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Influencing the Haute Couture Fashion World

“It's not about silk, it's not about human glory; it's about him.  And everybody needs him.  It's about his love.” Gowns by artist and designer Aleona Isakova have been seen on runways all over the world. She creates with one goal in mind, to glorify God.

She says, “If you have God inside your heart, you just can receive from Him and create in freedom. But, live without God and without Jesus it is darkness.  And I remember that time.”

Aleona grew up in Latvia under communist control, where atheism was the only acceptable belief. She knew nothing of Christianity, until she was twelve and read a library book that mentioned the Bible.

“I came to the lady in library and asking ‘Do you have Bible?’  And she was shocked.  She told me, ‘We don't have such a books in library,’” Aleona says.

Then, the librarian informed Aleona’s father—a military officer—about her question. “I never saw him so angry when he told that ‘Never ever say ‘Bible,’ uh ‘Jesus, God!’’  It's first time I hear about Jesus.”

More than ten years would pass before Aleona learned anything more about Jesus. As a teen, she became a prolific artist, holding her first exhibition at just fourteen. But the pressure to please an audience at away at her.

She says, “Terrible fear come to my heart because I feel, ‘If I do something wrong, people don't love me.’  A lot of artists, a lot of famous fashion designers [commit] suicide, or use drugs because this kind of fear and emptiness inside, it is so terrible, it's-it's hell on the earth.”

By her twenties, Aleona was married, had her own shop in Moscow, and over the next several years was building a name for herself in fashion. After the fall of the Soviet Union, Christianity was no longer suppressed the way it had been during Aleona’s youth. In 1991, she met American missionaries who told her about Jesus.

“I always tried to understand the meaning of life, but without Jesus, you feel empty, so alone. And when I opened my heart for Jesus, it was like explosion. Light. - what I looking for all my life,” Aleona recalls.

Believing that the fashion world and her new faith were not compatible, she closed her shop. But God had plans, and around that time, Aleona said He gave her a vision of gowns depicting the Bible and life of Jesus. She says, “I saw such a beautiful collection, represents creation, how Jesus was born, crucifixion, and resurrection. And I saw dresses. I truly realized it's a calling from heaven.”

In Russia in the early nineties, even food was hard to come by, let alone fine fabrics. But, trusting God to provide a way for combining faith and fashion, she and a Christian friend started their own company—Favore Fashion House.

“We borrow $300 in the bank for all document stuff.   We start-start company because God told us.  And God used it.  And we had clients and we share with all clients about Jesus.”

Aleona still dreamed of creating the Biblical collection, but funds for such an ambitious project were out of reach. Then, she received a message from a Swiss businessman she’d met at a fashion show.

Recalling what the businessman said: "’I don't know who you are. Every morning God talking me about you.  We must to have a meeting.’"

He decided to fund her collection, and over the next four years, Aleona and her team created over fifty gowns, using only the best fabrics and materials.

“Our collection is for His glory.  The best of the best.  And I believe if Christians create more perfect stuff for his glory, we can catch more secular people,” Aleona says. 

She’s shown the collection at events all over the world and in numerous media appearances. More importantly, she no longer creates out of fear to please an audience, as she once did; instead Aleona creates as an act of worship.

“You know, I don't care what people told – telling about my art.  It's just between me and him.  And I look at heaven, and God look at me and smiling and he loves that stuff!  And I'm happy.  It's freedom!  It's real freedom to know him!”

In 2011, Aleona and her husband Sergey moved to the U.S., where she mentors young designers and continues to create new works.

“I bring the collection for America because I believe keep American Christian country, that it's important for all world.  And I believe it's going to inspire new generation of artists and designers, fashion designers to create for God the best of the best,” she says.

More than anything, Aleona is grateful for the relationship with Jesus that gave her life, and her art, an eternal purpose.

“Jesus, he's my best friend. And because I’m an artist. I can see his beauty everywhere.” 

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