They say a new dress can make you feel like a new woman, but a trio of custom-made dresses designed for three teens living with skin diseases helped each young woman own her disease while sharing it with the rest of the world. Mia Johnson suffers from scleroderma, a connective tissue disease that causes hardening of the skin. Emily Haygood has atopic dermatitis, commonly known as eczema. And Alex Schaener has alopecia areata, a skin disease that causes patches of hair loss.
All three patients are part of the extended family of A Children’s House for the Soul, a Houston nonprofit that offers social, emotional and spiritual support for children affected by skin disease and birthmarks. And all three teens appeared in “I Was Made a Masterpiece,” a recent short film commissioned by the nonprofit to educate viewers on the deep emotional impact of skin disease.