Friendly Friday: FIGS

For years, medical professionals have been subjected to wearing uniforms of lesser quality all around. FIGS recognized that and decided to take initiative. After communicating directly with medical communities, founders Trina Spear and Heather Hasson transformed clothing and uniforms for medical professionals.
This, however, isn't the only transformation they've made. FIGS has a threads for threads initiative, in that every single set of scrubs sold, FIGS gives a set to a healthcare provider in need. Little do many of us know, things as simple as a clean set of scrubs can reduce hospital-infection rates by 66%. To this date, FIGS has embraced that by donating over 75,000 sets of scrubs in 26 countries around the world.
Written with love and hope by
Nikita Ahuja
Summer 2015 Intern

Wildcard Wednesday: New Fall/Winter '15 Products!

ESPEROS has new products on our shelves for the Fall/Winter 2015 season and we want you all to check them out!

Great for the school year, the holidays, or just day to day life. Click on the labels to check them out!

 

 

 

Photo features the Galway Voyager, Harper Wayfarer Tote, and Langston Porter Brief.

All products are available for pre-order now and will ship August 1st!

Written with love and hope by

Nikita Ahuja

Summer 2015 Intern

 

Wildcard Wednesday: Tim's Bag

We have some cool interns over at ESPEROS. Look at what our Finance and Logistics Intern, Tim, crafted up on his classic backpack in his free time! (Ironically, he's probably the artsiest intern in the office).

Pretty cool, huh? 

 

Written with love and hope by

Nikita Ahuja

Summer 2015 Intern

Monday Muse: Jay Jennings

It's not everyday you get to meet a trumpet player as talented and handsome as Jay. He's a wonderful friend and we are excited to give you a peek into his life on the road and in NYC!
Are you an artists? Have you always considered yourself an artist? I have considered myself an artist ever since I started improvising.  Which began early on, around the age of 9 or 10. I play the trumpet and tour with Snarky Puppy Polyphonic Spree,  Eli "Paperboy" Reed, and Toby Keith. 
Where are you from? Where do you live now?
I am originally from Grapevine, TX. I am a musician/songwriter living in Brooklyn, NY. 
 
What does our slogan "carry hope" mean to you?

The slogan "carry hope" is inspiring to me.  It makes me stay positive about what Im doing.  Im pretty positive anyway, but this gives me an excuse to put inspiration and hope in other people minds and hearts.

What do you like most about your ESPEROS backpack?

I love how light weight the bag is but yet seems very durable. 

 

 

Jay on tour with Snarky Puppy outside in Copenhagen and at the Olympia in Paris
What inspires you? 

Music and art are inspiring to me obviously.  But watching some one you love do what they love is REALLY where its at!

In that case we feel like we can mention Jay's girlfriend Elizabeth Reid who is also an amazing artist. She is a real Jane-of-all-Trades and can make anything from 3-D figures to textile designs. 

 

Why do you think education is important? Do you think it always comes in the form of formal training? 

I think a formal education is important.  Although, there are certain things, especially in my line of work, that you can not learn in school.  there are many things that you are not able to learn in a school environment.  Its called life.

Do you have any hobbies, talents, near death experiences?

I love playing golf!  

My appendix burst when I was 15.

Is there a song you can't stop listening to?

I hardly ever listen to music.  Im serious.

You can follow Jay on instagram @yayennings . He is also a part of the Brooklyn Artist Collective BKLYN 1834.

Wildcard Wednesday: How we beach bum.

Here's what we are packing up to take to the beach this summer! What's in yours?!

Monday Muse: Margaux Brooke

Name: Margaux Brooke

Profession: Modeling
Agents: Wilhelmina - NY, LA, Miami // No Ties Management // Models 1 - London // Monster - Milan

Photograph by: Greg Swales

Passion, grace, and poise don't begin to describe the talent of today's Monday Muse, Margaux Brooke. She is effortlessly beautiful and talented at what she does; but even more, her words are incredibly encouraging to all who have the pleasure of hearing them. She has been just about all over the globe, yet still she seems to see excitement in the everyday. She's the kind of inspiration that keeps you going, even when the going gets tough. She's an artist, alright, and we had the pleasure of getting to know her--meet Margaux Brooke!

Hey Margaux, do you consider yourself an artist? What kind?

Definitely, I dabble in all different kinds of art. I would say I’m most well known for being a model. But I also enjoy drawing, acting, and writing, which is probably my most personal form of art.

How did you get your start?

I was 9 years old, living in Roswell, Georgia. One day my mom heard an ad on the radio for an agency looking for child models. She brought me in and the rest is history, as they say. I was never pressured into modeling. I genuinely loved it when I was little. They usually just dress you in your outfit and then tell you to have fun, and they capture some great photos from that. If only it were that easy now-a-days, haha!

