Thursday, April 21, 2011

A New Baby and a Breast Cancer Diagnosis

We received a beautiful testimonial from Anne that we feel honored to share with you today. In the picture below, Anne is getting ready to celebrate the birth of her 3rd son. She looks radiant in her Anita designer hospital gown and you can see the joy and excitement in her face as she anticipates the arrival of another blessing to her family. You would never know by the picture below that Anne had been diagnosed with breast cancer just two weeks prior to this day.

We found out about Anne through friends who wanted to buy her some Annie & Isabel hospital gowns for the birth of her son and for her upcoming breast cancer surgery. Anne was given four Annie & Isabel hospital gowns by different people which we knew was a true testament to the type of person Anne is. We were so touched to read an excerpt from a blog that Anne's husband started in order to keep family and friends updated on her progress. Here is what he wrote:

"As you know, my beautiful wife and best friend was diagnosed with breast cancer on Friday 11/12/10. We were shocked to hear this unfortunate news. After we had time to process the facts, one of the things we quickly realized was how much love and support there was around us. I am at a loss for words. I do not quite know how to thank all of you for your kind thoughts, prayers, messages and gestures. You have truly touched both of our hearts. Anne is an amazing person as many of you know. This fact is evidenced in part by the wonderful friends and family who surround her. Thanks again to all for their continued support and a special thank you to our families for all the love and assistance they have given already."

"To my wife:
You are such a unique and extraordinary individual, mother, wife and friend. To know you is truly to love you. You are the bright light in our family and you make me and the boys happier than I can articulate. I love you to pieces and will always be here for you no matter what comes our way. Stay strong and I know you will prevail."

Prevail she has. Anne had her first surgery to remove the breast cancer only 4 days after giving birth to her son. You can tell she was ready to fight in her sassy "Susan" hospital gown!!

She had a second and final surgery for her breast cancer and sported the "Elizabeth" hospital gown.

Here is what Anne said about wearing her Annie & Isabel hospital gowns:

"I want to sincerely thank you again for your gorgeous gowns. I have to tell you, when I was pregnant with my third son, I was hoping to get one after seeing the beautiful photos that Brenda Bisharat took of glowing mommies. I got my wish and then some. I was gifted two gowns at my baby shower. I felt so special as everyone at the shower admired their beauty. I wore the Anita at the birth of my third son Markos. I can't tell you how much it meant to me to feel so pretty in my designer gown because days later I knew I would be facing my greatest challenge."

"I was diagnosed with breast cancer at 30 years old, 8 months pregnant, with my son. My doctor induced me at 36 weeks pregnant and four days later I was back in the hospital getting a mastectomy. After my diagnosis, my sister Audrey gave me the Susan gown and I also got the Elizabeth (breast cancer gown) from some dear friends. I wore the Susan gown for my mastectomy because I wanted to feel sassy and put up a good fight! It put a smile on my doctors face and after seeing it he got me a stuffed dog with similar print to carry so I would remember to not lift or use that arm. After that surgery, I found out that the cancer did not spread and I can happily call myself a survivor!"

"Last but not least, I wore the Elizabeth gown in February for my last surgery. I had so many compliments from nurses and doctors. My doctors first response was how nice the gown was but then he was even more impressed when he realized how easy it was to access my bandages. It was so comfortable and I felt "safe" to walk the halls knowing I wasn't going to give anyone a peep show."

In addition to taking care of herself, being a wife and loving on her three boys, Anne started a wonderful blog called "Livin the Green" and, in her words, this blog is about "cleaning out the old self to become a healthier, wiser, greener, and more organic person." If you want to follow along in this journey and change your old ways too then you should follow along!!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Annie & Isabel Celebrates One Year Anniversary & Introduces the "Feel Better Campaign"

Annie & Isabel just celebrated its one year anniversary and, when we think about what we have accomplished over this last year, it really excites us. We received our first batch of gowns on April 9th, 2010 and haven't looked back since. We have been so humbled by the number of companies, mom bloggers, and Annie & Isabel fans who have wanted to spread the news about our company to others. We thank every single one of you because you have helped make us who we are and you have also helped countless women have a much more stylish, comfortable and dignified hospital stay!!

As a one year anniversary present to ourselves, we have given Annie & Isabel a website makeover and are excited to share it with you now here:

We really love it and hope you do too. We want to thank Foss Marketing Group for helping us build a website that we absolutely love! While browsing around the website make sure you scroll over the pics on the homepage and the pics in the shop area. Check back often, too, as we will be continuing to add testimonials to the testimonial section.

We also want to take this time to announce a new and exciting program we are going to launch. This program is extremely important to us because a part of our mission has always been to give back to the community. We have done this from the beginning with our Elizabeth gown by giving back to breast cancer patients. You can read about that HERE.

Our new program is called the "Feel Better Campaign". We have always known that our hospital gowns make wonderful gifts for people who are sick in the hospital. What we didn't realize when starting this business was how hard it would be to not just GIVE people our gowns. Through twitter and facebook we have "met" some wonderful and brave people dealing with difficult diagnoses. Deep down we would love to just give each and every one of these people one of our hospital gowns because we know our hospital gowns provide dignity, comfort and a small sense of control during a time when people feel most vulnerable. We are also both nurses and our instinct is to always help people in need and so when we find out about someone who has to be in the hospital we want so much for them to have one of our hospital gowns because we know it will brighten their stay!!

We have already seen how the gift of one of our hospital gowns to an ill person can bring a smile to a person's face during a difficult time. You can see that here from Kristin, Katie and Beth!! We have always said when you look great, you feel better!! The problem is that if we gave gowns to everyone ill in the hospital then we would quickly be out of business:)

Only days after suffering a cardiac arrest

Hours after open heart surgery

Days after receiving a lung transplant

Annie & Isabel's the "Feel Better Campaign" is a program in which we will give away an Annie & Isabel hospital gown to one deserving person on a semi-annual basis. We want you, our fans, to be involved too!!! We want nominations from people on twitter, facebook and , YOU, our fans!! You just need to email us at and tell us about the person you are nominating and why you think they would love to have one of our hospital gowns.

While we are just announcing this program now, we have already been giving back in this way and we would like to introduce you to the first recipients of Annie & Isabel's the "Feel Better Campaign". The first recipient was Noelle, who is now a breast cancer survivor. She was the first to wear our Elizabeth gown and you can read her story HERE.

Lauren was our second recipient. Lauren is a teenager who was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma in April of 2010 and is now cancer free. She wore the Isabel designer hospital gown during her treatments. You can read about her HERE.

Beth Peters, who has cystic fibrosis, was our third recipient. We "met" Beth through twitter and, at the time we met her, she was on the transplant list to receive new lungs. When we found out through twitter that she had been called to the hospital for a possible match, we knew we needed to send her our gowns. We couldn't imagine her having to spend so much time in the hospital with those yucky gowns. Beth's sister picked out her Annie & Isabel hospital gowns. She picked the Elizabeth since that is her sister's name and the Annie. She told us she liked the Annie because of the fact that our great-grandmother lived to be 98 years old and she wished that for her sister. How wonderful is that??!! We hope that for Beth too. Beth is doing well with her new lungs and she recently wrote a very nice blog post about us HERE.

Happy anniversary to Annie & Isabel!! We look forward to many more years of providing patients with more stylish, dignified and comfortable hospital stays. We want to thank all our fans as you have greatly helped us to be where we are today and we don't take that for granted. We appreciate each and every one of you!!!!