Thursday, January 13, 2011

Jewelry Peace and a Chance to help African Elephants!

SO these are the new earrings I posted in my shop, aren't they beautiful?
I'm quite proud of them!
ALL proceeds from the elephant earrings will be donated to preserving African wildlife and keeping these beautiful beasts on our planet!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Lover's Day: V-Day Shop Prep

So I'm planning out new Valentine's Day items to put up in my shop, I've got four weeks to make the most of it. While I'm tempted to focus on lingerie, I'm being creative and scoping out the scene. I do, of course, keep in mind that the majority of Etsy participants are female....I feel some jewelry, lovers pillows and heels coming! (And lingerie!)
Hmm...I'm going to spend some time going through old fashion mags, great idea generator!
Check back often, and of course hit up the store:
Tweet me! @influencewear

A dyeing Failure

So...apparently nylon (and mixes thereof) doesn't take fabric dye. Hmm, thanks for letting know AFTER I dyed my hand black. Ok, it was grey, but it was still pretty gnarly looking afterward, haha. I was disappointed- I had big plans for this material. I even picked up a plastic dropcloth to protect my bathtub during the process, soaked the shit for an hour and a half...ack. Maybe fabric paint? I'm determined to use this stuff somehow; my landlord left a whole bunch of lacy-like material in my closet when I moved in.
Two days later, my hand is almost back to normal skin tone :P

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A New Year

Happy 2011! How's everyone's new year going so far? I don't know about you ut I am sooo glad the holiday crazies are over, amen!
I have revamped my Etsy shop, I made a new banner that you MUST go check out! I used good ole Paint program- has that program always been so damn complicated?
I've been nursing the jewelry bug a bit, so check out the new pieces I've posted. I think I've gotten a bit better at picture taking, once I started paying attention to other shop owners pics. The close-up shot is usually a winner.
I really want to learn how to screen print, it would be really cool to get some designs up on t-shirts and tanks. Think of the eco-friendly propaganda I could spread! It would be total green mayhem! *mwuahahaha* If any readers out there have information about this particular artistic venture, I would appreciate feedback :)
My current business twitter can be found @wrtrcat10 check it out! I'm going to be making a business only one soon, so look for a link. (@wrtrcat10 was originally for both the business and my professional writing.)
Hope your new year is going fantastic and make sure you check back soon!
C, Owner of Influence Clothing

Monday, December 13, 2010

Oh Lovely Holiday Season

I promised you an update, so I am delivering.
I moved to my new place mid-Oct, got all settled in…and lost my motivation. I wallowed for a while and then one miraculous Sunday, the veil lifted. And there stood my promiscuous muse, with that forever-present smirk on her face. We embraced, I forgave her, and I jumped back on the sewing machine.
I’m working on two things: this bluish grey wrap
I had originally wanted it to be floor length, but then I cut too far up the back. DOH. But that’s the only screw-up I’ve had so not bad. I think I’m going to add white netting sleeves and maybe a netting hood. It’s a work in progress.
And I just finished this
created out of a piece from another skirt and a handkerchief, which I cut into strips and layered. I like this piece—it’s playful and didn’t take too long to make.
I’ve been working on coming up with a business model and thinking about exactly what I want to do with Influence. I want to keep it eco-friendly, of course, but I also want to give back as much as possible (‘social entrepreneurialism’ -great term, isn’t it?). I had decided about a portion of profits going back out to a good cause right from the get-go, I just have to figure out to which good cause and how much. Details. I gotta tell you, I’m inclined towards animal/environmental ones, but there are also many needy people out there, for many different reasons.
In my Etsy shop I have four pieces of jewelry for sale and I have been busting my ass to get clothing in there.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The time approaches...

As my move into my new digs/studio approaches, I'm putting myself back into business mogul mindset. (Someday, right?) I want to hit the ground running with Influence once I'm able to launch ship (I can't wait! Im like a little kid waiting for Christmas!)
Speaking of the aforesaid holiday, I'm going to be stocking my shop with a few holiday themed items. I'm thinking a couple of cute skirts and a bunch of jewelry. It's going to be a busy season!
It's been a crazy year, folks. A bit of normalcy should be returning soon. I . Cannot. Wait. For realz.
Check back soon and meanwhile, browse my shop!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Earth Prefers You Naked: how the textile industry ravages the environment

You’ve probably noticed that people are a bit more environmentally aware these days and there are many more eco-friendly choices out there to make, from energy saving appliances to organic food. One growing part of eco-commerce is in the clothing department. Eco-fashion, or fashionable clothing that is produced without the use of chemicals, pesticides or unfair labor and with sustainable fabric and responsible practices, is growing rapidly in popularity.

This article is not going to focus on the other problems plaguing the textile industries, such as sweatshops, unfair labor practices, horrible working conditions, and irresponsible uses of resources such as water and power. Instead, it will focus on the environmental impact of textile manufacturing.

Much of today’s clothing is not eco-friendly; rather most clothing is made out of synthetic fibers and petrochemical derivatives. Petrochemicals are pollutants that cause global warming and their chemical makeup isn’t too far off from the nerve gases used in WWII. The manufacture of synthetic fibers is a very involved process, one that releases many noxious gases, acids and organic compounds. Clothing that has a special feature, such as ‘crease resistant’ contain chemicals like formaldehyde.

The EPA considers many textile manufacturing facilities toxic waste generators. To give you a little bit of an idea just how toxic the by-product of these plants are, the manufacture of nylon releases nitrous oxide, which is 310 times stronger of a gas than carbon dioxide. Also, nylon is not biodegradable.
A hundred percent cotton clothing may seem more eco-friendly, but it is most definitely not. Twenty-five percent of total annual worldwide pesticide use is due to the cotton grown to make clothing. Pesticides are a danger to not only the farmer that has to work with the chemicals, but the consumer who wears the clothing.

Your favorite pair of jeans is one of the 450 million that are sold every year in the U.S., jeans made from pesticide-soaked cotton plants, which are then sandblasted, chemically softened and doused with toxic dyes. (And by the way, fifteen hundred gallons of water are needed to produce the 1.5 pounds of cotton needed to make a single pair of jeans.)

Wool is also treated with chemicals, which is done by way of “sheep dips”. The sheep are dipped in troughs of chemicals before their wool is sheared to “prepare” the wool. I bet that feels good on their skin. This not only adversely affects the sheep, but the farmer and the surrounding aquatic systems that the chemicals end up leaching into.

The power looms that are used to mass produce clothing leaves a much-larger carbon footprint than their earth-friendly ancestor, the handloom. (Not to mention the stealing of an age-old craft from the artisans it employs, but we’re not going to go there). One job on a power loom sucks as much energy as running twenty vacuums all day long.

Eco-fashion is a trend that needs to become a mainstay of world culture. The average American throws out 68 lbs of clothing a year, while many people around the globe don’t even have shoes on their feet. Stop the destructive and hazardous cycle and shop with a more eco-conscious mind!

Jose G. How Green are your Jeans? 2008. OnEarth Magazine
Claudio L. 2007. Waste Couture: Environmental Impact of the Clothing Industry.
“Eco-fashion” Retrieved September 26, 2010.