Archive for the 'sustainability' Category

Piece of My Mind / “Stuff”

May 13, 2009


I am in the midst of cleaning out not only my closet and giving it a complete rehaul, but my room as well. Humans have the unique ability to acquire LOTS. OF. JUNK. I am definitely no exception, but am making it a priority to live as simply and streamlined as possible.

This post from Think Simple Now was really enlightening. My parents are notorious pack-rats, and growing up in the environment that I did, I came to the realization early on that I didn’t want a lot of stuff. I saw the impact having lots of stuff had on them in physical, emotional and spiritual ways, and I knew that it was not the way I wanted to live.

Sometimes it is a bit of a struggle. I am in a highly materialistic industry, let alone society. Fashion is built on seasons, and on acquiring more stuff. I want to appear stylish and creative, professional yet artistic. It is a part of playing the role. It’s not as if I don’t have enough clothes, though. I just don’t have the right clothes. I like fashion. I appreciate art and beauty. And yet, having so much junk, I’ve realized, makes me appreciate the things I love less. I really don’t need that much stuff. In fact, I won’t even miss any of it.

Of course, some things I just can’t get rid of for their sentimental value. I keep all my childhood projects and work in a box, but other than that, I have been trying to be as ruthless as I can about my stuff. I promised myself that I would not start buying anything else until I have finished getting rid of what I don’t want now. I have my eye on some pieces that I actually need. This was a good opportunity to finally be able to see with clarity what I actually have and figure out what I actually need to be living my desired life.

In the article, Tina speaks about moving residences as the opportunity to take stock of what she had and let go of some of it. Perhaps this is what prompted me to try to clean out what I have acquired over the past almost-21 years of living in this house, as I am anticipating the way I want to live (independently, simply, and passionately) and preparing my life for that moment. I have had to let go of 4 garbage bags of clothing, which, I have to say, was mostly not mine in the first place.

I feel like these changes in my life are at the same time a reflection of me growing up as well as a stepping stone for me to grow up. This letting go of material things is paving the way for me to acquire more intellectual and creative awareness, something I believe makes sense for the world right now. I think that people are going to be streamlining their lives, as we move into an increasingly technology-driven world, where information and communication will take the place material goods have in filling that void in our lives.

This change will no doubt be reflected in my design philosophy as I go into fourth year in designing my grad collection. I know that I will focus on creating clothes that are beautiful, functional, and well designed so that they retain their worth season after season, year after year. I want my clothes to be treasured as well as worn. I want them to be high quality. As the economic downturn has taught us, bad times make people think more carefully about what they buy. I want people to think about what I design, and still buy it. I want them to love it the more they wear it. I want my pieces to have true value, to not be thought of as frivolous, but as a necessary and worthy indulgence that aids in their lives, not detract from their dreams, values, and lifestyles.


Earth Day Musings

April 23, 2009

We’ve all heard of the 100-mile diet. (I have this weird thing I do – basically for everything going on in the world, I like to find a connection to fashion, because well, usually they are staring at me right in the face.) We had mass globalization happen. And then we have the eco-movement, which has spawned all sorts of initiatives to make processes and activities more green, including the 100-mile diet (food), hybrid cars (transportation), eco-friendly homes and materials (shelter), and of course, the growing prominence of local designers as being trendy (fashion). Four of the necessities in life (maybe I should’ve used “clothing” instead of “fashion) are all experiencing change as a result of the eco-movement, but one thing I have been thinking about is creative services and whether they will be affected.

This is of particular interest to me as I figure out where I want to live and work, whether to stay in Vancouver or not, in a year when I graduate. Because of the increasingly connected nature of the world, people who require services can now get these services from anyone living anywhere. It is hardly a requirement to be located in the same vicinity, although I’m sure there are benefits (. This means that “talent” can manifest itself in companies everywhere, not necessarily in the fashion capitals of the world. And, “talent” does not necessarily have to go to these fashion capitals to be successful or to make a living. Does this mean a major shift in the fashion industry? In 20 years, will we still even have fashion capitals, or will it be a fashion free-for-all?  

This weights heavily on my career and life decisions, as I, like most people, seek the best opportunities for what I do. Then again, it is not just about job opportunity, but also travel and experience, being able to see how the fashion industry works in different cities. So maybe its not that hard a decision.

P.S. Hope you all had a good earth day!

Thieves Spring Summer 2009

January 15, 2009

I just recently discovered this line by Sonja den Elzen, Thieves. I love the design philosophy. These are great clothes, innovative while still wearable. Forward without being flashy. I think that the colour has a lot to do with this. My general rule is that to avoid excess flash, colour goes best with simple silhouettes and pared down detail, and interesting silhouettes and details look best with neutrals. That’s my personal design rule. I like interesting minimalism.

Another added bonus, on top of great looking clothes: they’re made from sustainable fabrics!

The website does bug me a little bit though. The text is very small and hard to read :|.

Thieves S/S 2009