I recently went to a fundraiser to which I had donated a piece of artwork to be auctioned. This isn’t about the event itself, this is about getting ready to go to the event, preparing to leave the house. My thoughts that evening and how those thoughts are carried forward to each day I prepare to leave the house from that day since. Stay with me here please.
I have been an art collector since 1983, no big names in my collection, just pieces that I love from artist’s I love. Nothing particularly expensive either. I believe there are preconceived notions that fine art must be expensive. It doesn’t. What I want to share with you and perhaps encourage you to consider the next time you leave your home is; who you are and what you wear says to people. I wanted to say something that night. It was expressed without words. I am sharing the words with you today and I hope you will thoughtfully consider the words and then perhaps take some action.
What came to mind as I was dressing for the event was this; I wanted to utilize and wear as many hand crafted items as I could and still look fabulous. All jewelry that I wore was hand crafted, the wrap, for a cooler night, the handbag to hold my phone, $, business cards, etc.
Do you understand what I was striving for? I would dress like anyone else except I was mindful to accessorize with art. It wasn’t gaudy, or garish, what I chose to wear or the statement I wanted to make. Most people wouldn’t notice the difference, most didn’t notice the difference. I knew though and now I want you to know. Then I want you to try it and maybe live this same philosophy as often as possible, then share the philosophy with others as often as possible.
The only handcrafted items I didn’t have to carry through my philosophy was my dress, foundation garments or “under things” and my shoes. (Artful hand crafted affordable fashion may be on it way to all of us.) I realize when you start getting into designer clothing, foundation pieces and shoes, then it may become beyond your means. It is for me too as an artist. But what I will suggest to you that if you begin to spend your money on artful accessories that you love, you too can begin to “walk the walk and talk the talk”. I’m an artist, I wear my own work and the work of others I have collected over the years. It is my opinion that you can purchase almost anything you need or want from an artist or hand crafter whether it is to adorn your body or your home. I want you to ponder each purchase you make. The “made in the USA” label has a different meaning to me than it did when I read it or heard it as a child, allow me to restate that, it now has a meaning for me, I understand it and live it.
I’m not asking you to throw everything away you have right now, I’m saying consider making your next purchase from a local artist, and then the next and then the next. Forego mass produced items from other countries of dubious craftsmanship and or safety. When you are dressing for an event, the individuality that you normally strive for can be expressed with amazing affordable art. You are supporting your local artist, your local economy and you get to be you only better.