Road to Self Content

Self Content Co. was an idea that came to me on a random day. This was in the summer of 2020, while the entire world was shut down. During a time of uncertainty, turmoil, and stillness all at once, I felt compelled to finally initiate my life’s work. I was setting out to create a brand that provided a message that I could forever relate to. At this point, I knew that having a sustainable brand was the only way to go. Sustainability wasn’t something that I always had in mind as a fashion lover though. 

I was first introduced to sustainability from a content creator and now designer Kailee McKenzie back around 2014. She was the first person that broke down why thrifting is ultimately better for the environment when it comes to the impact of the fashion industry. When I started high school in 2015, I began thrifting and really found a love for it. I always wanted to wear things that other people didn’t have, so it became the perfect shopping experience. Attending a high school without a uniform allowed me to quickly develop my style and share my perspective on fashion. In tenth grade, my English teacher assigned us to write an eight-page research paper on any topic. I chose to write about fast fashion because it was still a new subject for me, and this was the perfect opportunity to learn more. In retrospect, this assignment is the reason why I am where I am now. Writing this paper, I only scratched the surface of fast fashion, focusing on what the largest issues are and what can be done to reverse them. This research opened my eyes to water pollution, carbon emissions, unfair labor practices, fabrics, etc., and I still hadn’t made a dent in this topic. I felt disgusted afterwards though. I went home and donated a bunch of my clothes from fast fashion retailers, and I vowed to never shop with them again. Over time, I crafted my closet to be a majority of thrifted pieces. I felt better about my place in fashion, and I knew it could only go up from there. I dedicated my time to learning more about sustainable fashion and sharing this information with anyone that would listen. I knew that if people received specific information about how their favorite stores operate, they would at least be inspired to make some changes. After that research paper, I decided to use any opportunity in school to educate my peers and teachers on a new facet of a subject that I love. Any time we could choose a topic for an assignment, I would make it about fast fashion. I felt like that was the most responsible thing I could do, especially because I was known as the fashion girl. I took this time to learn as much as I could about sustainable fashion because I knew that I would eventually have my own brand. I started paying close attention to what materials and methods sustainable brands were using, mentally and physically taking notes for the future. It took about six years of research, understanding, trial, error, experiences, and solitude to even have an idea of what the brand would become in my life. As I look back, I understand that I had to fully embody the message that I wanted to become my future. 

On a random day in June during quarantine, I walked outside with a pen and my sketchbook and sat out front. I told myself that I would not go back inside until I came up with a tee shirt idea. I asked myself what I wanted for myself, how I wanted to feel, and “self content” came to my mind. That was the only goal. Throughout my adolescent years, I battled with myself a lot based on outside influences and judgements, so being happy with myself was a genuine aspiration. I wrote it a few times, I came up with some colorways, and I found a sustainable tee shirt manufacturer. 

I am grateful for my journey to the present because each step was crucial. If I never was a geek for fashion, I wouldn’t have found Kailee. If I wasn’t assigned that research paper, I might have been ignorant to this topic for who knows how long. The key message is to identify the things in life that you can’t stay away from — the things that make you feel worth your time here. Once you identify them, embody those qualities, mindsets, skill sets, etc. in your daily life until they manifest into their full potential.