Where do you live or where do you split your time between?

I would say my home is Los Angeles, or currently Orange County. I am planning to move to LA this summer, but really I am bi-coastal. I spend a few months out of the year in New York, which is my favorite city to work.  I also work in London, occasionally, which is always a fun time. I learn so much from my travels.

 

Where are you from?

This is an interesting question for me. I was born in Ventura, California, but I moved to Georgia when I was 2 years old and lived there until I was 11. Then I moved to Costa Rica from age 12-15, and then I moved back to California, where I have lived ever since. So all of my growing years were split between three different places. But I usually say I’m from Georgia, but identify my home as LA. 

                                                                                 Photograph By: Kristian Shuller


What/ who inspires you?

So many people inspire me, I don’t even know where to begin. My mom is my greatest inspiration. She provided such an amazing life for me, and did so as a single mom from the age 12 years old and on. I owe a great deal of my happiness to her. She got me into modeling, drove me to my castings until I was nearly 17, and always supported me. Coco Rocha is my modeling mentor, she’s taught me so much, mostly about how to deal with haters in this industry, and to be confident. She’s only a year older than me but has accomplished so much. I love her and her husband and now her new baby Ioni.  They’ve always been so kind to me and have remained my friends until this day. As far as a writing inspiration, I’m obsessed with Patti Smith, I could only dream of writing like she does. I feel so much when I read her words, and I hope to meet her one-day in the future. Other than that, I would just say life inspires me. I can be walking down the streets in NYC and feel all sorts of inspiration from the weather to the architecture to the people. Traveling is inspiring.

What does our slogan “Carry Hope” mean to you?

                                                                                     Photograph By: Ben Cope

I think it reminds me to never give up. Even when things seem impossible and hopeless, and you feel utterly lost in life or your work, there is always hope. Sometimes all it takes is patience and perseverance, other times it takes a lot of hard work, but I think as long as you keep fighting, there is hope.

 

Do you think education is important? Do you think it always has to come in the form of formal training?

Yes, I definitely think education is important, but no I am the last person to believe it comes in the form of formal training. Sure if you want to be a doctor, or a lawyer, you should go to school to get those degrees, but when it comes to art, I don’t think a formal degree is necessary. I’ve completed two years of college and I’m not sure if I will ever finish. I have been modeling, and working, and teaching myself so much about the fashion industry, marketing, and how to brand myself.  My dad asked me, “Where did you learn all this?” I told him, I taught myself. I think school can provide a great foundation, but sometimes you just need to learn on your own.

                                                                                     Photograph By: Jens Ingvarsson

Random hobbies???

Well writing is probably my biggest hobby. I’d love to write a novel one-day. It will probably be fiction, but for now, my writing is just for me. I also love online gaming, which I guess is pretty unorthodox for a model, or so I’ve been told. I play this game called League of Legends, super fun and addicting. But I’ve always been more of a tomboy.

Favorite song you are listening to?

Right now I’ve really been in to “Octa Hate” by Ryn Weaver. It’s a song about love, or rather, about losing love, which I’ve recently gone though myself, and I’m kind of on road to the recovery right now. So this song has kind of been my anthem. One day at a time right?

YES. One day at a time, absolutely. Thank you, Margaux, for carrying hope and caring enough about education to share your story with our readers.

Follow Margaux on Instagram @margauxbrooke , and on Tumblr http://margauxbrooke.tumblr.com. Especially if you are looking for some day-to-day inspiration, this girl has a gift.

How are you inspired? Share in the comments below. 

Happy Monday, everyone!

 

Written by Grace Mueller

Spring 2015 Intern

Friendly Friday: Malala Yousafzai

Malala was born on July 12th 1997, in Mingora, the Swat District of North West Pakistan. Fast forward to 2011, Malala received the first National Youth Peace Prize and was nominated for the International Children’s Peace Prize for her anonymous writing for the BBC blog expressing her views on education and life under the threat of the Taliban taking over the valley. The Taliban had banned television, music, women from shopping and women from being educated; Malala didn't think that was right. Malala believed that everyone, and every girl, should have the right to education. 

Only a year later, on October 9th 2012, a masked gunman entered Malala’s school bus and asked for Malala by name. She was shot with a single bullet that went through her head, neck and shoulder. Malala survived this horrible attack, but was in critical condition. 

Who gets individually attacked by the Taliban…and survives? An incredibly strong, courageous, brave, and powerful person. Someone who stands up for what they know is right, at all costs. Someone who believes that the world can and will be changed.  

