I have always worked in men’s fashion. It has been 20+ years working in this industry. I love that I am in the very heart of NYC where it all happens. I could not have imagined myself anywhere else. My first responsibilities were in design and merchandising, where I would travel to the best weaving mills in the world and work with talented artists and designers to create beautiful fabrics for men’s fashion. I was taken under the wings of many talented people over the years, I loved every moment of it and course was grateful. That is when the obsession came into my life with travel, different cultures, the latest fashion, style, gastronomy, cinema, reading, and of course all things textile and color related.
I felt my horizons were opening, and I started to believe that life had no limits. I became somewhat of a dreamer, but continued to work very hard everyday. My job and career were extremely important to me and on one of my trips to Germany I met my husband. I knew immediately that he was the one. We got married in Madrid and immediately settled down in NYC.
Over the years as my career grew I always wondered if there would be something else I would incorporate into everyday life that would add another dimension to our new life together. There had to be something else. We tried a few new ventures on the side of our regular jobs, but it wasn’t until a trip to India that something was changing inside me. My husband & I knew that we could do something to help the suffering children in the world. But how to start and what to actually focus on?
Trips to India were becoming more regular. They were inspiring, and daunting that the same time. We started getting involved with a particular girls home in Kolkata and our thoughts were flying with ideas.
I definitely went through a change at this point in my life. My husband had already been exposed to this type of poverty as a young boy, living in Libya for a few years as a child. I only knew what I saw on TV when they would show stories on Mother Teresa or when I was asked by my teachers to go door to door with the unicef boxes and collect money for poor children.
But to actually go to Kolkata, to be a part of it and actually develop friendships with locals, go to their homes & see how they live, you start to wonder how life is so different on the other side of the world. My life in NYC with my husband was a speck of sand in the universe. There was so much more than our tiny little circle. I realized it was only by chance that I happened to be born in NY. What if I was born in Kolkata? Would I be a beggar in the street? Would I be working in a brothel? Would I be carrying water every day instead of going to school? Or even married at age 15? Well I thought if I was a young girl living in Kolkata I would hope and pray that I would be lucky enough to meet nice people who would given me a chance to succeed. I imagined someone teaching me fashion and giving me the opportunity to work. What if I was dreaming to have my own hair salon? I would hope that someone would come along, believe in me and invest in me. So, we said “why not”?
All the gender inequalities we have seen are “NOT OK”, so why not try to make it ok. Let’s just start one girl at a time and see where it takes us. Now we have Girl2B and we could not be more grateful each and every day.
This is a great post! I learned something new about you..
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Wow, Christine….You are a writer. truly inspiring!!!!!