Found

Found
While scrolling through my Instagram feed yesterday, I saw this photo of Liya Kebede, founder of LemLem in a fantastic dress and thought to myself… there it is. My found item for the week. The color, simple lines and versatility… a great summer piece. I was quite pleased to find out, after a bit of research, that this dress was designed by LemLem for the exclusive Vogue + Born Free Collaboration, which includes fashion pieces from 22 top designers (including LemLem, Tory Burch, Prada, Carolina Herrera, and Isabel Marant) that are available for purchase on Shopbop. 100% of the profits from this collection will go toward Born Free’s mission to end mother-to-child HIV transmission at birth. Shopping for a cause always make me feel good. Take a look at the collection. Beautiful pieces indeed.

And can I just say, Liya and her company. Inspiring. A supermodel, actress and former World Health Organization’s Goodwill Ambassador for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health, Liya founded Lemlem in 2007 as a way to inspire economic independence in her native country of Ethiopia after learning that the craft of weaving was fading away. By designing beautiful woven tops, beach cover-ups and dresses, Liya is not only preserving the art of weaving but helping those in her native country to be financially independent and successful. Doing good by doing well. So good.

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Inspired

Toms
As you know, I’ve been thinking quite a bit about what’s next for me. This discernment process has been fun. Am I a city girl? Am I an island girl? Do I miss a “desk” job? Can my passions really be my vocation? What motivates me to get up in the morning? You know, all those important life questions. While my path is slowly revealing itself to me, I have realized one very important thing. I want my work to impact the lives of others. Corporate Social Responsibility is something I am passionate about as I do believe you can do well (from a financial perspective) by doing good.

A company I’m constantly inspired by is TOMS. I received their Spring 2014 Vagabond Journal in the mail earlier this week and thought, now there’s a company I want to be a part of. After visiting a village in Argentina in 2006, Blake Mycoskie was struck by the fact that children around the world were without shoes. So, he created a simple but life changing business model: for every pair of shoes purchased, a pair would be donated to a child in need. One for One.® Realizing that his approach could serve other global needs, Blake launched TOMS Eyewear in 2011 to help restore sight to persons in need with every purchase of sunglasses and optical frames. And just this year, Blake launched TOMS Roasting Co. with the mission to provide clean water to developing communities with the purchase of premium coffee. Are you inspired yet? I am!

In addition, last year he launched an online marketplace accessible from his site to highlight global commerce. In his words “We believe commerce can be about more than just profits. But it takes more than a belief to make this a reality. So we’ve created a platform on our site to help other social entrepreneurs succeed and build momentum for this way of doing business. Welcome to The Marketplace. This is bigger than us.” Just look at some of the offerings: these earrings, this bracelet, and just look at this hammock. This may just be my new go-to site for all things gifts.

And let’s be honest. I am obsessed with my classic TOMS. I think I have gone through 3 pairs in the last 2 years alone. Jonathan Adler recently teamed up with TOMS to launch a terrific and eye-catching spring line. Check them out here.

Blake reminds me of a very important lesson “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

Have a great weekend, sweet friends!

Awareness

breast cancer
I wish what I was about to write wasn’t true but sadly it is. This year, two very close friends of mine had relatives diagnosed with breast cancer. Fortunately, both had access to top-notch doctors, received exemplary care and an aggressive plan in place to fight. And fight they did. There is still a long road to recovery for both of these courageous women but I have much faith that they have long lives ahead of them.

Since I am a self-proclaimed shopper, I thought it was my duty to share with all of you some of the amazing products being sold this month with proceeds going directly towards breast cancer research. Here are just a few of my top picks:

– In my book, you can never have too many scarfs and this Stella and Dot number would be a great addition to any collection!

– Without fail, I always leave the house on a rainy day forgetting my umbrella and so I have decided to purchase this cute Tory Burch one to keep in my car always! As an added bonus, Tory Burch is donating 20% of the sales of this item (or up to $30,000) to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

– Looking for that perfect pink nail polish? Well, your search is over with OPI’s Pink of Hearts. Created exclusively for Susan G. Komen for the Cure, OPI has donated $25,000 to this worthy organization.

– Keeping with my beauty finds, I just love this Bobbi Brown blush set. Between this October and next March, Bobbi Brown will donate $10 from each sale of this set to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Click on the link and get yours today!

– New Balance has guaranteed a minimum donation of $500,000 each year to Susan G. Komen for the sales of their Lace Up for the Cure product line. If you are in need of some new kicks, I suggest the Komen 860.

– As I have mentioned before, I love candlelight and think this Marie Todd Heal candle is just lovely, especially since 30% of the sales will be donated to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

– Chan Luu’s Breast Cancer Awareness Stretch Bracelet would be a welcome addition to any arm candy. Ms. Luu will donate 50% of all sales of this bracelet to the Think Pink, Live Green Initiative.

– And saving one of my favorites for last, La Mer has created a limited edition hand treatment set. La Mer will donate $10 from each sale of this set to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Smooth hands and a great cause, you can’t go wrong.

So ladies (and gents), do a little shopping and know that your dollars are going to a worthy cause. And I know I am the worst at this, but do remember to do your own self exams. Early detection is key!