Since her assassination attempt in 2012, over 2 million people have signed the Right to Education campaign, helping lead to the ratification of Pakisatan’s first right to education bill. Malala is now a global advocate for the millions of girls who are denied a formal education because of social, economic, legal and political factors. The Malala Fund brings awareness to the social and economic impact of girls’ education and to empower girls to raise their voices, to unlock their potential and to demand change. 

The Malala fund supports adolescent girls under threat of the Taliban in Pakistan, girls kidnapped or under threat of Boko Haram in Nigera, girls in Syrian refugee camps in Jordan and Lebanon, adolescent girls affected by the ebola crisis is Sierra Leone, adolescent girls learning technology skills in Kenya. Advocates leading girls’ education campaigns around the world.  

We seldom realize, in our comfortable situations, how oppressive and neglecting the world can be. Malala saw our broken system, and didn't accept the status quo. She believed in education and the access to education for all people, girls and boys. 

62 million girls are out of school around the world. The average time spent in education by the poorest girls is only 3 years. There are 70 countries in the world where girls have faced violence for trying to go to school. With the money they raise, the Malala Fund works to secure girl’s rights to a minimum of 12 years of quality education. A change like that would absolutely revolutionize the world—because education empowers. 

      

Join Malala's movement by signing up at http://malala.org and learn more about their impact in the community here. In 2015, through the work of the Malala Fund, lives will be changed. Together, all girls might have access to 12 years of fee-free education, education for funding might be increased, and our methods of counting school children will be improved--allowing us to better meet the needs of providing every young person with good, quality education. Empower girls, and help them achieve their full potential. The craziest thing we can do is nothing. 

 

 

 

 

Written by Grace Mueller

Spring 2015 Intern

*all photographs courtesy of Tanya Malott Photography

 

Wildcard Wednesday: News from Roatán

Wide eyed, gap toothed, curly haired sisters, clinging to new treasures. These treasures are not those one might typically think an 8 year old girl would get giddy over, these rubies and pearls come in the form of colorful pages that tell tales of big red dogs, choo choo trains and magical fairy lands. 

Last week, we traveled with The Nobelity Project to Roatan, Honduras, to learn more about what people on "the big island" (what they call Roatan) need the most. Essentially, we got to be kids for the week - jumping in on classroom lessons, playing games on breaks, telling jokes, and always eating candy. 

 

  

For the Nobelity Project, this wasn't their first go round in Honduras. In 2013, the Nobelity Project partnered with Sandcastle Library to build and operate a bookmobile that has since extended books and improved learning for 14 fishing village schools and 3,500 students on Roatan Island. 

Incredible, right? We thought so too. So, we're going to build another one! 
   

Seeing the bookmobile do so much good for the education of children in Roatan, we couldn't stand by and not be apart of it. ESPEROS and the Nobelity Project have teamed up to build another bookmobile, like the one seen below, that will cater to the other half of Roatan.

 

To kickoff the fundraising, The Nobelity Project hosted the Pirates Club Golf Tournament and have already raised over $10,000 for the second bookmobile. And, starting right this second, 10% of all ESPEROS profits will go towards the project, extending access to books, tutors, internet, reading and math classes, games, and audio/video stories to every child who boards the bookmobile. 

All of the words in the universe couldn't begin to express how excited we are to catalyze positive change in Honduras. These boys and girls are pure and good and deserving of an education that will enable them to chase their wildest dreams. Thank you Nobelity Project, for allowing us to jump on this world-changing adventure, more children will be challenged and grown because of your organization's commitment to improving education in the developing world. 

And to you, our readers, we hope you are excited to join us on this adventure as well. You are as much a part of the world changing than any one of us at ESPEROS and The Nobelity Project. With every purchase, 10% of the profits will go towards building the second bookmobile in Roatan, Honduras. We couldn't do this without you, thank you. 

What books inspired you as a kid? Suggestions on books you feel would be game-changers in the bookmobile? Comment below!

 

Have a killer Wednesday, friends. 

Written by Grace Mueller
Spring 2015 Intern 

 

 

Monday Muse: Zack McDowell

Inspired, motivated, encouraged and influenced by today's Monday Muse, Mr. Zack McDowell. Zack speaks on his life and artistic career with intelligence, passion and heart--you'll quickly realize why he was a clear choice for our blog today. 

Hey Zack! What kind of artist do you consider yourself to be? 

I’m a director, a photographer and I run a small production company, the DUGUD Lab. I have found running a business takes a certain caliber of creativity. I work mainly on fashion and commercial projects that center simplicity and color. (Some of the brands they've worked with include Dell, DSW, Gore Apparel, Helzburg Diamonds, Home Depot, JCPenny, Mary Kay, Neiman Marcus, Raising Canes, TJ Maxx, Vera Bradley, and ESPEROS!)

