Ladies, Wine & Design

Ladies, Wine &
Design
Ladies, Wine &
Design

Empowering women & non-binary
creatives around the world đź’Ş

Ladies*, Wine** & Design is a global non-profit initiative with chapters in 250 cities worldwide. LW&D was started by Jessica Walsh after this happened and she realized that sometimes peers can be competitive or unsupportive of one another. Only a small percentage of creative directors are women or non-binary, and LW&D wants to help change this through mentorship circles, portfolio reviews, talks & creative meetups.

*Our space is inclusive of all women, non-binary, agender and gender non-conforming people. Self-definition is at the sole discretion of that individual. If you feel you could benefit from a space meant for people who do not identify as men to share ideas and collaborate, you are welcome. **Alcohol is entirely optional; you can drink tea, coffee or whatever you like!

August Events
August LW&D Luzern

AUG 6 | “Creative at the Touch of a Button” Tattoo artist Elle Priselle uses a tattoo machine as her catalyst for creativity. Come prepared to exchange ideas and explore your own catalyst with Elle by talking about inspiration and general creative processes!

August LW&D Dallas

AUG 8 | “Balance + Boundaries” At this event there will be casual conversations about balance through self-care and establishing personal boundaries that can benefit both the creative practice and our mental state.

August LW&D Hong Kong

AUG 13 | “The Fabrick Lab” Elaine Yan Ling Ng will be the guest speaker for this event. She is the founder of The Fabrick Lab and she plans to share her experience in Creative Entrepreneurship and how she empowers women through design.

August LW&D Minneapolis/ St.Paul

AUG 13 | “The Power of Your Why” Our guest speaker Katie Steller will discuss her experience overcoming mental health challenges in her practice and how it defined her why. Come prepared to exchange ideas and discuss your why!

August LW&D Dornbirn

AUG 22 | “Lounging with Kaleido” Karoline Mühlburger from Kaleido will talk about her journey and how she built a successful design career. She will talk not only about her career but about how her experiences over the years have led to the creation of perfect design.

August LW&D New Orleans

AUG 13 | “Life as a Female Creative” At this event, there will be a brutal yet honest and open chat about life as a female creative. Come prepared to bare all the highs and lows from your journey!

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Answers
01.
Why are the majority of leadership positions held by men?

There are many reasons for the lack of diversity in leadership roles historically:

 

Sexism in the workplace
There are studies that show that companies are often consciously or unconsciously biased in favor of candidates who are men, which leads to more men being hired, getting raises, and receiving promotions. While this is changing, there is still a pay gap today between candidates who hold the same job titles. Women & non-binary people of all racial and ethnic groups earn less than white men, and studies show there is an even larger wage gap for people of color. If you’re in a leadership role, be cognizant of this bias and make sure raises and promotions are given out based on merit.

 

A lack of diversity in mentors or idols historically
Open a design history book, and you’ll see that almost all the famous designers mentioned are white men. The design industry used to be a boys club at the top, lacking diversity across both gender and race. With a lack of representation among their role models, underrepresented people can be deterred from pursuing creative positions. Thanks to the pioneering activists and feminists before us, this has been changing and many of our favorite designers working today are other women and non-binary creatives! But, there is still a lot of work to do. Intersectional feminism is imperative as we push for equality for all people in the creative field. We must adopt an intersectional lens as we battle discrimination in the creative industry. So, what does this mean? We must take into account people’s varying experiences, such as someone who is both a woman and a woman of color. In order to have equality and representation of all women and non-binary people in the creative field, we can champion and celebrate the successes of one another, offering guidance and mentorship to underrepresented creatives starting out in their careers. If you’re in the creative industry and can offer your mentorship or guidance, do contact us to get involved.

 

The responsibility of childbearing
Many people start families and have children around the age when they are furthering their education or entering the labor force. Historically, most cisgender men continued working and did not hold child-bearing responsibilities, leading to a gender imbalance in terms of career success. Many call this the “motherhood tax,” referring to the financial burdens and sacrifices involved in motherhood.

 

Trans and non-binary people in the workplace
Discrimination and prejudice against non-binary people is a form of sexism that happens in the workplace across all industries. This discrimination affects every aspect of both a person’s working and personal life. Studies show that nearly 60% of transgender people report having experienced employment discrimination, including being fired, denied a promotion or harassed. It is imperative that we make a conscious effort for equality of all people in the workplace, respecting and accepting everyone for who they are. Trans and non-binary people have the right to be able to live, dress and have their gender respected at work.

02.
What can I do to help change the numbers?

While the numbers are staggering simple things can change them:

 

Promote Your Peers

In studies, successful women and non-binary people are shown to receive more backlash compared to successful men. Root for one another and celebrate each other’s successes instead of tearing each other down. We can all help in various ways, big or small. Share your favorite designers on your social media, invite more underrepresented voices to your design conferences, make sure there is diversity in books on design, and so on.

 

Leadership at Companies

As a leader, make sure underrepresented creatives are considered for promotions, receive feedback to get to higher positions, and create action plans that help build leadership skills. Do not penalize or discredit people for needing work-life balance and flexibility.

 

Support Women & Non-Binary People in the Workplace

Be supportive of all people in your workspace. Use gender-neutral language in the workplace ask and use peoples correct pronouns. In addition, women and non-binary voices are often not heard or their ideas get lost in meetings. Make sure they have their physical spot in conversations, not getting elbowed out by others. If someone interrupts them, be direct and ask the interrupter to wait for their turn to speak. If you see someone’s ideas are immediately getting unfairly shut down, repeat, reference, and credit that idea over and over. This technique is called amplification and we owe this to Obama’s administration.

