A good garment is not hard to find


leah-42

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately.  And internet hunting.  And more thinking.  And I have happened upon a new passion/cause I am interested in.  It’s the segment of the fashion world that involves fair trade, sustainable and ethically conscious clothing.  We have spent a lot of time in this country (America) feeding ourselves the lie of consumerism.  It whispers I need more, more and more.  No, you do not, and you are weighing yourself down with so many possessions.  I’ve been learning more about socially conscious shoes, handmade goods and garments that have a more positive story than a factory with terrible working conditions in a developing country.  As someone who currently works in an HR role, I have come to understand a little bit more about the importance of worker’s rights and wages.  I am encouraged by the good in companies I have seen lately.  Therefore, I decided to compile a list of some of my findings and another blog that gives a list of ethical companies out there.  There are a chunk of them overseas, but American also has a hat in the ring as well.

Here are some companies I have found.  This is not a complete and full list by any means, but please check them out!

Clothing companies

Braintree Clothing

http://www.braintreeclothing.com/

One of my favorites in the clothing styles so far!

 

Fashion-able

https://livefashionable.com/

 

Red Earth Trading Company

https://redearthshop.com/

 

Barnabas Clothing

http://www.barnabasclothing.com/pages/join-team-barnabas

 

Good and Fair

http://www.goodandfairclothing.com/

 

Bibico

http://www.bibico.co.uk/

 

Everlane

https://www.everlane.com/

 

Shift On Nature

http://shifttonature.com.au/

 

Eileen Fisher

There are Eileen Fisher stores in Green Hills Mall in Nashville

http://www.eileenfisher.com/EileenFisher.jsp

 

Seamy- Denver-based awesome company

http://www.seamly.co/

 

PeopleTree

http://www.peopletree.co.uk/

 

First Rite:

http://firstriteclothing.com/webstore/

 

Apolis Global

http://www.apolisglobal.com/

 

Elizabeth Suzann

http://elizabethsuzann.com/collections/all-products

 

Zady

https://zady.com/women

 

Hackwith Design House

http://hackwithdesignhouse.com/all/

 

High end fashion/ more couture

Svilu

http://www.svilu.com/

 

Mina and Olya

http://www.papercutmag.com/articles/2014/04/19/behind-seams-mina-olya-find-sucess-sustainability

 

Amour Vert

http://www.amourvert.com/

 

Shoes

Nisolo- Peruvian made leather shoes based in Nashville

http://nisolo.com/

 

The root collective

http://www.therootcollective.com/

 

Accessories and scarves

A peace treay

http://apeacetreaty.com/

 

Matter Prints

http://matterprints.com/

 

Mitscoots- socks, etc.

http://mitscoots.com/collections/womens-casual-socks

 

Krochet Kids

https://www.krochetkids.org/products/womens/womens-bags/

 

No 41 (a non-profit close to my heart, since I am friends with their founder)

http://www.no41.org/

 

Freedom of Animals- bags, etc

http://freedomofanimals.com/

 

Sunglasses

http://wearpanda.com/collections/all

 

For more clothing companies,check out this blog list:

http://www.thegoodtrade.com/features/fair-trade-clothing

 

Feel free to share any more in the comment section, and let me know what you find in your own research! Happy ethical shopping 🙂

~lme

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Slowing your roll and minimizing your social media presence


earl

An important facet of slow living is learning to properly cull. Taking a breather from all that we have can be helpful.  Take some time to be calm and ponder over some tea or coffee.  Think of it like a reset button. I myself have realized oftentimes that, like a drug addict needing a fix, I begin to live on the distractions, getting hyped by liking, sharing, and commenting on all that others say and think.  Sometimes we need an intervention- put the phone or the laptop down and walk away.  And I’ve realized that the reason I do that is because it’s somehow filling a void. When we feel like we are lacking in social engagements, friendships or just feeling lonely, there’s the phone- our modern-day pacifier to calm us down. We are scrolling addicts. I’m not saying it’s wrong that we seek a connection and have this need, but the way we are filling it may be displaced. Seeking relationship with people because I like that in a digital world doesn’t necessarily give me human connection.  It’s only a partial-version of a true connection with another person, even if it’s just to talk and listen. Our time is being sucked into a vortex until two hours later, I’m past my bedtime, not able to quiet my mind and not getting restful sleep yet again. I think we need to learn to say no, realize that we are becoming addicts and where we are lacking in our lives.  Here are some thoughts behind slowing your roll on social media a little.

