Every day that you walk out the door is a march. How you act tells the world what you stand for, and everything you choose to put on is a sign proclaiming your values, whether your statement is conscious or not.
For example, today I am marching for frugality and also water conservation. That's why I look disgusting. For a higher purpose.
See, this fall, we went trick-or-treating at an old farmhouse, and the man who lived there mentioned (in between ghosts, gore and Skittles) that my town calculates its water bills as the average of what you use in January and February. Without factchecking this in any way, my husband and I decided to leap all in and use as little water as possible for the first two months of 2017.
What this looks like is unwashed clothes on rarely showered people, slowly sipping precious agua out of recyclable cups so we don't have to run the dishwasher.
It's getting torturous, but I'm too stubborn to quit now; we're halfway there, and I'm sure all this hassle will totally be worth the $1.23 it'll probably end up saving us per month.
There are other (more sanitary and fashionable) ways to make a statement, too.
Like the jewelry designed by Boulderite Karen Tyler Boelts.
About five years into her creative journey, she found out one of her children was LGBT.
(Sadly, Boelts says she doesn't want to share her child's name, age or any more details about the orientation, because of the current political climate and the fact that her child is attending college in a community Boelts fears may not support a public outing.) This news shifted the focus on Boelts' passion, and she began working as an advocate for the LGBT community in Boulder. She served on the board of PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) and the Safe Schools Coalition. Oslobet Aimee Heckel (Boulder and the Beautiful) Her speciality was equality in education and supporting LGBT youth.
As her children grew older and more independent, Boelts says she was pulled back to her jewelry-making and decided to fuse her two passions. She launched a line of LGBT-friendly jewelry- such as hearts shaped out of precious metal clay inscribed with an equal sign, or necklaces with two female symbols hanging together.
"I wanted to express myself and where my heart was, and the only options I saw available were rainbows," Boelts says. Nothing against rainbows, of course. (Criticizing rainbows is on the same level as hating puppies and unicorns and streamers on bike handles.) But Boelts was looking for another option: sophisticated jewelry that was beautifully designed, subtle and elegant. Something you could wear to a wedding or even in a wedding, but also to the coffee shop or gym.
Her line includes necklaces, bracelets and earrings. She also makes inspirational pieces and beadwork.
A portion of sales of her equality heart necklace is donated to families and victims of the shooting at the gay nightclub Pulse in Florida.
"It's really about getting out this message of love and equality in a subtle, fashionable way," Boelts says. "Any time somebody buys an equality message, I feel like I'm doing a little bit to put the message out."
Find Boelts' jewelry online, as well as several shops in Boulder, such as Starfish. The line is also carried in Denver, Texas, Arizona and California.
Contact Aimee Heckel at aimeeheckel@ gmail.com, twitter.com/ Aimeemay and AimeeHeckel.com.
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