We Believe That ALL Women Deserve to Feel Beautiful!

Meet our Partners at Uncommon Threads…

With a natural flair for style and a down-to-earth approach to fashion, Wardrobe Stylist and Style Blogger Susan Kanoff has the innate ability to create fabulous outfits for women of all shapes and sizes. A former social worker, Kanoff has in recent years made a name for herself by curating stylish outfits for all body types, personalities and lifestyles and by sharing her experiences in her wildly successful blog, The Midlife Fashionista. She seamlessly (and passionately) fuses both of these skill sets in her role as the Founder and Executive Director of the non-profit Uncommon Threads, an “empowerment boutique” for low income women and domestic violence survivors.  Family Services of the Merrimack Valley is delighted to partner with the organization, located at 60 Island Street in Lawrence, as they champion women employing clothing and style as tools for increasing self-worth.

Open to the public, Uncommon Threads’ clients receive a private styling session with one of their “volunteer stylists” to identify their best styles and colors and how to dress to project a positive image – then receiving up to four complete outfits for a suggested (and able to be waived) $10 donation to the program.  Uncommon Threads was born in the spring of 2017 as Uncommon Closet – a storage space for donated clothing (from apparel makers such as Chico’s, Ecru and French Lessons) which  hosted occasional pop-up shops with all proceeds funding their mission.  Those early initiatives were met with a swell of community support and media attention.  This enthusiasm continues to fuel the organization’s evolution and today, as Uncommon Threads, they identify themselves as a “women’s empowerment center”.  Monthly self-esteem focused workshops and groups provide women with information as well as a place to connect with other women (breaking the feeling of isolation). Future plans include a mentoring program (called “Uncommon Friends”), as well as stress management and beauty services.  Uncommon Threads’ new “Senior Style” program brings their boutique shopping to women in nursing homes and is enjoying much success in their pilot program with Nevin’s Nursing and Rehabilitation in Methuen.  “Our goal is for women to feel nurtured, beautiful and confident by changing the way they view themselves and the way they are perceived by others,” shares Kanoff and her team.  “Although we can dress a woman for a job interview or the workplace, we can also style women who are not able to work due to emotional trauma, age or circumstances. We believe that all women deserve to feel beautiful.”

Relying on an army of 190 volunteers, Uncommon Threads’ Assistant Director Lysanne LaPierre and its Marketing Assistant Elizabeth Mullard (pictured together above) go to great lengths to manage the experience for both their staff and clients.  Andover resident LaPierre, with a long history of supporting local non-profits, sees a real power in clothing and now passionately lends her business skills to the center’s mission of seizing that potentiality.  “Clothes are just a means to an end for us…  Clothes will always be fundamental to what we do here, but our goal is to raise self confidence, self-esteem and self worth so that our clients can achieve whatever goals they may have,” says she.  “We are fortunate to have a fantastic team of volunteers who help us carry out that goal, and we want them to feel (through their service) as though they are truly making a difference.”

There are a number of opportunities for supporting the work of Uncommon Threads… one of which is by donating your barely worn women’s clothing such as shoes, jewelry, handbags and accessories in new or nearly new condition and in-style. All items must be in perfect condition – either new or nearly new, and packed in lightweight shopping bags, or on hangers. Or, maybe you own a high-end piece that you will never use? If so, please consider donating those designer items to their shop, Uncommon Closet at its 60 Island Street in Lawrence   All donations are tax deductible and all proceeds help pay for rent and operating expenses necessary to run the program.   Donations can also be made locally at Salon Navid located at 8 Main Street in Andover.

Items Needed:

  • Leggings
  • Dresses
  • Plus size clothing
  • Denim jackets
  • Skinny jeans
  • Black pants
  • Clothing with tags on
  • Sandals and sneakers
  • Handbags
  • Bras (gently worn or new)
  • New underwear
  • Velvet-covered clothes hangers

Uncommon Closet is open for (“guilt free”) public shopping at its 60 Island Street location on Wednesdays and Fridays from 10 AM – 2PM.  The shop is also available for private shopping events.  Please contact Lysanne LaPierre at:  [email protected] for further information about booking Uncommon Closet for your next personal or corporate gathering.  Family Services of the Merrimack Valley is a non-profit social service agency engaged in game changing work which helps children and families live their BEST lives.  Our purpose is to drive outcomes, and we do so by nurturing inner strengths, teaching life skills, championing emotional wellness and providing vital community-based resources in the Merrimack Valley.

 

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