The name of the designers of this colorful and fabulously oversized vest I am wearing is Social Work. On their about page, the brand represents itself as “A Collective Culture Across Hybrid Practices” . They actualize this idea through the mission of the brand:

“With Its Emphasis On Production Transparency, Social-Work Is Aiming To Bridge The Cultural Connection Between Customers And Makers. It Raises A Social Dialogue On Who, Where And What Is Behind Our Products.”

I have to wonder if any of the founders actually knew social workers because I feel that how they represent themselves, and how I represent myself as a social worker, are beautifully articulated in the words “collective culture across hybrid practices.” My work has always been to have a dialog with society and policy makers on who, what and where is behind the policies, regulations, interventions, social reforms or the “products” of social welfare and government. In many ways my new project has done just that within the institution of fashion in that many people who love and wear clothes (or the products) were not seeing themselves represented in the fashion media and now increasingly do. I think I realized that perhaps I have played a small part in transforming culture when I received this comment from a young woman the other day:

“Every time I see a post of yours…I literally want to do what no woman has ever wanted to do…I want to be older because you make it look so sensational.”

Rather than the usual, “I want to be like you when I get older”, this comment makes getting older something that is no longer to be feared but embraced because it is attractive. Rather than allow the media to control how they represented me, I decided to take control myself! Sometimes there needs to be leaders who will give visibility and voice to others until they feel supported enough to exercise their own.

On Social Work’s website there is a tab called DATABASE. When you click on it you can find the item you have purchased or contemplating purchasing and see this, ot in my case: The Green Floral Sweater Vest. Now I know why I feel so happy when I wear it. To see more “happy” clothes make sure you take a look at Social Work