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  • Put Your Money Where Your Beliefs Are

    September 29, 2013 I was honored to be a guest blogger on www.blackdogasana.com. Here is a reprint of the blog.

    Beckons Yoga Clothing Spending Money BlogDame Julie Andrews (yes, from the Sound of Music), in a recent graduation speech at the University of Colorado, asked the college graduates to not only do random acts of kindness, but also do very deliberate acts of kindness, ones that represent their belief system and values. This involves some soul-searching and researching to find the best place to give your time and money so your actions match your value system. Such mindfulness applies to the way you spend, as well as donate, your money everyday. Each dollar spent strengthens the company you give it to. It is essential that we make our spending count.

    One positive outcome of the recent downturn of the economy has been that people are making careful decisions about how they spend money. More people are intentionally spending money and supporting businesses that represent their values. Likewise, more companies are recognizing the need to stand for something and give back. For instance, apparel company All Saints supports an initiative to fight human trafficking and end modern day slavery. Prana Clothing supports a myriad of initiatives including helping entrepreneurs find a market for their technology. Tom’s shoes donates one pair of shoes for every pair sold.

    Define what is important to you, do some research, and buy products from companies that support those same beliefs, be it products that are made in America or companies who support cancer research. One great resource for researching businesses trying to make a difference is Greenamerica.org’s Responsible Shopper page.

    Make your dollar count by spending it with intention.

    At Beckons Yoga Clothing, we try to make a difference by manufacturing in Colorado, where we live and work, creating jobs in our community. We use organic cotton and other sustainable fibers in our garments. We donate clothing each season to several worthy causes. We strive to leave the smallest environmental footprint possible. All the while, creating super comfortable, flattering and multi-purpose clothing for yoga and the lifestyle surrounding it.
  • The Business of Fast Fashion Video

    Click here to watch: The Business of Fast Fashion Video.

    Created by OnlineMBA.com, this short video about the growing business of fast fashion takes a critical look at how disposable clothing impacts the fashion industry as a whole.

    Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of American Vogue, credits Zara, the world's largest fast fashion retailer, for creating a "seasonless cycle for fashion." Brands such as Zara, H&M, Forever 21, and Topshop have taken catwalk fashion and brought it to the masses quickly and cheaply. Who can resist? Even loyal high-end customers have started mixing trendy, inexpensive pieces with their luxury brands. These fast fashion brands are creating disposable fashion. If you are only paying $20 for a pair of pants and you only wear them once, that seems to be OK. In fact, that is what fast fashion is all about.

    That is not OK with us. At Beckons, we are proud to be a part of the "slow fashion" movement. Talented sewers in Colorado make our clothing, we drive a short distance to work with them and pick up our clothing when it is ready. We build our products to last in both durability and styling. We all want to look good and feel good. We believe it is not trendy merchandise that makes this happen. Our priority is good design that flatters your figure and good quality fabric and construction that last a long time. Our products are more expensive because you are paying Americans to create great quality products that you can feel good about. Thanks, Zoe Gray and your team of researchers for producing this thought provoking video.

  • 150 Writing Prompts for Self-Discovery

    On a Journey Journal by BeckonsBy Becky Prater

    When I was in high school, I met a great man named Dr. Earl Reum. Dr. Reum gave inspirational speeches at schools and leadership events, impacting people at this critical juncture in their lives. I was intrigued by what he said and diligently went through the workbook he handed out, filled with self-discovery questions. The things he said perfectly matched what I knew to be true and the process of writing, based on the self-discovery prompts he provided, changed my life. I now realize that I can trace my confidence and path in life, back to the personal writing work he inspired and nuggets of advice he shared, including the following:

    “Wishing will not bring success, but planning, persistence and burning desire will accomplish anything.” —SUCCESS by Barbara Smallwood & Steve Kilborn, 1981.

    Through his self-discovery writing prompts, I defined my self. I developed a great appreciation for who I was and clarified what I wanted to do with my life. Not that my life has been constantly glorious since, but that process sure helped. People can do this at any stage of life and revisit the self-discovery process many times through out life. We are constantly changing and getting better so how a person answered these questions at 17 is very different from how one would at 47.

    Now, it is time for you to begin writing. Write about yourself. It is you who identifies who you are and where you want to go with your life. No matter where you have been, who you grew up with, what your circumstances are or were, it is YOU who can stand strong and move forward any way you choose. Identify your dream or perfect life; write it down and define it physically, and then spread the word about your new self and intention. Really own it. Define. Refine. Move. Announce. Continue reading

  • Journal Writing for Beginners

    Beckons Yoga Clothing journal writing blogWhen I was in 6th grade, my "boyfriend," Bob, gave me a diary with a key and birds on it. Adorable! I loved it and promptly began writing about all my troubles. Imagine what they must have been back then. Here is my first entry:

    "January 1, 1979. Today was a pretty bad day. My grandparents had to leave and my dad has been yelling at me all day. I can't wait until Monday 'cause school starts again."

