Posted on March 7, 2014
I was fully prepared to share some fashion inspiration as we’re in the middle of fashion week and I’m working really hard to start “editing” my wardrobe. But last night, as I stood backstage of Fashion Week, I was bombarded with a single thought so big, it needs to be addressed.
“I’m not ______ enough”
I heard it from the models, I heard it from the hairdressers talking to the models…I heard it from myself–I am not model sized. My hair gets big and crazy. I don’t really know what my signature style is, or I haven’t been able to purchase the things that are my signature style. I can’t wear certain shoes because of my feet and my knees. I am not successful enough, creative enough, brave enough, disciplined enough….and then I’m down in such a dangerous spiral that blank doesn’t even matter and I’ve turned it in to one general, and incredibly untrue message: I am not enough.
NO ONE is immune from this thought. All genders, ages, body types, financial statuses, professions–humans–think like this and think like this on a daily basis. WHY? Why are we not asking daily for a revolution where we are reminding everyone that they are enough. Simply by being a living, breathing person they are enough.
Enter Lupita Nyong’o, the Cinderella of the Oscars. Yes, her acceptance speech for best supporting actress was incredible (“No matter where you’re from, your dreams are relevant”?! That’s gold), but her speech on beauty is taking the internet by storm, and I may be jumping on a bandwagon by sharing it, but I’m going to anyways.
Her desire for lighter skin could be replaced with “thinner body” or “more money” or anything else in the world, but we all have that one thing that one thing that we hope and pray will just be fixed. That we’ll wake up and that one thing keeping us from being happy/successful/beautiful/loved will be gone and we will find ourselves happy/successful/beautiful/loved. Yes there are things we can fix. I’m on a journey of health and figuring out stuff on surface levels, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But those can not be viewed as journeys where the end result is that I will become “enough” once I have accomplished them, because that has already happened. I am enough.
Tonight, I will go in to the sea of beautiful models and successful artists/business owners armed with that fact: I am enough. I am in this world, I am living, I am doing the best I can, I love, I create…I have air in my lungs and a heart that beats. Those last two facts alone make me enough. And they make you enough–whether you’re walking down a runway in Northwest Arkansas Fashion Week, or Paris Fashion Week, or sitting at a desk, or holding a baby, or sitting in a doctors office, or sitting in a place where you have no idea how you got there.
You’ve got someone fighting for you, and fighting for your courage to find your inner strength to declare this fact about yourself. That’s why I created our Dancing Girl, Lotus.
You. Are. Enough.
Let me remind you…You. Are. Enough. You always have been, you always will be, and if you need someone to tell you that every day, let me be that person.
Posted on March 5, 2014
For any of you who know me in real life, you know that I care a lot about doing things for a cause. I’ve struggled with how to manifest/show that without it being more about me and what I’m doing than the cause I’m doing it for, but that’s a different conversation. Anyways. Back to causes–I think the fashion industry gets a bad rap for being all about material goods and about throwing lots of money away for said goods when it could go somewhere else. Sure, there are people that confirm those assumptions, but that is not the case with the people of Northwest Arkansas Fashion Week. In the past, the local boutique owners and designers were throwing shows here and there to raise money for specific non-profits, and eventually Jade Terminella of Lola Boutique gathered her team and fellow fashion colleagues and combined them into one huge show. That was three years ago, and the response has been nothing short of amazing. Each year the show (and the audience) grows, all in the name of supporting local businesses, artists, and non-profits in an entertaining and beautiful way. Which you know is everything that Truebadours is all about.
This is our first (and hopefully the first of many) years with NWA Fashion week, and we were lucky enough to be able to jump all in. We’ll be filming back stage footage Thursday-Saturday, and after the shows we’ll release the openers we did for some fashion segments, but we wanted to show you the amazing non-profits we got to meet through this opportunity. I am amazed that NWA is full of SO many people caring for this community and the world. We loved hearing their stories and now we get to let you hear them as well.
My only regret with these videos are that we had such a limited amount of time to spend with each organization to film and capture their story, but we would love to expand these beyond what we created for Fashion Week. A one minute video isn’t much time, but we worked hard to capture the essence of these incredible people, and we hope you get the slightest taste of what they’re all about. So, listen to what this little spot in the middle of the U.S. is up to, visit their websites and learn more. Share their stories and stories like them. And, if you’re in the area, buy one of the few tickets left for the shows this weekend.
So, without further ado, I present to you the non-profits benefitting from NWA Fashion Week:
The Miller McNeil Woodruff Foundation is working to raise awareness, fund research, and offer support to families who are faced with the challenge of Spinal Muscular Atrophy.
Art Amiss Inc. is a not-for-profit art collective based in Fayetteville, AR created with the express purpose of providing services for artists living in, working in, or from Arkansas.
Teen Actions & Support Center is working to encourage youth ages 13-19 to realize their full potential by providing free support services that promote the development of responsible and productive members of the community.
Northwest Arkansas Children’s Shelter is providing a safe haven, high quality care and hope for the future to children who have been abandoned, abused or neglected.
