Friday, April 24, 2015

Fashion Revolution Day 2015

Fashion Revolution 2015, Rana Plaza

"On 24 April 2013, 1133 people were killed and over 2500

collapsed in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
Social and environmental catastrophes
in our fashion supply chains continue.
Fashion Revolution says enough is enough."

Happy FASHION REVOLUTION Day, a day for people worldwide to come together and raise awareness about the fashion industry. What does this mean? Today is a day to reflect. Who sewed your clothes? Who harvested the cotton? Where do they live? What conditions do they work in? How does that company treat them? Who do you purchase your clothes from and how often do you purchase clothes? When you are finished with them, where do they go, to the landfill? What can you do as a consumer to change these habits and bring justice for the factory workers, and harvesters, for those who are not profiting, but are being exploited by the fashion industry?

Last year, this week, my BFF and I entered our university's EcoWeek recycled fashion show and won first place, which was so exciting. This same week we also entered the Fashion Revolution USA contest, and won first place! This year, I am on a different side of the world, not surrounded by fashion-interested people, but through social media, I am still doing my part to help raise awareness. I hope you can too! Use your voice among your friends or through social media and remind people that the clothes they wear have an origin, and over 50 people have worked to get your clothes to you. Everyone matters and deserves respect and the right to work in a safe environment... let's remember that together. We must learn from our past, no one should die at the hands of fashion. Making the right choices as a consumer is one way to go, pushing brands to increase their labor standards is another, if you still want to do more, check out Slavery Footprint and Fashion Revolution for more resources! ;)

Here are some hashtags you can use: 
#FASHREV #fashionrevolution #whomademyclothes #fairtrade #love #newyork #dtla #ethicallysourced #fairtradefashion #ethicalfashion #slowfashion #ecofashion #igfash #instafash #fashionista #style #stylish #model #models #losangeles 

 Inside Out for Rana Plaza:
Dangle Earrings || c/o Trades of Hope
Fair trade, made by a women's group in Cuzco, Peru (interview here!)
Blouse || Dip- Dye upcycled from Salvation Army
Second hand fashion is the most sustainable!
Raising funds and awareness for childhood heart disease research
Bangles || Relevee, c/o Hovey Lee, and gifted from friends
Relevee - Sustainably made by women survivors of human trafficking, women run, women directed
Hovey Lee - Made in the USA sustainable Eco-Jewelry
Ankle Crops || AG Jeans
Sustainably made in the USA
Low Cut kicks, Bajo Gato Blanco || c/o Mipacha
Sustainably and community made in Peru using local textiles (interview here!)

Join me and the revolution to raise awareness on Instagram & Facebook! :p

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

A Story of Fear, Strength, and Community

It was honestly a day that felt like a daydream...

My day began with assistant directing a short film on clean water with Agua Viva. We were filming at a wonderful, vibrant, yet very humble Indigenous community on the mountainside. This is the same community where I taught photography in December. After the film, our team was informed of a local tragedy that passed nearby over the past two nights; we were then asked if we could come investigate. Luckily our cameraman was an investigator for most of his life, and so our journey began.

The "20 minutes and a short walk" ended up being a 20 minute ride int he back of a truck followed by a 50 minute muddy hike up a mountainside. The slippery slopes were a challenge but being together made it a laugh-filled challenge! I crawled through tall grass, held tadpoles at different stages of development (which one of the kids pulled out of a pond), I rode a horse saddle-less with man in his Indigenous traditional poncho, I slid bottom first down the side of a steep muddy hill, I walked through a cloud, then was rained on by the same cloud... I felt like I was walking through Discovery Channel. It was marvelous.

However when we arrived, (in our wet, muddy, and stinky state) it was SUCH an interesting site to behold. I had very mixed feelings upon arrival. The first thing I saw was groups of men and women in their gorgeous traditional garments of bold colors sitting across the hills. There were over 100 people in total. This was beautiful. As we got closer, it was apparent that many of these faces were either waiting, confused, sad, or struggling to deal with the situation at hand. Amid this emotion, they all seemed to be there to support each other. As we kept walking, we began to see the remnants of the tragedy. On one side was a pile of sheep organs, an on another side were piles of sheep parts and skins. 

We found out that over the past two nights an animal had attacked and killed over 30 sheep. Some families lost all of the sheep that they had... and some of them only had sheep. Unfathomable. Because of this, some were crying, some were cleaning the remains to sell, and others were checking fresh tracks. After investigating, it was decided that it was a large blood-thirsty mountain-cat type animal(over 150lbs) that was killing for thrill, not survival. Over the next few days they scared it away. What passed was one of the saddest communal things I have witnessed in my life. The community and beauty of the people was one of the most inspiring things I have ever seen. What a story of fear, strength, and community. It really opened my eyes to the differences between this community and the community I live in back in the United States. Never forget the importance of community and your surroundings... in the good and the bad.

And also, Happy Earth Day!

Always Learning from Life and Taking Opportunities,

Join me in this journey on Instagram & Facebook!

Friday, April 10, 2015

Casa Del Arbol

I apologize for my lack of blog posts! I have been so busy this past month, that I sometimes forget to even breathe! *dramatic sigh*

Two weeks ago I left Peru for Ecuador, where I was volunteering as a photographer during a clean water filtration system instillation with Agua Viva International. Before I share the photos from that, I wanted to take today to share pictures from my Monday visit to the Casa Del Arbol, "tree house," in Baños in Tungurahua, Ecuador. Basically it is a swing on a cliffside as it's nickname "Swing at the Edge of the World" implies. Aside from that long-necked swing, my Monday was filled with climbing behind waterfalls, bungee jumping off a bridge twice, up-side-down canopying over a waterfall, and running across wooden drawn bridges. It was such a dream day... and dream week. I don't have much time to pour out my heart, but I do want to share this:

Just because you are older in age does not mean 
you have to let go of all the fun things that made up your childhood.

God bless,