Meeting Francesca Kennedy equals instant girl crush. She’s warm, grounded, inspiring — and a fearless business woman on a mission. Originally from Guatemala and now based in New York, Kennedy founded accessory brand Ix Style (“water” in the Mayan language) to empower women and provide clean drinking water to children from her native country.
It was on a trip home in 2010 that she witnessed the contaminated water that the locals were drinking and cooking with on a daily basis, and she decided to take action. She started her brand by creating shoes that would have a positive impact on the community, while simultaneously creating jobs for women. One colorfully patterned pair yields water for 3,000 children and with that 1,000 women are employed. She also donates 15% of her profits from every purchase to the cause, and (it gets even better) with each shoe purchased, a tree is planted.
She has co-designed shoes with brands from Goop to GAP, and this fall, watch her compete on Lifetime’s Fashion Inc., a Shark Tank-like show, where she and other fashion entrepreneurs will vie to get funding for their companies, from the likes of Rebecca Minkoff and Katia Beauchamp, the founder of Birchbox. Suffice it to say that she is one busy lady! She let us follow along with her morning routine, and spilled on her favorite beauty products, the art of staying centered through meditation, and the one piece of advice that can inspire any company to thrive.
*Photography & Styling by Alison Engstrom