DECEMBER 11, 2018
How Dhirta’s Label LOVE CHANGE is Styling a Healthier Future for Fashion
With her line of sustainable clothing called LOVE CHANGE, Dhirta Rikhye is out to spark a wave of slow fashion among Indian millennials. read more
Sustainability is at the core of evolution, evolution being the slow march towards progress and efficiency. As a species, we have evolved from individual hunters to tribes of hunter-gatherers to villages of agriculturists and beyond. This evolution occurred hand in hand with a conscious realization our species had over time that to survive, we must create systems that work—long term. The invention of agriculture, a sustainable system of producing food, freed up humanity to focus on things other than basic survival. As a naturally curious species, the freedom we won from the daily grind of “hunt-kill-survive” allowed us to focus on our intellect. Philosophies and languages were created to express ideas and thoughts. A universally understandable system of symbols was invented which has evolved over centuries to provide a platform on which our scientific theories can be expressed, challenged and improved upon—essentially, a system that can evolve sustainably in tandem with our ever increasing understanding of the planet and the universe.
One of the reasons why we are at the top of the food chain is our instinct of curiosity. Given enough time, we are instinctively (and curiously) able to create robust, efficient and sustainable solutions to everyday problems. Ironically, however, each time we achieve a level of progress, we invariably wind up ignoring this instinct. A basic study of history shows that previous attempts at “civilization” have followed the same steps—a “civilization” rises out of chaos, creates various systems that allow it to thrive and then, eventually, begins to neglect these systems, which leads to an eventual decline. The decline too, follows a pattern of overpopulation, denial and an indiscriminate use of resources. The people who created the systems that fuelled the initial rise to power usually become either over dependent on the systems to produce results or too comfortable with the gratification that the systems bring. What swiftly follows is a near dogmatic adherence to previously held beliefs with no room for discussion and evolution. Demands and desires begin to out-weigh intelligence and sensitivity and the systems, once built to sustain progress, become its undoing.
The current phase of human planetary civilization is probably the largest and most sustained progressive step we have taken in recorded history— predominantly because we have used science and invented technology. We have systematically industrialized as many aspects of our lives as we can in order to free up our time, by reducing the need for manual labour and maximizing output. This mechanization and industrialization has had far reaching effects, but the sheer size of the planet ensured that the ever-expanding human empire did not feel the catastrophic results of indiscriminate expansion directly for a long time. While we are all sensitized to the horrors of wars and epidemics, never in history have we realized the scale of environmental havoc that has been wreaked in the name of progress.
It is widely accepted (and literally perceived) that the weather is changing—rapidly and mostly adversely. While many opponents of the global warming phenomenon would like to live in denial, the intensity of the weather has seen a rapid change over the last few decades. Air pollution is out of control in the “production friendly” parts of the world—mainly India, China and Bangladesh where air and water pollution levels are alarming. The entire eco-system has begun to change in these countries—rivers have changed colour, children are being advised to stop playing outdoors, the elderly are being over medicated and the working class is being kept busy with their ever-mounting debts—thanks, most of all to the unsustainable consumerist lifestyle being propagated through every media channel possible. Our lifestyles have become un-sustainable to the point where we are in a collective “Stockholhm syndrome”—harbouring a love for the very things that not only cause us harm, but also keep us enslaved.
Being enslaved to unnecessary comfort and apathy, however, is a choice. As a revolutionary thinker once pointed out, we can choose to emancipate ourselves from mental slavery and free our minds. The tyranny imposed by desensitization can be overcome with curiosity. Curiosity is the catalyst that has propelled the human race from the beginning. And it is curiosity that can be our guide, if we just pay attention to that—our most basic instinct.
We must learn—learn to teach ourselves where our “things” come from. We must assess the “real” cost of the physical adornments we choose through understanding the environmental impact that our clothes and accessories have. This is no small task and like any knowledge that is worth gaining, it requires patience and a realization—a realization that compels every sensitive human to question the status quo.
So choose awareness, not dogma. Choose research, not hearsay. Choose love, not apathy. Embrace positive change and watch in wonder as positive change embraces you!
The visual we experience when the word “Holi” is uttered.
Holi, while a playful and fun festival, is deeper than just smearing colours on each other. The spirit behind the festival is one of spiritual enlightenment—the realization and belief that underneath it all, every individual life form is a small, yet integral part of a larger system.
The Holi colours, created by artful and precise manipulations of a variety of natural herbs, spices and flowers are symbolic of the living world we perceive. The invisible hand that has crafted the world has created fantastic possibilities of life through a careful and deliberate mixing of cosmic and spiritual energies.
The festival of Holi is one of gay abandon—where people from all over are welcome to laugh, play and share in the festivities. The free and deliberate intermixing of energy through the free and deliberate intermixing of life is the essence of Holi.
