Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category
Sunday, April 29th, 2012
There are times we look back upon with a certain nostalgia. We feel a certain wistfulness for “what was”, a sense of “those were the days”.
Something tells me the days of 21 Jump Street (1987-1991) won’t soon be one of those eras.
As I sat down to collect photos for this piece, I was struck with an overwhelming thought; Ew. Oftentimes when we look back upon some of the classic television shows or movies of past years we find something redeeming. Something that we can draw parallels with in contrast to today’s culture. While the 70′s and 80′s often reemerge in predictable ways in modern fashion, we’re left with more “what not to wear” moments than exciting reinterpretations when opening the fashion vaults of 21 Jump Street.
Now, the fact that these images are of Johnny Depp will distract many a viewer from the frightening reality that it looks as though Billy Idol and NKOTB were in a tragic science experiment gone wrong (similar to that of “The Fly“). The truth is, Depp could get away with wearing a trash bag and birkenstocks. Replace the face in these photos with that of your highschool PE teacher and you’ll see what I mean. Quasi fashion becomes “did I really need to see that”?
In the true spirit of old fashion looks reinvented, here is one of our looks as inspired by the ghosts of 21 Jump Street.
Tuesday, March 13th, 2012
One would not immediately think that this is a topic on which you’d need instruction. Seems pretty straightforward, right? Arm through arm-holes, head through neck-hole, proceed accordingly.
As it turns out, some of us could use a little advice on the topic. Do I go form fitting? Do I wear it cropped? Is neon yellow a good color for me? Ed Hardy; is he still cool?
In regards to the last questions, that’s a giant “NO”. The others? Not so clear-cut.
Show a little buff
Gentleman, it is absolutely the case that you should be proud of the work you’ve done in the gym. The grueling, tiresome, pain-inducing hours you’ve spent there should not be for naught. Some strategically chosen tees can assist you in the exhibition of your assets. Having said that, it needn’t be painted on. Take our fine fellow Hugh, if you will:
If anyone could lay claim to the inability to find a shirt which could amply house ones biceps, it would be the Wolverine himself. You’ll notice here though that Hugh has found the perfect amount of cotton to both show and not suffocate his fitness efforts. A nice, white, clean tee. Well done.
A little belly is still, a belly
With the re-emergence of the Crop Top(one never know how long exactly these things will stay) I feel it somewhat necessary to cover some brief yet valuable ground rules. The Crop Top continues to be everywhere this spring/summer and while you should absolutely consider this look for your wardrobe, remember that just because you can, doesn’t always mean you should.
You can tastefully show off a little midsection without going all exhibitionist with some of these great tops. Do you have the naval for it? We’ll leave that up to you, but remember that less is more. You can also pair these tops with some leggings, a skirt, or some great high-rise jeans. Get the cropped look without the exposed belly.
What do you think of these looks?
Graphic Tees; did they die out yet?
Au contraire, mon frère. Graphic tees are in fact now bigger and better (and sometimes badder) than ever. There is literally a graphic t-shirt out there with every celeb, athlete, train-wreck reality show star and hip-h0p mogul you can think of on it. Want a tee professing your love of large women? It’s out there. Want one advertising the new hoops sensation Jeremy Lin? Done. How about one with your own picture on it? I know a guy who can get that by tomorrow.
Again, we’re back to the “because I can, should I?” dilemma. Here is what I’ll say; consider your age, your place of work, the day of the week, and your significant other. These all come into play. A graphic tee does indeed add a nice little bit of edge to an outfit. A little bit of attitude.
These and others are just a few bits of advice to take into consideration when styling a new, fashionable tee into your outfit.
Or of course as some seem to do, you could take all of this advice, do the opposite, and who knows…maybe start a worldwide trend.
I doubt it though.
Friday, March 9th, 2012
At Faith & Fortune one of the continual underlying themes in what we do is an attempt to connect the dots between our day-to-day lives and the needs of those around us. How can we make small decisions that can impact others in untold ways. As members of a large western community it’s often easy to feel as though our efforts can go unnoticed and without effect. I’m just one person, and there is so much need. What difference can I make?
