Conscious Consumerism : when in doubt, shop small

Today’s discussion is informed by one of our favorite yogis, Purvi Lippincott! Purvi and Mary Godley met and became fast friends, bonding over fashion and vintage clothes, and eventually co-founded Freya! Freya was named for a Norse goddess of everything (™) to fill a gap in Indianapolis to help connect the dots for consumers regarding local, sustainably sourced goods. https://www.facebook.com/shopfreyya/

 

Yoga and Conscious Consumption

The mindfulness yoga practitioners work towards on the mat extends far beyond those four corners, into as much of our lives as possible.  Considering the impacts of her choices on others and the environment is very important to Purvi, especially when it comes to her clothes. Purvi brings mindfulness to how she dresses herself, in terms of how she dresses herself and shows up for the world and what the impact is in the background as well. 

Choosing Slow Fashion

The clothing industry has been very fast fashion for the last few decades. We have all fallen victim to the cute trendy items that come out each year only to need replacing the next.  Fast fashion is everywhere and considered the norm at this point for clothing purchases. This is devastating to our planet and completely unsustainable. There are many alternative, natural fibers being used again in clothing, as well as a return of some brands to classic cuts and colors that are durable and sustainable. It is possible to buy items that you look forward to wearing and that last for many years- like that one trusty winter jacket that has kept you warm for years, except it’s a t-shirt or sweater or whatever! Your clothing can last if you invest in quality items and take care of your clothes as well.  

What does taking care of your clothes look like? Maybe having your clothing tailored or mended, or having your stained clothing dyed.

Purvi shared a lovely story about her interaction with a sustainable denim company and how they worked with her to make sure she can stick to her sustainable clothing goals through her pregnancy. Supporting small businesses translates to moments like this because when you choose small business you choose the passionate, dedicated care of a maker. And we just love that! Look for ways to support your friendly neighborhood makers!

Privilege and Conscious Consumption

A common complaint about conscious consumption is that it’s not accessible, convenient, or affordable. But our consumption drives industries – consumer choice is very powerful. When you choose to support small businesses by shopping at a farmer’s market, your effort makes that choice more accessible for others. Consider whether something is possible for you rather than whether it’s easy – aligning our choices with our values is difficult but rewarding. 

Conscious Gifting this Holiday Season

Some tips from Purvi on honoring your commitment to conscious consumerism while finding gifts for loved ones:

  • Let people pick their own things out, or ask them what they want – and get them what they ask for. The magic and purpose of giving gifts can devolve, especially during the holiday season when we can be shopping for everyone at once (hopefully not like… the week before the holidays, but we’ve all done it).  Are you giving a gift because you feel obligated to get the person a gift? Or did you thoughtfully consider that person’s wants or needs, whether and how long that person will use and enjoy the gift? Or did you get something that just fulfilled your obligation? Get your loved ones gifts that they want or need.  
  • Some conscious and creative options for gift giving? Gift someone a new or beloved experience! Ziplining, a pottery class, movie tickets, or plan a special activity to do together with that friend or loved one.  Gift cards are also a good option- and often available on request where you wouldn’t expect! Seriously: thrift and vintage stores, restaurants, local creators, think services as well as goods! 
  • Buy things that already exist. Yes, really! Buy gifts that are used/vintage! That feeling of obligation to purchase something new comes from our culture, yes, but is driven by companies, not by your sister – we really think she will still like the butter crock you got her even if it’s vintage. Shannon shares a beautiful example of how her dad gifted her an old Santa sweatshirt of his.  Shannon gets to enjoy memories of her dad when she wears this gift, and that makes the sweatshirt a memorable and special gift for her. 
  • Make your gift search low impact by shopping small and local for gifts. When you are gift shopping, check out local stores and creators first! Make it a priority to research and know how a gift you are purchasing aligns with your priorities and the priorities of the gift recipient. Buy where you are. Physically go to the store. 

Indianapolis is full of local vendors who are absolutely amazing. Here are just a sampling of our favs:

FOOD

CLOTHING & GOODS

SERVICES

OPT OUTSIDE

FOR IT’S IN GIVING THAT WE RECEIVE

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