How does sustainability play into your life?
Sustainability has played into my life since I was 15. When I found out about global warming, I started an environmental club is my high school. Once I went off to college, I felt so powerless over everything and sort of gave up trying. Now I know that we do make a difference as individuals, and in order for the collective to be influenced, we have to make big strides independently. I gave up fast fashion a few years ago, and I pretty much only shop independently/vintage. This is very important to me. And with my philosophy on bringing objects/items into my life/space, I am extremely discerning about what I acquire. I call this mindful collecting. We mindlessly consume, and our culture/media trains us to do so. We have to change the narrative. The work that I do is really about grounding within ourselves so that we can let go of our attachments to the physical world (emphasis on attachments, as we can't let go of the physical world). This doesn't mean you have to move into a tent in the woods. It’s truly about being mindful of the space and objects we surround ourselves with. We can change the stories we tell ourselves about what we need. We don’t need anything physical other than food/shelter (meaning, we wouldn’t die without clothing or our beloved objects). However, we can accept the society we live in and approach how we operate differently. Yes, by shopping mindfully, but also by strengthening our inner selves so that we can shift our relationship with objects from symbols to tools. If a piece of art moves you, that piece of art becomes a tool for connection. Otherwise, you just have art on your wall because “it goes there” or because it's worth something (and is therefore a symbol of money or stature). You can read more about this concept here. This method is so much less overwhelming than overhauling your entire life and becoming a radical minimalist. I'm not suggesting to NOT radically change, but I think it's important to be realistic. I’ve found that people aren't going to be open to making any strides if they feel overwhelmed. I still use paper towels. There are absolutely areas where I need to do better. I'm working on it. But I'm transparent about it. Not because I think being honest gets us off the hook, but because it's better to be honest then to paint a false picture. Sustainability is trending right now. I've been reading interviews where people say that they care about where garments come from/how they're made, and then I see these people tagging Zara in their photos. This is what's problematic and why I feel we really need to change the narrative. People care about the environment, but not to the extent that they are willing to inconvenience their lives. Hence my relationship with paper towels. But answering this question is getting me fired up and ready to end my relationship with them for good. The more open we are, the more we can inspire change in ourselves and others.
Got any good advice for us on best plants to brighten up a home?
Rubber plants are my favorite because they are the most low maintenance, and they're pet friendly. Some plants ( like aloe) are toxic to pets. I also love bringing in flowers from outside. When at a floral shop, I always pick up baby's breath and eucalyptus.