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A young girl suffering from cystic fibrosis is on a mission to raise awareness of her disease — in the most fashionable way possible.
Grace Rose Bauer, 12, launched her fashion line Rosie G in 2013, and now she's getting ready for her biggest fashion show yet, this Saturday in Los Angeles. Her mother Leah Bauer told TODAY.com growing the fashion line with Grace has recently turned into a full-time job.
"She's officially my 12-year-old boss," Leah said. "But I see a lot of potential here. I see how excited she gets, and how excited her friends get, and how inspiring it is. And I'm dedicated to the cause."
That cause is raising awareness and funds for cystic fibrosis, a lifelong disease characterized by a thick mucus that can clog and infect the lungs, block the pancreas and disrupt the digestive system, according to Cincinnati Children's Hospital, one of the leading centers for children with CF. Grace was diagnosed with the disease as a baby, and part of the proceeds from her fashion line — as well as ticket proceeds from Saturday's show — benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
Grace, who takes several medications daily to cope with her disease, told TODAY.com she's always been into fashion: "When I was two years old, I started designing dresses."
"When I'm inspired, I sketch," she added.
Her designs, made for kids, are comfy and colorful, many printed with clouds or roses — "because that's my favorite flower and my name is Grace Rose." Among the most popular pieces are inspirational T-shirts and tank tops with slogans like "stay positive," and a collection of soft, cotton dance pants and shorts.
Grace added that the line is inspired by two places she calls home: New Orleans, where she's from, and Los Angeles, where she and her mother now live. The brand's name comes from her alter-ego — a young girl who wears lip gloss, dresses up and dances in the mirror — named Rosie G.
Many of the models who will show off Grace's newest designs at Saturday's show reached out to the mom and daughter through Instagram, asking to help. Grace, too, will hit the runway: "I'll come out at the end and take a bow," she said. Tickets are still available to the show, and everything beyond the cost of the event will benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.