  1. We weren’t meant to process all of the information fed to us in our newsfeed.  I’m not sure we were meant to know that everyone who knows everyone that we know is having a baby, getting married and going to the Dominican Republic. It’s so much to process, and sometimes our brains might explode from having to consider everything that really does not have any bearing on our lives. Can it help us make informed decisions, pray for others and know a little more about the world around us? Yes. Is that always information that we actually take and act on? Not often- at least for myself.
  2. Viewing only a facet of others’ lives can lead to comparison and discontent on our part.  Negative thoughts, when fed, can in turn eat us to death- wow she looks great, and her husband is the best ever, her kids look perfect and nothing in her life has ever gone wrong I bet. This is part of the warped perception of believing everything we see online. We fail to realize that these people we argue with or judge or idolize are people just like us with daily frustrations just like us. Their lives are imperfect, they are flawed and they really don’t live a hip life 24/7.  Ask them how much prep time went into hair maintenance, clothing maintenance and making their face look as good as it does?  Possibly a decent amount of time that personally I’d prefer to spend elsewhere.
  3. We tend to waste a lot of time on things that don’t improve the quality of our lives. Distraction seems to be the norm in today’s culture, and by the end of the day we are mentally exhausted. If we spent the time we were scrolling online to actually sit and think about ways to improve our lives, taking care of our bodies or others, or minimizing unnecessary cares, we might be better off. Does it help me to be able to be “up” on the latest news of everyone’s life? Not really- when we meet in person- we don’t have much to say. And when people do talk to us- they reference all of the past posts we’ve had on facebook. We are basically all just living in the past or the future instead of the actual present.
  4. We are missing out on real living. While we’re looking down at our phones, seeing the fabulous lives others are living, we are missing tons of opportunities to be soaking up an amazing world around us. We are believing a culture that says if you aren’t on every single platform, you’ll be left behind (being a musician is a prime industry for that). You are being lied to. Put the phone down (preaching to myself here) and for one day don’t connect with a screen but with the world around you and try to be present. Try just living and being. There is so much that you are missing out on if you would only open your eyes.

Feel free to let me know what you think about all this processing of information in the Digital age.

~lme

The value of waiting, slowing down and finding simplicity


chair_black
Sit right here and wait. What? No thank you. Remember when used to actually wait for our parents outside school? We couldn’t text them. We just hoped that eventually they would show up to claim us and take us home.

We just hate waiting. You know it’s true. From drivers who nearly run you down just to get to the same stoplight to the bosses who needed it done yesterday or I want my coffee NOW. We despise waiting. Maybe it somehow reminds us of our humanity and the honest truth that we don’t get everything we want when we want it. Sob sob. I realize how easy it has been to fall into the trap of not wanting to wait. Why is my career not further NOW? Why do I not have the man of my dreams sitting by my side NOW? Where is my lunch NOW? The ironic part of all of this is that we have actually traded our anxious ways and don’t really know what it’s like to live NOW. Being present is something we all struggle with. We love to go and do and live life. But it’s time we all slowed down just a little bit (or rather a lot) to be able to process our lives. Processing what is happening and the actual process behind everything is something we’d rather pass over, forget and live without. When we’ve gone an entire week without assessing what we did well, what we could have done better and perhaps some mistakes we made along the way, we have become to busy. When we are too busy to stop for a conversation that needs to occur with someone or to express thankfulness to someone, we’ve become too busy. Our “busy-ness” will eventually be the death of us all, since running ourselves into the ground will exhaust us both physically and emotionally.

I’ve become very interested in the Slow Movement which believes in more of a mindful way of living- a connection to food, a connection to place, a connection to people and a connection to life. It involves slowing down and really being present in the moment. I prefer to start living more slowly and mindfully as opposed to being forced like a current through the gates of a dam. In the Entrepreneur Issue of Kinfolk, there is an interview with Carl Honore´, one of the world’s most respected advocates of the Slow Movement.  You can watch his Ted Talk here.

I decided to include some blogs regarding the concepts of simple living and a slow living mindset, so check them out:

http://www.becomingminimalist.com/becoming-minimalist-start-here/

Home:

http://www.slowyourhome.com/

Family:

http://lifeshouldbethecatsmeow.blogspot.com/

Other thoughts:

http://prettygoodstories.com/

http://valueofsimple.com/start-here/

Let’s take time to be mindful, be present and not be afraid to live a little slower paced as we journey along our path in life.

~lme