    Forty-six journals later, I am still writing. Just so you know, my dad is fantastic, and some years I went through more than one journal. Writing has been my method of working through ideas, problems, decisions, and challenges throughout my life. There are many ways to work through life's challenges and decisions but this is a no-cost method that tends to not offend anyone, provided no one else reads it (remember Bridget Jones and Mr. Darcy?) Below is a short list of reason to write.

    Twelve reasons to journal:

    Continue reading

  • Feel Beautiful in Your Clothing

    Subconsciously we grab clothes out of our closet that make us feel good. It might be the color of the garment or the soft feeling of the fabric that draws us in. Perhaps we have something important to do that requires us to look business professional and one particular suit and blouse combination always makes us feel our best. With just a bit of thought we can make this a conscious effort and start off with a clear intention of feeling beautiful each day.

    Tamar Ares, founder of Sitting With Souls, believes if we ask our BODY each day what it wants to wear and then take a moment to listen, we will experience a more fulfilling day wearing what is best for the upcoming day.  Give it a try and see what happens.

    Perhaps you feel you have no sense of style? Feeling beautiful in your clothing creates your style. It doesn't have anything to do with whether other people like what you are wearing, if it follows the latest trend or cost you a lot of money. Only you have to like it and feel gorgeous in it.

    It is difficult to put a finger on what makes the perfect piece of clothing. It is seldom the newest, trendy item you just purchased. Most often it is the black tank top that goes with everything or the Audrey Hepburn style black ankle skimmer that puts a skip in your step. These perfect pieces enhance your good parts and provide the backdrop for other pieces in your wardrobe.

    Tamar recommends asking this when deciding whether to purchase something or not, "Will you bring abundance to my life?" Then, give yourself a moment to feel/hear/understand the answer. It may take a bit to get this technique down, but it is worth trying to see how this changes things in your life.

    I have always recommended not buying anything unless it is the best darn thing you have seen and you cannot imagine living without it. One of my favorite purchases is a short pink ruffled skirt that I found on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles some years back for $29.99. There are a plethora of stores on Melrose all selling the same cheap LA trendy merchandise. I had just proclaimed to my fellow travelers, as I often do, not to buy anything unless it is perfect. Thank goodness I happened to fall upon this fantastic skirt or I would have gone home from my trip empty handed. You can see that it has been the inspiration for many ruffle-y garments since. It was the perfect thing.
    Imagine if you only purchased the garments that are perfect and make you feel beautiful. Why not? This should save you money and create a wardrobe that makes you feel great each day.

  • Living With Intention

    Beckons Yoga Clothing Living With IntentionBy Becky Prater

    As seen on www.mylocalhealth.com/total_fitness/living_with_intention

    We beckon things to our life through our thoughts, actions and intention. If we set specific intentions for our day, year, finances, career, partnership, or life, think about it and act on it, we are more likely to experience that reality. Motivational speaker and author Wayne Dyer agrees, “Our intention creates our reality.” The process involves taking focused time to come up with a plan and set an intention. It's my belief that life spent with intention is a far more satisfying journey. When we begin our day anticipating joy, abundance, and love—that is what we receive. Continue reading

  • Elizabeth Jefferson in Beckons Yoga Clothing

    Thank you, Elizabeth, for sharing these great shots of you wearing Beckons. You make us proud. Elizabeth is on the Pilates reformer at Zoom Pilates and Fitness Studio .

    Elizabeth Jefferson in Beckons organic cotton yoga clothingElizabeth Jefferson is a fitness professional working in the San Diego area. She is a certified Pilates instructor with the PhysicalMind Institute and was certified in yoga at the White Lotus Foundation.  In addition to her Pilates and personal training sessions, she also teaches yoga, mat Pilates, aqua fitness, indoor cycling, Zumba, circuit, and total body conditioning classes. This spring she has been busy running half marathons and mastering kettle bell training. In the photo below, Elizabeth is wearing the Beckons Strength Reversible Bra in the black/watermelon and the Love Yoga Shorts in black.

    Monique Feil was her photographer.
    Elizabeth Jefferson in Beckons organic cotton yoga clothing

  • Beckons Adds Malas to the Tool Kit

     

    Beckons yoga clothing carnelian malasWe have recently added seven chakra malas to our Beckons tool kit. At Beckons we believe color, words, stones, and clothing can be used as tools to improve our lives. To read more about using color as a tool for self improvement, click here.

    Sarita, a Nepalese craftswoman, living in Denver, CO has made these beautiful malas for us, based on our desire to have one that represents each of the seven chakras. It is our hope that you will use these to support the chakra that corresponds to the area in your life you want to stimulate.

    We will present a series of blog posts that talk about each of the chakras and how the stones and color of the 108 bead malas can support the chakras.

    If you are not familiar with malas, a mala is a set of beads commonly used by Hindus, Buddhists and yogis of all religions when meditating, usually made from 108 beads. Malas are used for keeping count while reciting, chanting, praying or mentally repeating a mantra (meaningful phrase of intention) so that one can focus on the meaning or sound of the mantra rather than counting its repetitions.

