Conscious Chic

Merriam-Webster online defines the noun Chic as:

Smart elegance and sophistication especially of dress or manner.

As I roll into my mid-fifties the goal is to be conscious not live life on auto-pilot.

ReadingĀ We Are All Fast-Food Workers Now has been a wake-up call.

This has awakened in me the urge to speak out as a Rebel/Feminist.

At this point in my life living on the cusp of getting older I think each person should decide for themselves how they want to be, live, act, dress, and think.

To be a Feminist in today’s world was beautifully expressed by Gaia Repossi, an Italian Creative Director living in Paris:

“Since I am a creative person, my style is my language, a way in which I speak.

I would encourage you to “speak” freely as yourself, to be guided by your instinct, to be faithful to your heart and mind, to say something…Contemporary elegance, to me, is rooted in an enlightened feminism, in equality of genders and sexualities, and in freedom from gender.”

To embrace and honor your individuality–of gender yet also of personality–and that of others is the goal.

My agenda in advancing the ethic of Conscious Chic is precisely to liberate ourselves from the old-school patriarchy that has caused the hazardous working conditions in garment factories around the globe.

Being chained to a treadmill of buying and spending isn’t the way to live the rest of your life after you turn 50.

I say: be Chic by being You.

Acting as a conscious consumer can be a great way to manage your mental and physical health at mid-life.

In coming blog entries I’ll talk about this in more detail via the concept of having a capsule wardrobe of 30 or so items.

My Mid-Life Clothing Revelation

As I get older, like any woman in her fifties, I’m examining my life: what to discard, what to keep as I move towards another birthday.

On the cusp of 54 your priorities could change. The things you value could change.

I’ve been reading a book that is a revelation.

The book We Are All Fast Food Workers Now: The Global Uprising Against Poverty Wages is an eye-opener.

Around the globe people labor at McJobs. The definition of a McJob is one that is soul-crushing and leads nowhere for those individuals trapped working there.

Thus my reference in the title of the last blog entry to McFashion. This is what I call the shoddy fast fashion that garment workers sew in unsafe working conditions in countries where the government is in cahoots with U.S. transnational corporations.

Echoes of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire here were repeated in the Rana Plaza collapse where over 1,000 garment workers were killed a few years ago.

I don’t know what’s worse: that the governments in other countries allow these deplorable conditions at the hands of American business. Or whether U.S. companies should shoulder the blame totally.

A pair of Zara pants I bought were poorly constructed and didn’t ever fit right. As a rule, I don’t shop in fast fashion stores or go shopping every week as a hobby.

In two books the authors stated that the average person buys 63 items of clothing every year. How can that be?

I’m no fan of the nationalist fervor in the U.S. We must think of people living in other countries. How U.S. companies are ravaging their lands, harming people’s health, and polluting the earth.

I will always be a purveyor of fashion as therapy. Yet it’s a privilege that so few women living in other countries have: the right to parade down their streets in finery, free of violence and sexual abuse, able to exert their power in the face of oppression.

Garment workers paid barely $77 per month make a pair of Nike shoes that cost $150 here.

I’d like to offer alternatives to help redress the perils of runaway fashion.

Is it possible to “have your cape, and wear it too?”

There’s a better way. I’ll talk in coming blog entries about books that offer solutions. Plus I’ll give my own strategies.

I call this ethic Conscious Chic.

I have ideas for how to manage your wardrobe to help improve your health.

I’m all for making your life easier when you’re a woman going through “the change.”