"Use my code to get 15% off at checkout".
"Looking for the perfect fall staple? This is it."
"Invest in fewer, better pieces, and you'll thank yourself later on"
A few excerpts from my least favorite aspect of blogging: promoting consumption. As a lover of simplicity, intentional slow downs, and ethical fashion and culture, I'm often caught in the crosshairs of two seemingly conflicting lifestyles. The first, promoting the brands I respect, love, use, and believe are making the world a better place. The second, preaching that slow and simple wins the race — not really "wins" but certainly makes your life easier.
How can someone who has a capsule wardrobe continually promote new brands, add new pieces to her own life, and encourage her readers to do the same?
It's something I've internally (and, luckily, externally with some of my most trusted ethical blogging buddies), debated since I began accepting sponsored posts over a year ago.
If I didn't have the words "simple living" and "slow fashion" scrawled across my profile and, even, chiseled into my identity, I wouldn't have such a hard time. But, you see, I fully believe in the benefits of slowing down. It changed my life and the practice of intentionally adding pieces to my closet and life has turned buying into a life giving (dramatic word choice, I know) practice, instead of an unhealthy habit.
I also, however, fully believe in the ethical fashion revolution. I hate (dramatic word choice, I know) how the fast fashion industry pollutes not only our world but our thinking and our standards. I think brands who are making products sustainably, slowly, ethically, and beautifully deserve to be recognized.
But how do these two convictions mesh without conflict as a blog (and real person)? Do my passions really butt heads?
Here's the thing though — and not everyone will agree with this, and that's okay — life is rarely made up of black and white lines. I've learned that there's much more grey area than I'm usually comfortable with. The line between "slow living" and "consumerism" is a fine one and, of course, it looks differently for everyone.
Simply Liv & Co. at it's heart, is a publication (not a person) designed to connect brands producing ethically and intentionally to consumers who are hoping to spend their money on products that matter. That means that I (the person behind the blog) often receive products to review, payment for my research and writing, and pitches to collaborate (MANY of which I have to turn down due to ethical differences) which means I consume more than I typically would without my blog.
Although when I first started working with brands, the sheer excitement of "getting noticed" for my years of blogging caused me to over-collaborate, which meant, ending up with a bunch of products that were well made but not things I really, really loved for my own life. Now though, I'm extremely picky about which brands I work with and ensure that each new product I review, buy, or receive is something I genuinely love and will use in my day to day life. This little space has turned into a part-time job (with full-time hours) and I don't see it stopping any time soon.
But what does that mean for you, my readers, who are equally as interested in ethical fashion and slow living as I am?
It means that you don't have to buy everything I blog about on SL&Co.
It means you can use the blog and the resources I've curated like the List and the Affordable List to shop when you need to and support the brands who are changing the fashion industry for the better when you can.
It means that you don' t have to feel guilty when your capsule wardrobe progresses slowly, or when your life doesn't feel Instagram-worthy (because 99.89% of the time, mine isn't either).
It means that you can voice your questions and your concerns and open up a dialogue with me (the real person) who struggles with balance as much as the next person.