When I was a little girl my mama started calling me a Magpie because I gathered "stuff" everywhere I went. Old stuff, nature's stuff, paper stuff (could not get enough pamphlets at a visitor's center), other people's "stuff" that I'd talk them out of, and then I'd take that stuff home and either use it for something different or making something new out of it. I loved it.
I'd take all my findings to the picnic table under the pine trees at the edge of the cow pasture and lay my loot out to sort through it all. The tiny fabric clippings, buttons, rocks, an empty matchbox, gum wrappers. I mean come on, with that alone I could completely remodel the living room AND kitchen for my tiny finger puppet mouse family. The possibilities were endless. And it was a stellar day if I made it to the table with a few "cat tails" from the pond. Those were PERFECT cigars for all my teddy bears.
(that'd be me and LC circa 1974 taking a break on the sand pile after gathering construction scrap)
I repurposed before it was a word and I never stopped. It's literally been a part of every aspect of my life, from my art, designing my home, raising my kids and let's face it... my rescue work. So, I should have known that when I began Complimentees, my concern about getting into the clothing industry and adding to the problem of textiles in our landfills all over the world, would lead to a whole second line of goods.
It wasn't until I really began focusing on making RePurposed by Complimentees an actual "for reals" situation, that I understood how every good thing in life, has had a life before and since been repurposed. And I wasn't thinking just about material objects...
It's about every mistake you've ever made coming around to a best decision. It's love's second chances. It's about recovering from our greatest fails and being stronger for them. It's learning to remove those who are no longer representing who you are from your life and discovering the people who give you, well, repurpose.
(used t-shirts distressed and screen printed...a brand new beginning and one less shirt in the garbage)
But, it's also the fun and silly stuff. Thinking of things to do with discarded t-shirts has been a brain giggle for sure and I think the most exciting tidbit about this adventure is that right now, it feels endless. The ideas are swarming my head faster than I can get them down on paper and I've had to force myself to stay focused on one brain giggle at a time.
(One t-shirt can make two slouchy beanies....one of a kind fashion that everyone can enjoy)
I think it's perfect that we are launching this line in the spring. The season of renewal. That time of year when you feel like nothing can stop you and the whole world seems to get a second chance at blooming. The whole world gets a chance at "repurpose".
Do you believe what you wear?
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