Everything is everything

Contained within everything is it all. Take your cotton shirt. It's fibers are grown in the earth, picked by machines and assembled into thread and fabric and a shirt by humans from around the world. throughout it's birthing process into your shirt it travels on trucks across highways and in ships on the sea.  and then you get it. And it carries in it's very essence it all. Isn't it time to honor that. Respect what we have. Adorn it all?

Why the [Ethical] Sweatshop

In life, such as it is, there is a countless intelligence and money invested in stopping us from thinking. So even though we see things in our world that feel off - even when we want to take action and make a change there is a lot that comes down on us when we try to make a move. There is a lot that needs the rich to stay rich, the poor to stay poor, the oppressed to stay oppressed, and the dark inner abyss and darkness that we all face at different times in different ways to go mostly untreated instead of respected, handled and loved.  If we are kept vulnerable to our own impulses then our impulses can be commodified. 

What does this mean? Let's take shopping. When you find yourself shop in order to:

1) make yourself feel better

2) fit in - get the stuff other people have so you can blend in

3) forget about something

4) because you feel "bored" or have nothing "better" to do

You are filling something inside by reaching for something outside of yourself. This also happens with drinking, drugs, sex, food, even love itself can be something we reach for to not sit still in ourself. But when it comes to shopping there are TONS of businesses - almost all business - ready to take your vulnerable state and answer it with some something. 

So much marketing is directed toward getting us not to think and just buy. "look good" "fit in" "feel good" and not what we need --  change, wake up, stick with it.

The challenge is hard with food and stuff. We need to eat and we need to wear something so it can get really slippery when you start to indulge in those things as ways to escape. And it's not your fault!

When we walk into a store, for example, someone figured out the the smell of our first love, the time we were denied a gift from our mother, the desire for more all making us victims of our own humanity. Of course we shop all the time! We are human and effected by each other and some humans figure out how to effect each other.

So let's practice consuming from a place of positive and calm and joy and the good and not from the place of need and emptiness and terror. 

Practicing makes better. Welcome to the Pop Up [Ethical] Sweatshop. The practice ground for connecting with your ethical style. 

At the Pop Up [Ethical] Sweatshop - the real sweatshop is within the  world of the consumer. with a range of choices that represent ethics that speak to different parts of the self - the pop-up becomes a training ground for moving through choices in the world from our hearts. It's a place to exercise caring and a system by which we can get more honest to see who we are in the world and let it shift into being the world we want.

The Mindful Consumption Meditation: Look at stuff and see that in each thing we carry we carry all that has gone into it.  Explore the metaphor of our interconnectedness as the concrete reality it is - the way we treat the parts of our world. How much we know. What we wear.  What we have. What we want from this world and life. 

really good article


Thanks Isabella Scott for sending this. Brings up a lot of issues that we have been thinking about -- what is entitlement, privilege and how can we begin to have an honest conversation about change within and outside the framework for existence such as it is. 

On Transparency

So lately there is this thing - transparency. You hear it a lot in the eco-warrior clothing world but also in a lot of things. It's a really wonderful idea. Let's know more. Stop hiding. It's usually because something feels a little wrong that the hiding starts in the first place. It's always been true in my own life. There are things I am either trying to get away with or I just don't want to deal with - or I think it's best if someone doesn't know might just make it easier. So practicing transparency and asking and living with transparency is a really good overall life practice.  If we can start talking about things that might seem uncomfortable, and really sensing into them we can also start to sense into the right way to fix them and confront them - not trying to fix them by covering them over more deeply. It's hard to hold the entire truth. Like do we really want to know that a shirt costs $5 to make and costs $20 in the store? Not really - Just tell me how much it is. Do I really want to know the conditions that something is made in or do I only kind of want to know? Or not at all? How much are we able to know and how do we deal with that information and truth? That's kind of the thing. Transparency for it's own sake is sort of empty. Now that we know what will we do? I will bring examples. soon. or call me out on it. I struggle with content. 

this blog

why is it so hard for me to check in, share, express in this format on a consistent or in a meaningful way? i feel my resistance and i can track it with the absence of posts as so much has been happening. It is not that I am unable to express things. In conversation I can articulate positions with a force that almost overwhelms my listeners. Yet here, in this outlet designed for it I resist. There is something about the written word that challenges my notion of process. The fixed and the fluid. Something said knowing what is will change. And so - the blog will evolve in that direction. It will be a blog about processes. Both mine, but also those I find in fashion, music, business, expression. What are the ways things are getting done. How are those methods making things easier, better, lighter?

 More coming. Really. In this sharing is my own ability to stick with it. i hope. i think. i am. 

The Copenhagen Fashion Summit (part 1)

So here is the good that happened;

the future. 

Industrialization brings in access to health and clean and new. One dress become three and disease gets rinsed out and dried. Shoes now match each foot and the act of walking includes comfort. Machines absorb pain that once belonged to fingers. Press and printing, the word of god is in the hands of those that want to hold it. in this future we have the tools and time to make thoughts for ourselves. in this future we are participating- poor, no longer a life sentence. 


This future fabric, constructed with metals once hidden beneath the surface, and fertilized by a concept that drives it to grow. Capitalism climbs on technology's back and rides past the heart and mind that imagined imagining it - creating and destroying with equal elegance until we can hardly recognize the place from which it came. 

And so we find ourselves here. In the evaporating reality of today. A little lost. A little scared.  Missing natural reference points that we thought we assumed would stand forever. Nature is shrinking. 

And so we find ourselves wrapped in fabrics that are so far from the ground out of which they came that we can't trace the cycle into which they fit - even if we want to. The disintermediation is so great no one in the chain can know it all.  Who are the people in our neighborhood?

we, finally, after all this time miss one another. we, after all this future, miss the world. 

Last week I was at a gathering of people who came together because they wanted to find each other. Because we want to know where we come from. Where our fabrics come from. Who touches them. We want to live in the cycle of giving and life where resources are both the people that make things and the ground that gives.  We got together because we missed the humanity that is the reason for our lives.  

And there, in Copenhagen, we saw one another and our desire to remember. And I was there too, amongst those dedicated to be alive again in a living world with living people that we can face in all that we do. 

Thank you Eva Kruse and the Danish Fashion Institute for creating a space where we can sit and meet and imagine again.