As the life long saying goes... "ya get what you pay for" and sometimes you do. Today I wanted to take a quick moment to write about something that has been on my heart lately... how and why do you choose to buy? Refined Peddler is more then just a "dream" to provide cute apparel... it's about making a difference, chasing goals, helping provide for my family and being able to operate a small business with a big heart from our family farm. Read below to find out more about why I, Kianna, am in business (and it's about a little more than business).
Everyday across my Instagram feed more and more online boutiques are popping up. With more competition in the retail world, how do you decide who to buy from? I think it comes down to which boutique aligns with your values. We all buy goods we think are cute, but as time goes on I try to be more and more intentional about my purchases and who I am purchasing from to purchase items that have value.
As an online boutique owner I am in business for several reasons; I like clothes, I like to dress cute, and I value uniqueness. I ignore trends and purchase goods I would wear personally.
I'm also in the business to try and improve the industry. The fast fashion industry is pretty much disgusting. As consumers, we buy and buy and buy and then eventually ( a lot quicker then we should ) dispose of all of the items in our closet. At Refined Peddler Apparel, I make it my mission to bring lifestyle pieces into the shop that will last and uphold with many, if not years of seasonal trends. This is how I have always shopped for myself. I could walk into my closet today and pick out something to wear that is 6+ years old... how you ask? Because of these simple steps which I implement when choosing apparel for my store.
#1. I chose goods made with sustainable and semi-sustainable fabrics such as Linen, Cotton, Hemp, Tencel and Lyocell. I really try to limit the items I purchase that are made of polyester, nylon and other synthetic fibers. Why? Because synthetic fibers are just as bad for our environment as plastic water bottles. They NEVER go away no matter how times they are donated, shipped to third world countries, or sent to our landfills.
I like to think about fibers the way someone (Elizabeth Reed, Fashion Merchandising Professor) once explained them to me...cotton, linen, and hemp are natural and grown from the earth like an apple. Rayon, tencel and lyocell are made with natural products and altered like an apple pie. And synthetic fibers such as polyester and nylon are totally fake like an apple laffy taffy. What your clothes are made of is important to a sustainable environment.
#2. Helping customers understand the laundering process. A lot of the times the longevity of our apparel is either shortened or extend through our washing habits. Personally, I wash all of my clothing (besides PJs, towels, undies etc) on a delicate cycle and allow them all to hang dry. This helps the fibers remain in preferable condition without being exposed to shrinking, pilling, and other wear and tear from extreme dryer heat or agitating washing cycles. Obviously, sometimes you do have to wash your "nice" clothing in a more rigorous cycle to remove soils.
#3. Make sure you love it and make dang sure that item fits. If you love something and it fits you well, you will wear it for years to come. Good fashion, that is true to your personality and does not follow trends, never really goes out of style.
#4. When something breaks, fix it! When it tears, the hem starts coming undone, or a button pops off, I mend my apparel. Yep, you read that right, "use a good ole needle and thread" or sewing machine and keep on wearing it.
Thank you for shopping with me at Refined Peddler Apparel. I hope together we can create a more conscious and intentional shopping effort. Never shop just to shop. And remember who we buy from, how we buy, and what we buy, is a lot more important then we think. Here's to changing the world!
P.S. I also incorporate environmentally friendly packing with all of my orders. Each order is wrapped in recycled Kraft paper (biodegradable) and tied with cotton fabric (biodegradable) and placed in a biodegradable mailer.