Dena Burton is in the center. Photo credit: Karim Saafir
Los Angeles-based fashion designer Dena Burton has been quite busy creating amazing women’s ready-to-wear garments, producing fashion shows, pursuing philanthropic work and traveling; however,, she took a moment to chat with rolling out.
How do you shift from making clothes to making a difference?
Fashion design is not only a passion of mine but it also affords me the opportunity to help women feel empowered and beautiful when they wear my designs. I have been blessed to travel all over the world to places like Africa, Fiji and Jamaica to give back by using my gift of design as a platform to make a difference in the lives of women, children and families.
What other ways do you give back and what inspires you to do so?
Each year brings a new level of anticipation and excitement surrounding my involvement and inclusion of giving back to various charities and organizations, and this year is no exception. I was honored to be selected as the featured designer for the Special Needs Network’s 8th Annual Pink Pump Affair. The Special Needs Network is a non-profit organization that was started by Areva Martin, and the purpose of the organization is to provide services and support to underprivileged families impacted by autism. As a participant of this event, the Dena Burton Collection presented a runway show featuring a total of 20 looks ranging from day to evening in various shades of pink. It was fulfilling to be a part of this extraordinary celebration of women, where the likes of athlete and TV personality Lala Ali, LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, and OBGYN Dr. Gail N. Jackson were honored and the master of ceremonies was CBS anchor Pat Harvey. It was very gratifying to be involved in such a way that I was aiding in positively affecting the lives of other women, children and families. (Check the video clip of this event below.)
How has being an AKA impacted your life and your work?
As a member of our beloved Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, I feel that my plight to constantly give back lines up with one of our missions, and that is to be of “Service to All Mankind.” The core values of my brand, which are to serve, connect, grow, impact lives, integrity, build relationships, treat each other with respect, and inclusion, also made me a prime candidate to partner with the American Heart Association, where I designed a beautiful red wrap that aided in bringing awareness to the number one killer of women, heart disease. Just as our sorority does things in excellence, elegance, style and grace, so was this campaign.
So what’s next for Dena Burton Designs?
As a result of such great success with the AHA campaign, I have been approached by the Denise Roberts Foundation, an organization dedicated to the research, treatment and cure of breast cancer to do a campaign for the National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The purpose of this campaign is to bring more awareness to this disease and it is our goal to see a myriad of women wrapped in pink wraps to signify the importance of early detection and finding a cure, amongst other things. And like the American Heart Association, a portion of the proceeds will go back to the organization. Once again, I am delighted to be a part of something that supports giving back and being of service. I am a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated and I will always strive to represent the sorority with style, elegance and grace.
For more information on the Dena Burton Collection, go to www.denaburton.com. Check out the photos from Dena’s Pink Pump Affair fashion in the gallery. Photos provided by: Karim Saafir Photography