I asked Faith if she would be willing to be a guest on my blog due to the nature of her business. Faith’s sews, crochets, and creates upcycled products from thrifted and donated goods. Her makes range from sustainable scrunchies to shirt-sleeve pants to crochet crowns to satchel bags. She also offers alterations and repairs in her home studio.Faith is a genius when it comes to making something both practical and beautiful out of something that would otherwise be thrown away. Her passions for educating and caring for our planet are apparent in her work, and I learned so much about upcycling and reducing waste from my conversation with her.
A few weeks ago, Carson and I sat down to talk about our goals for the next few years. We have some big dreams of investing in a rental property of some kind to use as passive income to save for Lincoln’s future—whether trade school or college or something else that the Lord calls him to. I remember sitting in our swivel rockers one evening after Lincoln went to bed, and I told Carson that I needed a new, very specific goal to save for—given I already have about eight that I’m trying to juggle. We are nearing the end of our major renovations on this house—there is still a lot to be done, but I often have a desire to move on to the next big thing.
Instagram has its downsides, but it is also a place where I have had the opportunity to make connections and form friendships with people I would otherwise probably never meet. Kerith O’Sail and I found each other through my shop, Elsie James Clothing. I’m not really sure if I found her or she found me, but regardless-I am so grateful for the connection! Kerith’s account focuses on how to implement Montessori principles at home from pregnancy through childhood. She is passionate about respectful parenting, sustainable living, and childhood development. She is an incredibly innovative and creative person who has a lot of ideas for how to get started with Montessori with natural resources or items you may already have it home. If you are interested in learning more about Montessori but are intimidated or unsure where to start, this post is for you!
I’m a busy mom with a toddler and limited time to spend on getting ready in the morning, so I tend to choose outfits that are comfortable and easy to put together. I have found that planning my outfits the night or even a few days in advance and doing my hair the night before helps me get ready in less than 15 minutes the following morning. Although many of the items below were bought secondhand, I hope that these outfits get you thinking about creative ways you can use clothing you already have as well as ideas for items that might fill some gaps within your wardrobe.
I’ve never really been a “jewelry” girl until recently. My mom is someone who wears jewelry really well. She has a small collection of dainty pieces ranging from hoops to studs to teardrop necklaces to pearls. Her pieces are minimal, carefully chosen, and compliment her outfits as opposed to distracting them. I’ve been learning recently how jewelry can be seen as an investment and collection of heirloom pieces with special meaning tied to their value.
One item that I have been wanting to add to my wardrobe is a new pair of walking shoes. I have an old hot pink and blue running shoe from when I was in high school cross country and a barely-holding-on pair of grey walking shoes that I bought a few years prior. I wear these grey shoes with jeans, shorts, and when working outside. They are still usable for yard work but definitely look a little raggedy when paired with jeans and a pullover. Allbirds generously gifted me a pair of their beautiful and functional shoes. I chose their white wool runners because I knew that they would blend well with the items I already owned and would dress up even a casual jeans and tee outfit.
Since embarking on this journey toward a more sustainable lifestyle, we have been looking not only for cleaner products but also for ways to reduce our consumption. A few years ago, I found a cleaning concentrate from Rocky Mountain Oils that lasts for months and can be used on nearly every surface in our home.
Today is the day, friends! At 12 pm CST, I am officially relaunching my handmade clothing shop–Elsie James Clothing. For those of you who have been following along for some time, you probably know most of the story behind my brand. But if you’re new, I wanted to provided a brief synopsis of the who, what, where, when, why, and how of this passion project of mine.
Last year, I remember staring at closet overflowing with clothing that I didn’t like and didn’t wear. I had just given birth to my son a few months prior, and a lot of the clothes that I had worn before no longer fit well or were nursing friendly. We were also several months into covid, and I found myself living in oversized shirts with holes and stained sweats with pilling fabric. I didn’t feel put together or confident and even though I really wasn’t going anywhere, I wanted to feel not only comfortable but also classy in the clothing that I owned.
Today, I have the honor of sharing an interview with Cecilia Thibault–who recently sold her car and bikes to work nearly every day. I had the privilege of meeting with Cecilia Thibault last week, and after talking with her for an hour I was so inspired and started rethinking a lot of aspects of how I live my life. Cecilia is an incredibly talented and multi-passionate person–she loves dance, she started an organization to provide leadership opportunities for young Latino professionals, she recently bought her first rental property with her husband, and she has multiple long-term goals to better serve our community.