So We Run, as told on their website “is a public charity operating under the IRS section 501(c)(3). SWR exists to support individuals, churches, schools, non-government organizations and any other entities both locally and abroad by providing them with new or lightly worn shoes in an attempt to encourage action, inspire hope, promote change and impart dignity.” Sounds pretty professional, right? It is. You know what else it is? It’s an idea that started with 2 people who live normal working lives who knew they could do something special with their extra time. It’s not a conglomerate of people with multi-million dollar underwriting and it’s not always sexy. In fact, it’s often a lot of work.
We wanted to know a little bit more about So We Run and where the idea started, so we sat down with co-founders Keith Krass and Ryan Smith.
Tell us about how So We Run got Started?
The vision for So We Run (SWR) began in 2006 when I was a student at Gordon College in Wenham, MA. I played basketball at Gordon and at the beginning of each year we got a new pair of shoes. I have been playing basketball my entire life and every year I purchased a new pair of shoes. For some reason it hit me when I was in college that I have a closet full of shoes that I will probably never wear again but these shoes are certainly in decent enough condition for someone to use.
I google searched something like “donate used shoes” and the organization Soles4Souls came up. I read about them and liked their mission so I began collecting shoes on Gordon’s campus for that organization.
In 2008 I traveled to Argentina with the Gordon men’s basketball team. While there I met a woman whose parents ran a soccer school in southeast Asia. Sadly, many of the boys that attended this school were unable to participate in the end of the season tournament, as the first rule of competition was that all players must have footwear of some kind. Many of the boys did not pass this requirement.
I realized that even though Soles4Souls was reaching tons and tons of people, there were still groups, like these boys at the soccer school, that would never receive shoes from them.
I figured, I might as well help them.
That is a great question. We realize the limitations of giving only shoes. In fact, we have been working on several different ideas to incorporate athletics and education into our organization. But on a fundamental level, there is a big need for quality footwear across the globe. Two years ago SWR was in Guatemala working on a building project with the organization Little Lambs International. We worked with several Guatemalans in laying a foundation for a building that will become an orphanage. Many of these workers were performing heavy construction in sandals. What made this so poignant to me was as we traveled around we couldn’t help but notice the hundreds and hundreds of individuals that had been reduced to begging because they had lost limbs. One small accident and probably the only trade these workers have would be taken from them. Also the amount of infections and disease that can very easily be limited just by individuals, kids especially, having their feet covered. We know shoes wont fix everything, but we think it can help.
You both have full-time day jobs; what are the challenges of running a charity on your off-hours?
As our organization continues to grow, it is requiring more and more of our time. To be candid, this has been very difficult for us at times. My hope and prayer is that eventually we will have the financial backing to hire part-time staff but right now we are relying heavily on volunteers. We do feel very blessed to have the volunteers we have. Almost without exception, every time I’m feeling frustrated with the lack of time I can put towards SWR I get an email or a phone call from someone asking if they can help out. It has been remarkable.
The greatest need we have:
The greatest need we have is God’s mercy. I sincerely mean that. Our staff and financial resources are very limited. We desire to make lasting change for good on a global scope. With a task this grand, our own ambition, hard work and creativity is like tilting windmills.
Has it been a rewarding experience? What are your greatest experiences to date?
Unbelievably rewarding. I can’t even begin to explain emotion I feel when we receive a card or email from someone thanking us for the shoes. In terms of greatest experiences, I think two stand out to me. The first group of kids we sent shoes to in southeast Asia (specific location cannot be disclosed for safety purposes). They weren’t allowed to play in their league’s playoffs without footwear. We sent them 14 pairs of soccer cleats. I’m incredibly competitive, so just the idea that they were allowed to compete get me fired up. The second one is a vastly different story. We had been around for only about a month or two when I got an email from a young woman who was in the midst of her student teaching. She was very troubled because she was told she had to dress up for her first day of work but she could not afford nice shoes. This just reiterated to me the fact that the need is both across the globe and in our backyard.
Where do you envision the organization going?
I honestly don’t know. I hope we can help people for the next hundred years. We hope to include sports camps and education into what we do moving forward but that is still in the works.
How can people help?
Cover us in prayer. We need it. Like most nonprofits we are also looking for financial support. We are hoping to have 20 individuals support us monthly this year. People can also contact me if they know individuals that need shoes. Truthfully, we have about as many shoes as our storage unit can hold. Right now we just have to find people to donate them to!
