For the Love of Travel

How do you solve a problem like Maria?

How do you catch a cloud and pin it down?

—The Sound of Music

When I’m asked what I want to do with my life after graduate school, I can only come up with one response of certainty: “I want to travel. I want to live internationally.” I’ve always wanted travel in my life; it’s something that isn’t a completely foreign concept to me. Foreign countries may sound intimidating, but in reality, the thought of living somewhere else isn’t a strange idea to me. Some people, however, don’t share the same enthusiasm for my idea. Shouldn’t I want a job or career first? Shouldn’t I be looking for a companion, someone to share in my love of travel? Of course, I do want a career and eventually a partner, but I have different priorities. Continue Reading ›

January 2017 Affirmations

If there’s one thing that can be tough about sustainability, it’s constantly making sure you’re committing, which is especially tough when you have a job that requires you to be on the move. In the past, I’ve set goals for myself to maintain sustainability although I moved every few months or so to a new location and job. Even though most of my moving was from Denver to nearby towns, after several years I began moving temporarily to San Diego and then internationally followed by a few months in Chicago. While I was in Chicago, I noticed it could be difficult at times to maintain my sustainable practices. On some occasions I found myself holding a plastic bag instead of a cloth one or using Ziploc bags instead of looking for replacements. In order to remedy the situation, I set a few goals for myself, which have gone fairly well. I continue to use cloth bags, I have a reusable lunch tote and I love to shop at local markets and boutiques. I was also gifted reusable bags to replace Ziploc bags and I always strive to carry a refillable water bottle with me. While all of these updates are great news, I still sometimes find myself feeling overwhelmed. Continue Reading ›

Lessons From My Ethical Fashion Career

It’s hard to believe that graduate school is beginning in the next few days as I wind down my summer assistantships.  Last year around this time, I was frantically searching for a temporary apartment in Chicago for an internship with a fair trade fashion company in sales and marketing.  I had always wanted to live in Chicago and although I didn’t stay longer, my involvement with the company made me realize that I still support the industry even if I’m not directly working in the field.  Finding my way back to the arts, I didn’t see my involvement in ethical fashion as a complete bust, as I used my knowledge of retail and marketing in my summer assistantships with the Utah Shakespeare Festival and the Southern Utah Museum of Art.  As it turns out, my assistance with pop-up shops and trade shows, counting inventory and writing company blog posts prepared me for more than I thought.  While my support for ethical fashion may solely be on this blog as I focus on graduate school, there are some valuable lessons from the industry that have equipped me this past summer. Continue Reading ›

The Story of My Organic Cotton Tote

When I asked for a Raven + Lily tote for Christmas, I couldn’t have been more excited to receive it as a gift.  I always enjoy having large bags to carry with me, and not for just hauling groceries.  When I lived in Denver, I used to have multiple bags to carry everything I needed for my jobs and was always thrilled when it could fit my lunch as well.  In Chicago, a reusable grocery bag was always necessary to carry coats, jackets and umbrella for the just in case moments walking from the bus stop to work.  That’s why I was excited to see this one from Raven + Lily that is colorful, playful and was durable as well.  Just how much do I admire this tote?  I didn’t think it was possible, but after learning more about it like I have with other accessories, I appreciate it even more. Continue Reading ›

The Story of My Peruvian Scarf

Stumbling upon Centro de Textiles Tradicionales del Cusco in Peru after a visit to a local market only seems like yesterday, not the two years that have passed.  I still recall carefully inspecting the bright textiles and beautiful patterns that seemed to be in every direction that I looked.  I had heard of the organization before I visited their store, but hadn’t expected to visit in person any day soon.  Luckily I was wrong and I explored every inch of the small museum and available products.  I had been looking for something to bring home from Peru that would reflect the culture, but nothing had caught my eye and I yearned to find something I knew would be authentic, not another tourist trap or from a store claiming to be fair trade.  After deciding on a scarf of purple and deep reds, I felt proud of my choice, but upon returning home I didn’t seek the opportunity to wear it much.  It can be easy to tuck our travel souvenirs away in favor of clothes we wear all the time, but recently I’m determined to wear this accessory.  Why?  To share the beautiful craftsmanship and history of this scarf.  After all, this was the reason I was careful in selecting it; I wanted to share a piece of Peruvian life. Continue Reading ›