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A Note from the Founder: Metamorphosis

Blue butterfly

 

When I first started planning for this collection, my initial idea was to go to the library to look for inspiration. It had already been a year since the launch of Wearshop. Looking back and reflecting on the year that passed, I found myself with the recurrent thought that I wanted to move forward, making sure that my work stayed connected to who I was. 

Whenever we try something new, be it a new job, a new relationship, or take any kind of new direction, we have to physically and mentally adapt to the newness. As we adapt to this new transition period, one of two things happen, either our authentic self shines, or, as we adapt to the new process, a little light of our authenticity becomes dimmer with time. It is a challenge to move forward, while staying grounded to what makes you, you. Broadening your mind, while not letting go completely of your base is not always an easy thing to do. 

So there I was planning my collection, amongst a pile of books: books on classic poetry, Italian architecture, books on biology, mostly butterflies. I fell upon a page on the transition of a caterpillar into a butterfly. Transition. Metamorphosis.

During the first year of my business, I was in an island of events that made my new endeavor all the more challenging. So I read a lot. I read Michelle Obama’s Becoming. Phil Night’s Shoe Dog, Mineko Iwasaki’s Geisha, a Life. Deepak Chopra’s 7 spiritual laws of success. I truly believe that books choose you. That you read the books you need to read depending on what you are going through in your life. The writers of these books became my mentors. What struck me throughout all these stories were their transition and their strength. Transition. Moving forward. Metamorphosis. 

The word metamorphosis was the one that stayed with me at the library. I started Wearshop with the idea of designing for the professional woman, of redefining what the idea of a professional woman is. Who is the woman who works? Who is the woman who moves forward? What does she wear? How does she think? What are her insecurities? What are her vulnerabilities? What are her strengths?

Within the journey of working and moving forward, we need to adapt. We adapt to our environment. To our family, to our friends. To our colleagues. To our offices. We learn the languages we need to speak to continue on. Business language. Corporate talk. Design spirit. Sometimes we speak this language so well, using the correct words, the right phrases, only to realize we sound nothing like who we actually are. Picture perfect on paper with no soul - a scary thought. We yearn to adapt so much that we let go of that piece of authenticity, that ever-important thing that makes us, us. 

And so I had this idea of launching the new styles with this concept around metamorphosis. On moving forward. On adapting. On becoming. While staying true to who I am.

And then COVID happened. And a new reality took shape and form. The planet went still. Maybe you didn’t go still for four months, maybe it was for a month or a week, but there was a moment, where you, along with millions of others, went still. The funny thing about stillness is that it can force us to lean into a new perspective and push us to reevaluate. In this period of learning and reflection, you will eventually find yourself making a decision - and maybe the moment in which you make a decision is brief, but a decision is made nonetheless. The truth is, the reality of this decision is, you have two choices: do I move forward, or not?

Once the reality of COVID set in, a flurry of unfortunate events took place in the US, punctuated by George Floyd’s death. While we were already experiencing history books being written firsthand, the world began to see more history being made before their eyes, a revolution beginning to unfold. What a thing to witness, seeing everyone react, come together, to fight for change and a better future. 

So metamorphosis took a whole new shape and meaning for me and for the collection. Moving forward was no longer just about me, it became about us. As women, as people, as a collective, on moving forward. For ourselves, for each other, for our planet, for our children. 

The next level of you is bound to a foundation of your authentic self, like a special glue. I feel that, truthfully, all people are a series of steps, coming from one place, and going to the next, adapting to their environment; constantly transforming and becoming.

My own vision of metamorphosis took on a metamorphosis of its own. While at the beginning, I was very focused on the inner meaning of it all, how it affected me, or others, as individuals, as the world changed, the way I saw things changed with it. A caterpillar doesn’t undergo a metamorphosis because it wants to look prettier, it undergoes a metamorphosis because that is what is necessary for its survival, for it to continue to move forward. While in its cocoon, a caterpillar liquefies before emerging as a butterfly - though it changes forms, the butterfly retains memories from its time as a caterpillar. Much like the state of the world, we have to remember where we were before to know why it’s essential to continue moving forward.