband to a tragic accident. Michelle rose to the occasion and took over her husband’s real estate business when he passed. Despite everyone (including other women) saying, “Why are you still here? Why don’t you just take the money and go take care of your babies?” She chose to stay and grow the business she loves. She is dominating multiple male-dominating industries- construction, real estate and sports and owning her story.

Far too many people are looking for the right person, instead of trying to BE the right person.
— Gloria Steinem

Women entrepreneurs F*it Worn

We want you all to ask yourselves the same question we asked everyone at F*it:

What is your dream for yourself that you’ve never voiced aloud because you’re not 100% confident in yourself that you can get there?
— Worn

We posed this question to our breakout groups and we overheard one woman sheepishly say “well… it’s silly but… I want to be a backup dancer for Beyoncé.” The woman next to her about fell over and said “That’s crazy because my best friend is a backup dancer for Beyoncé- I’ll put you two in touch.”

That’s what it’s all about! Let’s make dreams reality.

Promundo promotes gender justice while preventing violence through engaging men and boys in partnership with women and girls. This year, coupled with Fatherly, and Johnson & Johnson, Promundo is hosting the State of American Fathers Summit. A platform where the country’s leading influencers, policymakers, and game changers to come together to discuss what it means to be a father in America. 

When Promudo chose Worn to produce this video campaign, we saw it as an incredible opportunity to carry out our mission of empowering women, through working on a campaign to support men in being better fathers.

Our challenge on this campaign was to develop a concept that would portray the diversity of fathers in America. Capturing the genuine struggle, joy, and challenges of raising children in today’s world. We needed the perspective of real fathers, and that’s what we brought.

Our approach was to produce a compelling mini documentary of real stories about men’s struggles with fatherhood, and what it means to them to be a father. 

Worn cast 5 real fathers and their children and partners to tell their stories on camera, certainly inspiring us immediately. We carefully crafted each question to bring to light the hidden truths of being a father. From there, the emotional storytelling came naturally. Each unique family brought an incredible amount of truth and light to the project that we couldn’t help but love. 

The final video above will debut on June 14th at the State of America’s Father’s Summit. Follow the conversation at #AmericasDads.

Supporters

Here’s what some of Promundo’s biggest supporters are saying about this campaign:

Jessica Seinfeld, Founder & Board President of GOOD+ Foundation

#AmericasDads report lays out a plan for how fathers can be positive role models for children & equal partners in parenting.  – @JessSeinfeld

Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood Federation of America

It’s crucial #AmericasDads “are becoming more involved in parenting & sharing the equally important responsibility of housework & childcare.” —@CecileRichards

Anne-Marie Slaughter, President & CEO of New America and author of Unfinished Business: Women, Men, Work, Family

The state of #AmericasDads is as important as the state of America’s moms for our collective health & overall wealth. —@NewAmerica’s @SlaughterAM

 

 Dear America,

Today we awoke in a parallel universe where the first woman President hasn’t actually become President. Where a candidate that does not share our values of female empowerment, will be President. What does this mean for Worn and the people who share our mission? It means our work just became 10x more important overnight.

We firmly believe that more women leading and building companies lifts up the economy and that leads to a better world for everyone. Women still hold up half the sky. That has not and will never change.

Let’s not forget that women hold tremendous economic potential and we will continue to work to turn that potential into power for the benefit of everyone, regardless of politics. We will continue to work with women. With men. Organizations that build and grow businesses, launch impactful campaigns, design bold creative work that lift women up.

If you’re a woman who runs a business, is launching a business, or already leads in business and wants to lift other women up in the process, let us help you.

If you’re a man who believes that women deserve equal opportunities to succeed in business, and wants to put the talents of women to work on your business, we want to work with you.

If you’re an organization that is dedicated to furthering gender equality in some form, get in touch with us. Let us use our talent and passion to help reach our collective goals.

We’re all in this together.

Forever yours in the hustle,

Worn

PaperChef is a fantastic brand that puts food preparation at the center of creative expression, bringing friends, families, and entire communities together in celebration. Through their parchment papers, PaperChef takes a classic French cooking staple and reimagines it for a modern world. From on-trend foodies to the environmentally conscious we shaped the project to stick to honest ideas.

Logo and Branding

Our challenge was to take the original PaperChef logo and brand colors, and place them in a new refreshed digital environment. We felt that one that is honest, natural, and that letting the colors and flavors of the foods shine through was perfect. All while staying true to other existing parchment packaging. Not to mention the entire website needed to be fully translated into French for Canadian users.

We approached this redesign by dissecting who and what the PaperChef name and image really is. The process began with reshaping the brand around a new image style. The new style guidelines resulted in imagery that felt like home to us. We went for the feeling of someone’s quiet kitchen on a Sunday afternoon. Emphasizing white, natural light, and muted colors, with a focus on the process of cooking to give warmth. We brought people together, rather than just the final plate.

This mood was the jumping off point for new messaging, typography, and additions to the original PaperChef color palette.

 Imagery compiled in a mood board directed new website photography and was a jumping-off point for the overall mood. 

Imagery compiled in a mood board directed new website photography and was a jumping-off point for the overall mood.

Web Design

We jumped from the overall strategy into an extensive web design process, beginning with sitemapping, wireframing, and rounds of designs. Throughout the entire web design process, we had to account for the new brand vision aligning with the existing brand components, as well as develop a flexible site. We needed one that was able to be easily updated as new foods come into season. Easy navigation in both French and English, and Shopify integration for online purchasing were key.

After compiling the new website copy in English, it was translated into French and the site was duplicated. As users visit the site from an IP address in a French-speaking region, they are seamlessly served the French version of the site. We subsequently integrated Shopify as well. This allowed bundling of PaperChef products bought directly from the new website, rather than moving between browser windows.

In the end, PaperChef.com was completely transformed from a static site to a new robust vision that showcases the company’s strong values right next to their outstanding product. You can view the new website and purchase your own PaperChef parchment here.

 The PaperChef Story page, showcasing imagery with natural light and a unique page structure that used pull quotes to help the user's eye move down the page.

PaperChef’s Story page, showcasing imagery with natural light and a unique page structure. Using pull quotes to help the user’s eye move down the page.