    Malas are typically made from seeds, wood, bone or semi precious stones. We have chosen to use semi-precious stones to beckon the healing energy of the stones to ourselves. We have created one mala for each of the Chakras so that each person can choose the mala that corresponds to the area of the body that needs support.

    When mediating, one mantra repetition is said for each bead while turning the thumb clockwise around each bead. When arriving at the head bead or guru bead, one turns the mala around and then goes back in the opposite direction.

    Beckons yoga clothing carnelian malasWhen not meditating you can wear the malas on our wrists like a bracelet or around your neck like a long necklace, currently trending now due to Downton Abbey's popularity and presentation of early 20th century fashion. We also use them to stimulate an area of our home or workspace to bring change. For instance, if you place the mala intentionally in the far left corner of your office or home, this will activate wealth energy—we can all use this. If you are interested in activating the love energy of your life, place a mala in the far right corner of your bedroom or home.
    beckons yoga clothing seven malasWhy 108 beads? There are many explanations. The number 108 is sacred in many religions. Swami Muktananda explains it perfectly, as presented by destinationom.com, when describing the heart as the source of the infinite and our connection with the divine and God. From the heart there are 108 MAIN nadis (veins) that go from the heart to all the extrimeties and after reciting a mantra 108 times you have purified your body. Go here for more reasons http://www.swamij.com/108.htm.

  • 5 Ways to Show Someone They Are Special

    By Becky Prater

    Beckons Yoga Clothing You Rock blogIn 1972, Leo Buscaglia, an author and man I deeply admire, published a small book called Love. In 1984, I read Love, my first self-help book, and have lived by Buscaglia's ideas of love ever since.

    He writes, "It is possible for me, and not unreasonable, to love everyone with equal intensity and still have all the love energy I have ever had. There are a lot of miracles to being a human being, but this is one of the greatest miracles." (Love, 1972). Meaning, you can love all people and never run out of love or the capacity to love.

    February is the month to show people that you appreciate them and that they are special in some way. Here are a few suggestions on how to do that without spending much money: Beckon Yoga Clothing Hearts of Wool

    Beckons Yoga clothing hearts of wool blog post1. Make 3-D hearts out of old clothing. My super talented intern, Maggie Aldworth, created these hearts from old clothes headed for the Goodwill, which she plans to give to each of her friends at school. You can fill them with lavender to be used as a sachet. These will help their high school backpacks smell great.

    2. Write a note to someone special that is about the love of or importance of their friendship or support. Remind them how wonderful they are and thank them for their positive, supportive attitude. People do not send cards or letters in the mail much these days. Sending a note via snail mail will have a significant impact.

    3. As in the first photo, find a rock (it does not have to be in the shape of a heart) and on it write "you rock," using a Sharpie. Place the rock somewhere your loved one will find it on Valentine's Day morning. If you are going to mail it, just use a flat rock. Who wouldn't love to get that in the mail?

    4. Celebrate by putting a chocolate heart (a wee bit materialistic) on your child's pillow so that they find it when they go to bed that night or in the mailboxes or on desks at work. Teachers do this stuff all the time. I can assure you there is not a place of business where people wouldn't be thrilled to receive the tiniest reminder that they are special.

    5. On a piece of notebook paper, hand write:

    You are special because . . . (fill in this blank).

    That's it. You do not even need to include your name. Just make someone's day by acknowledging them in this small, personal, thoughtful way. Even those people who might not be your favorite in the workplace have some redeeming quality you can celebrate on this special day.

    "I have a very strong feeling that the opposite of love is not hate, it is apathy," states Buscaglia (Love, 1972.) It seems like we are apathetic about others because we are so busy all the time. A simple act of kindness will remind people that we are grateful they are in our lives.

    "What good is love that is not freely given? Love is always an active sharing. If one has love to give, he may impart it to all in the world and he will still have the same love he started with. We never lose anything by sharing it, for nothing is ever solely ours to start with. In fact, love acquires meaning only if it is shared." (Love, 1972)

    Does this seem impossible to you or very unlikely that you will reach out to people in this way? When times are tough and we get frustrated with our lives, this may be the last thing we want to do. However, by sharing love with others we tend to feel much better ourselves. Just do this for one person in your life and see what happens.

  • Lines and Circle: An Update on The Samburu Donation

    Last year Beckons donated clothing to the Samburu People of Northern Kenya by way of Vital Yoga of Denver. They are a colorful group of nomadic people. Here is a piece written by Micah Springer, who hand-carried our boxes of clothes to Africa, about distributing the clothing to the people. This is beautiful and we are touched to have been a part of it. If you want to know more of the back story, read our previous blog.

    Samburu Tribe Penina and childrenLines and Circles by Micah Springer

    Lepakiyo, the leader of this tribe of Samburu People, is masterful at requiring the villagers to gather in a line. To you and me this is a simple formation because we were taught early, as children. Nomadic people are anything but linear. They don't stand in lines, speak in lines, think in linear fashion. The creativity we recognize in their character is a direct tribute to this fact. Continue reading

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