Holi marks the onset of that joyous time of year where life is liberated from the cold, oppressive cover of winter—a time of joy, love and emancipation.
Nature expresses the onset of each spring with a vast outpouring of vitality and it is the vitality of life’s eternal and unending, although forever evolving source that directs each life form in tandem with the change in season. And, just as spring symbolizes a discarding of the old and worn out, LOVE CHANGE™ hope to symbolizes a discarding of the wasteful, archaic and selfish practices propagated by the fashion industry.
We, the team of LOVE CHANGE™ hope that this Holi symbolizes the ushering in of an era of responsible fashion and responsible consumption so that all life on earth can bask in a cheery and positive new season full of joy, positive change and most of all—LOVE!
The average life form lives through systems. Animals migrate, hibernate and procreate based on natural “laws” which are followed through instinct. Therefore, it is safe to imply that it is instinctive for humans, too, to follow set patterns in life. To follow the rules without question or reason is how the world survives and, arguably, thrives. The planet rotates and revolves, day after day. We KNOW, that the sun will rise, the moon will shine and the clouds will rain. This is all we know and this is all we wish to know. That is the natural order of everything. What we don’t see, or wish to acknowledge, is that this dynamic system is independent of the life forms that have come to treat it as the gospel of truth. It is a dynamic system that operates intrinsically for and of itself, alone, and has the ability to change when it sees fit, without consultation or regard for the creatures living and thriving on it.
The “survival of the fittest” theory defines the “fittest” as the most “adaptable”. Nature insists we constantly adapt to it and in our attempt to understand and assimilate this fact, we have tried and quite ingeniously managed to create static rules for a dynamic system. The concept itself is a bit of an oxymoron, but we believe it works because we have harnessed the power of “predictability” and it is predictability, therefore, that is most valued in all the major governing systems we see around us. Being unpredictable, while exciting and intriguing, is not a favored quality in any system—human or mechanical. The essential unpredictable nature of change, therefore, makes it an uncomfortable concept.
Change, therefore, is not always good—not immediately, anyway.
Change, when un-tempered with purpose, can be devastating. This is another truth we are all instinctively aware of—through history—personal and acquired. This is one of the primary reasons why, instinctively, most people are averse to change—not because we lack purpose, but because us ordinary folk have been convinced that purpose is an esoteric concept and is hard to articulate—to both others and ourselves. At best, we can describe our aim and hope our described “aim” is in the same zone as the purpose we feel.
It is because of this that we find comfort in order. An orderly life, lived within the external framework of job, payday and consumption allows us to gain the various advantages our civilization has to offer us. However, this routine is empty. Life demands more.
As conscious beings, our daily routine needs to follow conscious thoughts and actions and it is because of this consciousness that any change we wish to make is inherently based out of purpose—a purpose to adapt and perhaps, to improve.
This, too, is the purpose of LOVE CHANGE™.
Our name signifies our inherent desire to improve not only our daily experience but ourselves as well. As a company based out of a developing nation, we have had the painful opportunity to witness, first hand, the utter devastation unbridled and un-tempered change can impose to our surroundings and our environment. Our country has witnessed a “consumerism explosion” over the past two decades. To top this sad fact and to feed our growing economy and acquired consumerist behavior, we have begun to compete with our neighbors and are trying to become a production hub for the world. All this has come at a grave cost to our environment. Our cities are polluted beyond measure, our rivers, once the lifelines of our great and rich culture, have been reduced to drains. Our forests are being leveled to meet our land requirements for the non-stop cultivation of cash crops that are spun faster and faster into industrial fabrics which are then dyed using poisonous chemicals which are harmful to the wearer and continue to cause pollution throughout their life-time, which, due to fast fashion, is extremely short lived in a wardrobe. This situation is an undeniable example of change lacking conscious purpose. Change for the purpose of change is an expression of discontentment with what you have or perhaps just of boredom. To love change for the sake of change alone is incomplete. Change, in itself, cannot have value—neither personal nor cultural.
Change gains value when it is the result of the pursuit of a purpose and the pursuit driving the purpose of LOVE CHANGE™ is creating timeless and enduring designs for the conscious wearer. Each design is intended to become an heirloom—to be preserved with care and love. Our fabrics are robust and low maintenance. They are built to last and are designed so that the wearer can maintain them with ease. Our purpose is to remind the world that great looking clothes are great not only because of the way they look and feel, but also because of their inherent longevity. For full disclosure, we must admit, each garment you purchase will last a you a very long time, so be patient with it—or not. Either way, our clothes are here to stay in your wardrobe and your memory as a reminder that great things do come at a cost, but that cost does not need to be detrimental to the environment.