We had the good fortune of connecting with Claire Powers and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Claire, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
The thought process behind creating KINdom was actually influenced by hormones. 🙂 I had just given birth, and instead of going back into the arms of fast fashion (where I’ve been designing for a couple of decades), I struggled with the decision of continuing to pollute and contribute to a bad environment for my child to grow up in, or choose to do better and start a sustainable, slow fashion brand of my own. I chose the latter!

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?

KINDOM is a sustainable and ethical apparel and accessories brand. Because humanity and the environment – or people and planet – are made of the same building blocks or elements of the universe, we are connected. We are all related. We are KIN. Utmost respect to the environment and humanity is at the forefront of each business practice and process of KINDOM – conscious of the way things are sourced, made, and who makes them, in order to preserve and perpetuate a better world for all. It wasn’t easy to get to where KINdom is today. KINdom is actually my second sustainable brand, the first of which started in 2007, but didn’t fully manifest due to the economic crash of 2008. It’s still not easy now, not only due to the pandemic, but because sustainability is essentially is in its early stages. We are still in the early adopters stage, not reaching majority yet, so costs are still relatively high when it comes to sustainable products & practices while comprehension is still not ubiquitous. Awareness & education need to continue in order to grow a very promising & potential market. The challenges I’ve met are overcome with consistency & persistence. Our mission and business model aligns with the values of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, and we satisfy up to 15 out of the 17 Goals with some of our products. That is both our work ethic and our moral compass. If there is a question on a material, a process, or a project, we only have to look to The Goals for guidance.

There are always lessons learned, as in the case of any business. First of all, always think out of the box, it will help you be innovative. For instance, because sustainability is not yet common in many industries, resources are few & far between. I had a difficult time looking for compostable poly packaging bags with my specifications because I refused to pack my products in single-use poly bags, so I had to go to a dog poop bag manufacturer to create one! Also, it’s always good to keep an open mind, stay humble, and surround yourself with advisors and mentors along the way. With the experience and collaboration of a good team – with a combined knowledge of 70 years in the garment business – at least those lessons are minimized, which has enabled KINdom to thrive in this current climate. I’m just a simple Mom with a desire to make the world a better place for my little spawn and for future generations. We are all made of the same elements as the sun, moon, stars, plants, trees, animals – just put together differently. Regardless of species, race, color, gender, age, religion, we are essentially the same. The sooner we are conscious of this, and the sooner we realize we are connected & that we are all KIN, the sooner we can start making a positive impact to each other and the world around us.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?

If you asked me this a few years ago, I would immediately say Hollywood, Disneyland, Rodeo Drive, and the usual tourist spots. But times have changed, and it’s more exciting for me these days to go on paths not commonly taken. If my best friend was visiting for the first time, I would take them to check out the peacocks and have a picnic at LA Arboretum, get lost among the trees at Descanso Gardens, and/or explore the Japanese Garden & Chinese Garden at Huntington Botanical Gardens. Part of the trip would be an evening visit to Griffith Observatory and be in awe at the city lights, and more in awe of the stars above from looking through the Zeiss telescope. For local eats and unique Mom-and-Pop shops, local main streets are best to explore, like York Boulevard in Highland Park, Mission Street in South Pasadena, Honolulu Avenue in Montrose, Pine Avenue in Long Beach, Downtown Manhattan Beach, etc. Almost every suburb has a main street, which are more interesting to discover. For culture & activities, Los Angeles museums are the best, like Jazz at the LACMA, the American Indian Arts Marketplace at the Autry Museum, or simply gawking at the bling-blings in the darkness of the Gem & Mineral Hall of the Natural History Museum.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
There is an ancient Iroquois philosophy that states: “In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations.” I dedicate my story to all those who have come before me who influence me, the indigenous groups all over the world who are continuing to live in harmony with the planet and all living things. I also dedicate this to my little one, who continually inspire me to do the best I can and make the world a better place for future generations.

Website: https://www.kindomshop.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kindomshop/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/kindomproject
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kindomproject/

Image Credits
Left to right, from the top: Photo 1: Dylan Perlot Photo 2: Allegra de Leon Delli Photo 3: Joshua Day Photo 4: Dylan Perlot Photo 5: Dylan Perlot Photo 6: Dylan Perlot Photo 7: Dylan Perlot Photo 8: Dylan Perlot

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