Downs Designs’ $10,000 fundraising spike from a Kickstarter campaign in a span of 24 hours has been an unprecedented and much-needed boost for the small business dedicated to providing clothes that fit and look great for children with Down syndrome.
Karen Bowersox didn’t know where her initial dream would lead when she started Downs Designs over four years ago, inspired by her granddaughter Maggie, born with Down syndrome. After noticing Maggie would trip over her pants, Bowersox got to work, and Downs Designs was born in 2009. The small business offers 20 styles of jeans that fit the unique body shape of a person with Down syndrome and feature an elastic waist; soft, stretchy denim; and no button or zipper. These styles provide confidence, independence and pride in sense of style — and the journey doesn’t end there.
Bowersox says, “I can’t even express it, the emotion I get from every email, from the mothers or the caregivers, of the gratitude that they’ve never had anything like this that fits well. They’re so thankful someone is doing this. I want to do more, and it’s just so cost-prohibitive. I started a Kickstarter campaign to make a variety of clothes, rather than just one pair of jeans. I want to have dress pants, shorts and khakis.”
To take the Downs Designs clothing line to the next level, Bowersox and her team turned to Kickstarter in hopes that with the support of the community and their wide customer base, including a Facebook fan page of over 70,000 people in 45 countries, they can expand their line into never-before-designed styles for those with Down syndrome.
As of Sept. 3, they have raised over $20,000 in just 20 days, with $10,000 in just over 24 hours. With just 9 days to go, they need the support of the community to reach their goals. Those interested in supporting the project may visit the Kickstarter page (kck.st/1vQydoa) to learn more. The campaign will run through Sept. 14 at 7 a.m. EDT. If the goal isn’t met, no money changes hands.