One of the themes that I’ve noticed as a constant in the journey of a charity or organization like So We Run is the driving desire of the founders to “make a difference”. This is often due to a pressing need they feel has to be met. It’s not a duty, a job, or a chore; they do this because they care and are passionate about it. You get the feeling that there is a restlessness there, that if ignored will haunt them until they embrace the challenge. They aren’t titans of industry. They don’t have endless resources (in fact, quite the opposite), and there are no celebrity endorsements (yet). But the point is, they’re trying.
Faith & Fortune is always impressed with everyday people trying to do extraordinary things, and we’re happy to promote them. If you know of anyone with a similar story, let us know. We’d love to promote them too.
In the meantime, hopefully this story inspires you to take that step toward something you’ve been itching to give a try. Whether your motivation is faith based, self-inspired, or just a desire to be part of the solution, we applaud that and encourage you to give it a try. You won’t know if you have that special idea until you put it into action, and you may regret it if you don’t.
Good luck, and keep us posted!
Thursday, February 23rd, 2012
Yes, yes. It’s yet ANOTHER post on Faith & Fortune and our limited edition threads appearance on Karmaloop.com.
Hey, can you really blame us for being so excited? Karmaloop has exposed our brand to millions of their community members around the world. In a period of less than 3 weeks we’ve shipped apparel off to Paris, Ontario, Hawaii, and now Denmark. Sure we’ve been shown all kinds of love in the US, but it’s this international flair that has us so pumped.
More than anything it’s the cumulative effect that this kind of exposure has. New doors have opened with great stores and we’re growing the F&F community. As we re-vamp our website and seek to continue the focus of our charitable partnerships (As always, check out the rad folks at Rock For Justice) new resources will allow for new activities and new product development for you.
So head on over to our webstore at Karmaloop and see what’s going on there.
Let us know what you think!
Monday, February 20th, 2012
As we continue to produce new designs and source as many super-soft tees and hoodies as we can, quietly behind the scenes we have been working on our first ever custom product piece. With no timeline in mind and an attitude of education, we are aggressively pursuing “operation cardigan”.
A shawl-neck lightweight piece, this is one of those mens staples that we intend to be an exciting addition to your closet, but not one in danger of being lost in trend-tragedy. You know those items all too well; it was really cool for a week (maybe even a season if you’re lucky), never to be worn again. Buried and doomed to obscurity in your basement, you live with regret over the purchase.
We’ve been scouring the style blogs and perusing trends to find that right mix of flair and stability. Something that gives you the comfort of familiarity but with an ever-so-feint head-turning characteristic. This could be the color. It could be a well-crafted piece of embroidery. It could even be a patch. Who knows.
To be sure, this springs color pallet is one of a bright and optimistic spirit; a collection of colors sure to put a pep in your step.
What do you think? What would turn your head without turning you off?
Monday, February 6th, 2012
I’m sure this is not the only blog written on the inspirational qualities of Willy Wonka. I’m sure creativity, youthfulness, innocence and heavy drug use have all been considered (don’t tell me there were not heavy doses of various hallucinogenics passed around during set + costume design).
Safely, we can probably assume that not many an article has referenced the fashion cues provided by one Gene Wilder in the lead role as Willy Wonka. However, I say we would be remiss to not consider the incredible creative inspiration provided by a movie like this.
So, the key in situations where we use wildly imaginative and colorful examples as a template for something we seek to put our own spin on is to consider the time. By “time” I mean “how does this stranslate” to the modern days I live in. Obviously this outfit shown from Willy Wonka would be a tad, how do I say, crazy to wear piece for piece.
What we want to do is pick and choose elements (colors, shapes, styles, combinations, etc.) that fit not only our personality and taste, but current trends.
We’ve chosen some pieces that stand out with some volume (the blazer), some staples that bring timeless elements (the saddle shoe and hat) to the outfit, and something light and complimentary and trendy in the scarf.
What do you think? How would you change this to fit your personal style?
Check out more insights like this and see our limited edition apparel at Faith & Fortune.
Wednesday, February 1st, 2012
You either love football or hate it with the fire of a thousand suns. I’m convinced there is no halfway liking what takes place on the gridiron (no, it’s not a place where waffles are made, silly).