Restore Humanity is taking the opportunity to help whenever, wherever, and however we can–not dictating the terms of our assistance, but responding to the needs of the individuals and communities we are serving.
Ozark Guidance is the premiere mental health provider for children, adults, and families in Northwest Arkansas since 1970.
Spay Arkansas is working to reduce and eliminate euthanasia of animals and over-crowding of shelters by hosting low cost spay/neuter clinics each week, serving qualifying low-income clients.
The Junior League of Northwest Arkansas is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers.
In a world where there is a lot of selfishness and a lot of heavy, heavy things, let’s always remember that there are people working so hard to shine some light and point our eyes beyond ourselves. Let’s celebrate those working hard to ensure that good remains in the world.
Do you have a story you want us to tell? Contact us and lets get started on creating a great video.
Posted on March 2, 2014
Health has been on my mind a lot lately. The importance of physical health and spiritual and mental health, and how we often will just choose one. I’ve also been thinking about how every decision you make effects at least one area of your health and well-being, whether it’s what you eat, how you prioritize your time, or what types of relationships you’re in. All of it makes a difference in how you feel, which then makes a difference in how you feel about yourself, which then goes on to effect how you interact with the world.
I’ve also realized this: health of any and all kinds is a fight. You fight to make the right decisions, you fight for time to do what fuels your soul, you fight the naysayers and the doubters and the people who judge you for not being at their level of health. It’s a lifestyle and a fight that I’m still trying to figure out how to maneuver through, but little by little things are coming to light of what I need to be doing.
So, this list is of things that not only make me feel healthy physically, but mentally and spiritually as well. This is also a list of promises to myself. This is my promise of ways I will take care of myself and work towards a healthier me.
Let’s fight for this. Let’s fight for a healthy and long life, full of joy and peace and moments that fill you to the brim with fulfillment and then spill right out of you in a flood of self confidence and true satisfaction in the life you’re living and those you’re living it with.
I’m fighting for it, and I’m fighting for it right beside you. What are you fighting for and how are you fighting for it?
Posted on February 26, 2014
Posted on February 21, 2014
See that pretty grey color? That’s my office wall now. We don’t have any before photos because it might have broken our cameras, but just imagine this with me: bright red, add magenta…and high gloss. I hated working in there. It was a terrible color, crowded with a bunch of stuff we don’t know where to put, but don’t want to get rid of…it felt like a punishment to be back there, and since I don’t edit on a laptop, that’s where I was forced to be. So, we decided to go ahead, unplugged the computer and got it painted.
We chose Benjamin Moore‘s Revere Pewter because that’s what we’ve painted our whole house (with the exception of the kitchen/dining because that’s a whole other animal). James will go more in to this paint as he talks through our home journey at some point, so I will just say what I know: this color is perfect. The perfect shade AND the perfect neutral. And extremely versatile for whatever style you want to go with. (NOTE: We are not sponsored by, or paid in any way by Benajmin Moore. James is just really picky about paint quality and I’m super picky about color, so we were just excited to find something that makes everyone happy and wanted to share it with you)
With most of our house, we have an agreement that James will work on big picture stuff like wall color, building things, etc. and I will come in and style it, so now my dreaming has begun! Here’s what I’m looking for:
I LOVE simple colors, with pops of natural wood and then brighter colors. The grey is a good starting point, and I have a fantastic wooden desk that James built for me. Between this room in the back of our house and our sunroom which will serve as a secondary space, I’m looking for furniture that is good for work and for a client visit. I love that the A Beautiful Mess office has a big desk for co-working and collaboration (I also LOVE the storage space in the desk). And then the picture on the right? So perfect for a peaceful and simple sitting area with an artistic flare. I like to keep to black, whites, and greys, and then bring color in with some accessories and maybe some green plants if I can keep them alive.
After being trapped in an ugly, shiny, red/pink dungeon, I have learned the importance of an inspiring workspace, especially if it’s in your house. At work, you make due with what you have, but if you have the option, surround yourself with art that inspires you–whether it’s for a certain project or just in general–quotes that keep you going are also a great idea. And, though it may be bordering over-used, a chalkboard wall is genius for taking big notes, planning, or just a fun escape from your desk to draw on it every once in a while.
Photo 1//2 (Pinterest: source unknown)
I am also learning that you HAVE to stay organized if you’re going to run a business without running in to snags. I’m really drawn to the idea of making the organization system look good too. Maybe if it looks pretty I’ll do it more? Between receipts, contracts, questionnaires and everything, our desk easily becomes littered with paper so I’m definitely on the hunt for an attractive but simple way to stay on top of the mess.
So, as I begin working on this space and the sunroom/client space, I’ll keep you updated! And maybe if we all beg a little, James will talk about his project in our living room because it’s awesome.
Now that we’ve talked about workspace, how about a few good reads to keep you going as you’re building dreams and making plans in whatever office you have:
To Inspire Your Work:
A Love Letter to the Dreamers from Justin and Mary Marantz
“Inspire the world with your beauty and the rest will follow.” Photographer Jose Vila talks about doing your own thing and sticking to it.
Failure is inevitable, and it feels much harder when you’re running your own business, but failing gracefully is what will set you apart.