Briana Mendonz & Carly Brindley

HOW DID YOU IDENTIFY YOUR PASSION AND THE WORK THAT SATISFIED YOU VERSUS WORK THAT JUST PAID THE BILLS?

For us, pursuing our passion meant doing something that allowed us total creative freedom and the ability to be unapologetically ourselves, while pursuing a livelihood that complimented our devotion to self-care, family, and community. Peace of Style, at its core, is more than a clothing line – it’s an outlet for expressing ourselves, for raising awareness of critical social and environmental issues, and for shining a light on other artists, dreamers, and entrepreneurs in our area, who are making a positive impact by doing what they love. Prior to starting the line, there was a very definitive line drawn between work and play. Peace of Style, however, feels like a little bit of both, because the connections we are making with other women, combined with how much fun we have working together, feels more like self care than it does sacrifice.

FOR YOU PERSONALLY, WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FEMINISM AND EMPOWERMENT?

Feminism is more of a campaign – a social movement and politically/economically driven advocacy for the equal rights of women that relies on female empowerment and the support of both women and men to advance. Empowerment is more personal. While the seeds of it ( ie: opportunity, advocacy, authority, resources) are planted communally, empowerment flourishes within. It is that voice inside of us that reassures us that we are capable enough, strong enough, and resilient enough, which leads us to truly believe in equality, and to nurture the seeds of empowerment that are used to propagate feminism.

HOW DOES SOCIETY REINFORCE THE IDEA WE, AS WOMEN, ARE NOT ENOUGH AND HOW CAN WE TAKE THAT POWER BACK?

Well, for one, the majority of advertising to which we’re exposed capitalizes on making women feel “less than” or “lacking of”. It attempts to convince us that, with the right clothes, appliances, hair, accessories –  basically, with the right improvements, and a commitment to investing in products that fix our “flaws,” that we can measure up, feel better about ourselves, and be taken more seriously. It breeds competitiveness, discrimination, and self-doubt; simply because content, confident, and impartial people aren’t profitable consumers. That, combined with a myriad of deep-seated, patriarchal constructs, historically woven into the fabric of our society, have long attempted to make women feel inadequate. Taking the power back means discrediting the notion that we require alterations in order to fully wield our potential, or that our worth is dependent on the acceptance of others. We can harness power by acknowledging that every woman’s story has value, defending the dignity of others, and by practicing self-love/respect.  

HOW DO YOU OVERCOME THE TENDENCY TO DISCREDIT COMPLIMENTS YOU ARE GIVEN?

Goodness, this one is a struggle. I’m still working on that. lol Generally I’ll find a way to compliment them back immediately, because I’m afraid that fully acknowledging the compliment will infringe upon my humility. Other times I’ll make a joke or find a way to debase my abilities in some way. Thanks, Tribe, for the challenge – I’ll definitely be working to find more self-honoring ways to improve upon this.

WHY IS THE TRIBE MOVEMENT IMPORTANT?

Because women are important. Because authentic, affirming connections are important. And because it’s about damn time we realize that our efforts, our successes, AND our scars are all characteristic of our resilience, and equally worthy of celebration.

Occupation: Briana Occupation - Copyeditor, Preschool Teacher, Work at home mom of 2 male wild things, business owner of Peace of Style apparel. Carly Occupation - Co-owner of Peace of Style and a Personal Trainer, Mom to be.

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Instagram: peaceof_style