I happen to be one of those crazed fans who can’t get enough of the hoopla. There’s pretty much 2 in-your-face weeks of jam-packed content to digest. If your team is playing (which mine is), it’s a veritable utopia of sorts. If your team isn’t playing, or if you can’t stand sports in general, this is your personal “hell week”.
Fret not though my friends; even if you’re not a fan of 300lb men crushing one another there is plenty to celebrate fashion-wise. Below is a quick run down of some of this weekends biggest players (and I don’t mean waistline) and how they choose to throw-down on the runway (i.e. the walk from the locker room to the post game interview podium).
Many athletes aren’t exactly known for their sartorial skill so much as their 40-yard dash speed or vertical jump, but these guys and many others know how to spend their money when it comes to style. Give them credit; money doesn’t always equal taste (see Ed Hardy).
Monday, January 30th, 2012
You’ve probably heard the chatter over here for a litte while now. Well it’s official; Faith & Fortune on Karmaloop is a reality.
As of today several styles are “live” on the site, including some that are exclusive to Karmaloop. We’re very excited to have this opportunity with the e-commerce retail giant (these guys get over 5 billion unique hits a year…unreal).
Take a sneak peak below and see what you see.
Monday, January 23rd, 2012
We’ve all been there. It’s the moment when you realize that no matter how ahead of the curve you think you might be, someone else is right on your tail. In fact, 1000 someone elses are right on your tail.
Lack of Originality
This goes back as far as 5th grade. I remember it vividly. Painfully.
I was strutting down the middle school hallways, jammin out to my yellow Sony Walkman. Sure, no one else could hear what I was rockin’ in my headphones, but they were all about to get schooled in the ways of Vanilla Ice. That’s right. Having successfully snuck the white-wonders album by my parents, I was a trendsetting fool.
Well actually, it turns out I was just a fool. What I didn’t realize was that every wannabe white kid from my neck of the woods was rocking the same “ice ice baby” jam I was. My ego and sense of originality was deflated.
It’s worse with fashion
With music it’s pretty widely accepted that once a musician starts to gain a little popularity, usually the momentous growth towards VH1 stardom is inevitable. We can all accept to some degree that it’s not reasonable to expect underground vitality forever.
When it comes to fashion, though, really nothing is a bigger bummer than walking down the street or into a party and coming face to face with someone who has THE SAME EXACT piece of clothing on that you do. Fashion is so much a display of individual taste that we feel a sense of personal violation when this happens.
How do we work around this? Simple.
Limited Edition Apparel Production
Yes, we print less than 75 of all of our shirts. Yes, we do this intentionally. While we do look forward to a day where demand raises production into the high triple digits, we always want Faith & Fortune to be know as a limited edition brand. Sure it’s cool to say, but the reality is that we’re all about originality. We want you to be able to truly rock some threads that no one else in your circle is going to be wearing.
Sometimes it’s fun to be like everyone else (like when it comes to having a head, a digestive track, a working heart, etc.), but why not put a little distance between yourself and that weird kid at the shake-n-skate drive through if you can help it? Glad to be of service.
Does anyone stand out here?
Wednesday, January 18th, 2012
Don’t believe me? Fine. I can be reasoned with. I’ll admit that this is difficult to back up without any substantial evidence.
HOWEVER, where you have to acknowledge defeat is in the fact that limited edition graphic apparel without question, makes you a better person. I mean, let’s explore the facts: You own something really cool (in this case a t-shirt or sweatshirt), that brings you a certain level of coolness. In addition, you happen to own something really cool that is also hard to come by. Do you feel me? Are we connecting? In more technical terms, it would look like this:
See what a simple, colorful, comfortable piece of clothing can do for a persons mood?
I realize this may seem an exercise is juvenile behavior, but the point is clearly made. Creatively designed clothing adds life, color, and sometimes a conversation piece (did we mention that less than 50 of these tees are usually ever produced?).
While I will begrudgingly concede that we can’t assert with 100% certainty that a specific type of clothing raises your “coolness” factor, you have to admit, these guys and gals below look pretty rad. Right?
File under “cool, extremely soft, colorful, graphic apparel”.