#BrokeMinimalBabes: Meet Conscious Stylist Dacy from Mindful Closet (002)
#BrokeMinimalistBabes Series: 002
Hi everyone! I'm excited to announce #BrokeMinimalBabes, which is a new series focused on conscious bloggers. Meet Dacy, the founder of Mindful Closet and personal stylist. Dacy currently resides in a Mid-Century Modern home in St. Louis, Missouri with her husband (a bassist for the St. Louis Symphony) and her two-year-old son.
*Dacy's answers are in italics
When did you start blogging and what do you do/create?
I started blogging in March of 2013. My blog is a part of my personal styling business, mindful closet. I set out to create a business that helps people reimagine what they really want to wear and to separate themselves from what we’re constantly being told we need to wear. The blog focuses on those same issues, how to define your style, how to minimize, how to shop mindfully, etc.
How did you get into creating a conscious wardrobe?
I started thinking really hard about what I actually wore and why. I was tired of buying things and wearing them once and then donating them. Through working with my personal styling clients, I also saw that so many people were overwhelmed by their closets for one simple reason - because they had too much. By minimizing and being conscious of what you really wear, you can take a lot of stress out of the process of getting dressed. Less really is more. It wasn’t a quick or easy process, however. In the beginning months of my blog, I was still buying more than I needed and buying things from less ethical manufacturers. Our personal styles are constantly changing and shifting and there is no point at which you’ll arrive at a perfect wardrobe, which was something else I had to learn.
Define ethical and sustainable fashion?
For me, sustainable fashion means actually using and wearing what you buy. Even if you have only ethically made items, it’s not sustainable if you are continually buying new pieces, or if you have much more than you could ever wear. This is helpful if you’re overwhelmed and starting out on the sustainable path, because you should know that the most sustainable thing you can do is wear what you have. There’s no need to go out and buy a whole new “ethical” wardrobe. Technically, ethical fashion is pretty tough to define because there are so many parts of the process that can be done at so many levels of cleanness - where the clothes are made, where the fabric is made, what the labor practices are at each level, how toxic the production process is. But, like slow food, the more you can identify where your garment comes from, the more sustainable it is.
Why do you think bloggers + influencers don't speak out about ethical fashion?
To me, there’s a real conflict between the ideas of sustainable fashion as described above, and what many influencers do for pay, which is promote new items. As I mentioned, the most important part of sustainable fashion for me, as a minimalist, is that you use what you have and you only buy what you need. Influencers whose jobs are to convince people that they need more are pretty contrary to that philosophy, which is probably why not many bloggers talk about it. I’ve never had any sponsored products on my blog.
I used to be a huge fan of fashion blogs, but over the last 4 or 5 years, I’ve stopped reading most of them because they weren’t relevant to my life. Seeing someone in a new outfit every day and knowing they didn’t have to budget for it or make a decision to buy it felt so removed from reality. It doesn’t interest me. I’m more interested in seeing what people do with what they have and how they can resist the social pressure to always have the new thing.
What are your thoughts on the conscious/ethical fashion movement?
I think it’s amazing. I know that some people consider it just a trend, but as long as more people are becoming aware of the issues, I don’t really care. I also want everyone to know that ethical fashion doesn’t have to mean a certain style or price point of clothes either. It can be just as much a perspective, an awareness to be mindful about what you buy and why.
How did you get into wardrobe styling and how has that shaped the way you dress?
I’ve always loved clothes, shopping, and fashion. Pretty early on, I had pretty strong opinions about what my friends and family should wear. Over time, people started coming to me with their questions and for help shopping and putting together outfits. In my mid-30’s, I decided to make a big career change and wanted something that would align with the type of slower life I wanted to lead. I did a lot of research into the fashion industry and personal styling seemed like a good match for my skills and personality. It was what I’d already been doing informally, so I started my business, mindful closet, while I was still working full time.