I’m Kasi. I created The Peahen to bring journalistic standards back to fashion.
There’s been a slow but pernicious breakdown of journalism in America over the past decades that have manifested into an all-out breakdown today. First, it was click bate and the fastification of news. Then it morphed into fake news. The central issue is that we no longer have trusted experts guiding our conversations and leading us to universal truths – be they around politics, culture, daily matters, or an amalgamation of all these things and more.
This gets us hyperpolarization – in both views and actions. More often, we see extreme advocacy or totally disengagement.
So how does this relate to fashion? We’ve long treated clothes as a superficiality. They are something to be consumed to make us feel better. Today’s polarization and media culture have exacerbated this problem. Enabled by sophisticated technology and social media, the fashion industry exploits our vulnerabilities and makes thoughtless and wasteful decisions the norm.
When we’re informed, we’re connected, compassionate, and conscious. I created The Peahen to bring critical conversation back to fashion through opinions, investigations, and guides. I’ll enlighten but never judge. I hope you come for style and stay for sustainability.
I’m Here For It
An ever-evolving list of topics fit to print here…
- Fashion as art
- Fashion as employment (when it pays a living wage!)
- Fashion as a creator of and commentator on culture
- Fashion technology and innovation
- Corporate accountability and transparency
- Regeneration and circularity
- Womxn and raising their voices, all over the world!
- Preservation of artisan traditions
- Humor for advocacy endurance
- Words, word, words and their weight
- GOOD DESIGN
Pitch me if you write about these things and want to get published here.
What is a Peahen?
A Peahen is a name for a female peacock. ‘Peafowl,’ the official name for peacocks and peahens, flip traditional gender roles on their head. When you think of Peafowl, an image of the male probably pops into your head first. With that distinctive display of feathers, why wouldn’t it? These feathers work to the peacock’s advantage, helping him attract the more subtle peahen – who is brown like the earth. He does the flaunting, she does the choosing.
There’s a lot of power in this gender role reversal. The peahen gets to set her own, considered path.
I see the same parallel in fashion. Where a fashion victim follows trends, a conscious consumer asks questions. They make the decision instead of letting the decision pick them, just like the choosy Peahen. But questioning what you buy doesn’t mean you have to give up fashion entirely. It just means buying in a more informed way.
Fashion is a $1.2 trillion global industry that employes 1/6 of the world’s population, 80% of whom are women. So, no more casting it aside as frivolous. As modern consumers, we’re evolving to demand more. We want fashion to reflect our personal standards. We want it to be made to last. We want it to support, not hurt, makers. We want it to honor, not deplete, the earth.
This is where I can help. Starting here is the first step in an ongoing life journey with ethical style. And, personally, I’m happy you landed here!
If you’re new, these are good posts to get you started:
- A Guide on When to Shop, When to Not
- The Leather Label: What’s Ethical and What’s BS
- Responsible Alternatives to Reformation
- Is ‘Natural’ Actually More Sustainable?
- The Truth About H&M
Find a list of brands and designers I endorse on my Shopping Page.
What is Ethical Fashion?
As the ‘ethical’ industry evolves, the vocabulary is being created around it quite literally as a I type this. For today, I treat ethical fashion as the bucket term that encapsulates other, more specific ones like:
- Sustainable fashion
- Conscious fashion
- Artisan fashion
- Fair trade fashion
- Transparent fashion
- Vegan fashion
- Zero-waste fashion
- Regenerative fashion
- Circular fashion
The main reason a bucket term is needed is is because no fashion brand can be ALL THESE THINGS. Most start with one and expand slowly from there. It’s rare to see them tackle more than three. Also, ethics is a vast field that’s open to interpretation and contribution. That’s why I prefer ‘ethical’ instead of ‘conscious’ or ‘sustainable.’ Because it reflects the evolution of the field and your choice in the matter. So pick a few values that are most important to you and define your own ethical fashion.
What Else I Do
Head of Public Relations at Fair Trade USA, we’re more than just coffee & chocolate.
Editorial and Personal Eco-Stylist, Vintage Curator, book a consult or shopping session with me.
Co-Founder & Head of Creative for The Conscious Crowd, Austin’s first ethical fashion collective that unites international brands and shoppers for curated events, marketplaces, and learning experiences.
Two-time organizer and Southwest Regional Coordinator of Fashion Revolution, a global movement calling for greater transparency, sustainability, and ethics in the fashion industry.
Former Head of Membership for Ethical Writers & Creatives, a group of journalists, writers, and bloggers who seek to support and further ethical and sustainable living online and in print.