A Miami-based online boutique offers a chic option of expression for Christian faith through athleisure wear for both men and women.
“It’s something that the Lord has placed in my heart to do,” said Julie Gonzalez.
In 2018 Julie Gonzalez decided to focus her energy on bringing life to Poiema of Grace, a fashion apparel company with designs that spread the Gospel. Poiema (po-ee-ma) is a Greek word for workmanship, and through God’s grace, we are His workmanship.
“In Ephesians 2:10, God describes us as His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we could walk in them,” Gonzalez said.
Realizing that there was a lack of brands focused on spreading the Gospel in a fashionable way, Julie wanted to design clothing that offered the word and armor of God with the concept that through wearing Poiema of Grace one can share the word with others.
“If someone sees you wearing a hat or shirt that says Fear Is A Liar, they might not ask you about the meaning but they might google it and become more aware of what the bible has to say,” Gonzalez said. “It ignites a curiosity, starts a conversation for people to share their own testimonies and hopefully leads to discovery for those that are uncertain of the message.”
The inspiration came when Gonzalez saw a woman wearing a pair of comfortable athleisure pants that Gonzalez liked and asked the woman the brand. Being told that they were buddha pants, Gonzalez then went online to buy a few pairs for herself.
“When I received the pants in the mail and opened them at home, I was convinced that at that moment I heard a voice say to me, why are you buying these pants, they are buddha pants and you don’t believe in buddha,” Gonzalez explained.
She describes the moment as if she was having a conversation with God and after telling the voice that the reason she bought the pants was that there were no pants similar to this for the Christian faith, the voice told her that she was going to create them.
“At first I thought no way because I didn’t have the money, my family is my priority and the timing didn’t seem right, but then my mind switched and I said to myself, I am going to do this, I am going to create a fashion brand for the Chrisitan faith.”
With a bachelor’s degree in fashion merchandising from Florida State University and a career in retail, Gonzalez felt inspired to do the good work she believed she was created to do through fashion.
“Poiema of Grace is a form of ministry and gives back to society by spreading love and hope,” Gonzalez said. “There are a lot of empty brands that stand for nothing, and if they can do it, I believe I can do it too, and share the hope and love that Jesus teaches us.”
Through partnering with different churches, organizations, and schools, Gonzalez has been able to donate back a portion of Poiema of Grace sale proceeds to support efforts which include ministry, mission trips and raising funds for special needs such as autism. Some of the churches and organizations that Gonzalez has donated to include Ben Coursen’s Hope Generation Organization, Calvary Chapel in Tri-Cities Washington, Unique Families for Autism, and King’s Christian School. Going forward, Gonzalez plans to continue to donate to churches and fund mission trips to further spread the messages of the Gospel all over the world.
Poiema of Grace is available online and eventually, the brand plans to expand and open a boutique in Miami to have a place where people can visit and host community events. For more information and to make online purchases, visit poiemaofgrace.com or follow the online boutique on Instagram at @poiemaofgrace.