 

Mentor Women & Non-Binary Creatives

If you’ve found success as a creative, take the time to mentor others who are starting out in their careers.

 

Don’t Tolerate Sexism, Racism, or Homophobia

Do not normalize forms of sexism by accepting mansplaining, manterrupting, gaslighting or bropriating. If you see racist/sexist/homophobic behavior in public or at home, speak up against it. If you see this behavior online, you can report the behavior or language. To stop sexist and racist behavior, we must adopt a zero tolerance policy.

 

Resources on combating racism: Everyday Feminism, Amnesty International, Ted
Resources on combating sexism: HuffPost, Elle, NPR Podcast Directory, Girl Scouts
Resources on combating homophobia: Human Rights Campaign, The Washington Post, The Guardian

Mansplaining

The act of explaining things in a condenscent way to a woman immediately assuming she does not have sufficient knowledge about a certain topic.

Manterrupting

Unnecessary interruption of a woman by a man, who assumes he needs to “educate” her. Then he explains obvious things to women as they are incapable of understanding it.

Gaslighting

It is the emotional violence of manipulating a woman making her question her own sanity or capacity. Do you know that guy who calls all women “crazy”? He is the personification of gaslighting.

Bropriating

It happens when a man appropriates of a woman’s idea and takes credit for it.

03.
Is there really still a pay gap between men and women? What is the pay gap for non-binary people and trans women?

Women earn less than men in 439 of 446 major U.S. occupations. The average for men is $55,835 and $43,845 for women. As designers, women earn 79% of their counterparts who are men, and this number is even lower for women of color. The most effective way to change the pay gap in the industry is hiring women and non-binary people, paying attention to their results and efforts, and rewarding them equally. It sounds simple, but we are not always aware of how much unconscious misogyny we might have. This means constantly questioning ourselves and making equality a central topic in our lives.

 

Studies show that after transitioning, transgender women’s earnings fall by nearly one-third. This finding echoes the lower value placed on women in the workplace. The trans and non-binary communities experience poverty at 4x the rate of the general population. Studies and conversations about the gender pay gap need to be more inclusive, rather than just about comparisons between cisgender men and women. Most corporations do not recognize people’s genders outside of male and female, and for this reason, there are very few studies on wage discrepancy for non-binary people, and this needs to change.

04.
Besides the pay gap, how does sexism present at the workplace?

Sexual harassment is still a major problem. 75% of those who experience sexism do not report it because of embarrassment or feeling like it could jeopardize a promotion or even lead to being fired. But even when they do report it, little is done. More than half of the official allegations of sexual harassments result in no charge. Motherhood also plays a big role in the industry, as women with children have less of a chance of being hired.

05.
I am not sexist / racist / homophobic? Or am I?

Most people won’t deliberately identify themselves as misogynistic, racist, or homophobic. However, there’s something called unconscious bias, which is the unconscious discrimination of certain groups of people: from race to religion to sexual orientation. This can manifest in different ways, whether it’s resisting to trust the choices of a woman or non-binary person or responding differently to a person of a different color than you. We can do this without consciously realizing it. It is our duty to stay open-minded to our own human defects, and continuously take a critical look at our own behaviors and privileges.

 

Examples of privileges include being white, cisgender, college educated, physically or mentally healthy, or financially stable. Why does this matter? Privilege can affect everything from how someone is treated in society on a daily basis to what basic human resources a person has access to. If you have privileges, you can use them to help fight for equality of more marginalized, less privileged people.

06.
What is intersectional feminism?

LW&D takes an intersectional approach to feminism, recognizing the complicated experiences of individuals based on the varying intersections of privilege and oppression. Feminism does not only champion the equality of white, cisgender, straight women. Feminism is inclusive of all people, championing equality for everyone — no matter their gender, sexual orientation, race, nationality, age or ability. Watch this ted talk talk by Kimberlé Crenshaw for more context.

07.
Are the events free?

Our NYC-based events are free to allow access to all people regardless of financial backgrounds. Occasionally, some of our other chapters charge a small fee to cover the hard costs of their events (speakers, space, etc).

08.
How can I support or join Ladies, Wine & Design?

There are many ways you can support us!

 

Join Your Local Chapter  

We have a map on our homepage — check it out to see if you have a local LWD chapter in your city. If you do, make sure to attend an event and ask the hosts if you can assist them in any way!

 

Start a Local Chapter 

If your city doesn’t have a local chapter and you want to be a host, email us at info@ladieswinedesign.com and we’ll get you started!

 

Accessibility At All Events

At our NYC events, we make sure that all our venues are accessible, and we encourage all chapters to do the same! If you are hosting an event, make sure to use this checklist to make sure your event is accessible and that you have accessibility information listed for upcoming events

 

Sponsorships

If you have space you can offer up in your city for events or can provide free wine or food for one of our events, do contact us about sponsorships! We’re happy to give social media love in exchange for your support. Before now, we’ve taken no financial donations and this project has been entirely self-funded. Currently, &Walsh is the sole financial sponsor of LW&D, but we’ll be looking for additional sponsorship this year. We’d love a corporate sponsor to help with larger events to help us hire staff to keep the organization running. The organization will never be for-profit, this money will be used entirely on our events & staff. Email us at info@ladieswinedesign.com if you’d like to discuss sponsorships.

 

Follow Us

You can also follow us on Instagram and follow all the amazing creatives we feature. Championing other women and non-binary creatives is one of the best ways to support Ladies, Wine & Design, so one day we don’t need to exist.

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