Have you always considered yourself an artist? 

Honestly, I never made a conscious decision to be an artist. Growing up in a creative household, I remember waking up early on Saturday mornings to draw birds in our backyard or going for long hikes to shoot and develop prints. Creating art has always been a part of my life in very big ways. Even when I started to make a living as an artist, it took me a couple of years to realize there is artistry to the ads that I create. To me, it just felt like an extension of who I am.


How did you get your start? 

While I wasn’t born with a camera in my hand; I did grow up on set. My mom is a talented hair and makeup artist and I was a child model. Over the years I had opportunities to transition from in front of the camera to behind. I’m really thankful to the many great photographers who took the time to show me how to properly expose an image or how to do some cool trick on Photoshop. At a very young age I was able to gain the tools for what would later build my career. 

 

 

 

 

Where are you from? Where do you live now?

A year ago, I made the big move to New York from Dallas. It's been one of the most fulfilling adventures I've ever been on.  

What inspires you? 

One of my favorite things to do in New York is walk around, taking in the sights of the city and the people that fill it. I've always been interested in people--learning their stories and what makes them tick. Whether it's the 80-year-old woman with pink hair at the bodega or the man singing on the subway, it inspires me and makes me want to tell stories that compliment the lives of those around me.  

What do you like most about your ESPEROS backpack?

Living in a transient city, this backpack is essential. I like the textured canvas and the pop of color it adds to my mostly black, white, and gray wardrobe. I also like the well thought out pockets and dividers. I can throw my camera in, pull the drawstring, and know that my stuff is secure.

What does our slogan "carry hope" mean to you?

I've been fortunate enough to travel around the world and no matter where I go there always seems to be an underlying message of hope. During my trips I have seen how different people deal with the concept of faith. Some carry it, while others struggle with it due to circumstances. In developing countries where access to education may be limited or hard to obtain I've found that when we do the diligent work of listening to a community's needs and support them – we all flourish. Each time I see the message on my backpack I'm reminded to carry a better future for myself and the communities that ESPEROS supports.

Why do you think education is important? Do you think it always comes in the form of formal training? 

Education is extremely important. I've always been of the mindset that if you don't learn things formally, you'll figure them out in the real world -- which isn't always easy. I was never really good at school. I didn't understand why teachers gave you standardized tests to gauge things the world is never going to offer in the form of multiple choice. I took a lot of online courses, studied under people who were better than me, and took in any opportunity to practice the skills and knowledge I have today. I'm proud of my non-traditional education.

Do you have any hobbies, talents, near death experiences?

In my free time I enjoy painting portraits of important people in my life. I’ll find a picture of a moment that I really enjoyed and I’ll interrupt it on a canvas. It's time consuming so I don't find myself doing it too often but when I do I find that it’s a good way to reflect on a moment and the time that I spent with that person. 

Favorite song you are listening to? 

Ah! That is such a hard question. Music is part of my daily ritual. Whether it’s for a photo shoot or just walking down the street, every moment has it’s own song and artist. There are a few songs that years later I still can’t seem to take off my playlist:

“Tulips” (Club Version) by Bloc Party
“Humming Bird” by Alex Clare
“Blueberry Pancakes” by Fink
“One Day They’ll Know“ (Odesza Remix) by Pretty Lights

 

Now, a free-bee! Tell us whatever you would like our audience to know...

I have found that creativity is something that has to be practiced. It’s a culture that you surround yourself with and a ritual of exposing yourself to things that expand your horizons. I’m in the process of launching a new production company in New York City and I couldn’t be more excited for the platform that we are creating. We are constantly working with thrilling clients and looking for new creative endeavors. You can always follow our journey on Instagram (@dugudlab) or at our website (DugudLab.com)

Thanks for sharing your story with us, Zack - you're a rad one. In an industry where it is easy to let your work speak for itself, thank you for sharing with us the things you believe in. Your words on education, people and seeking adventure are pure gold!

You guys can follow Zack on Instagram @zackmcdowell or check out his Facebook page, Zack McDowell -- keep an eye out for his latest project with JC Penny

 

Written by Grace Mueller
Spring 2015 Intern

Friendly Friday: #loveisproject

What is LOVE? If you asked even 10 people that question, you would get a multitude of answers. Love can be something you yearn for, something you already possess, something you do or something you receive. We don't know the answer, because there is no right or wrong answer to this question. But wouldn't it be powerful to know what others think about love around the world? 

 In 2014, LIFE Line and The Supply Change collaborated on a project to explore just that. Traveling around the world with a single LOVE Bracelet, turning strangers into friends, and documenting how love connects us all, the story took flight and resonated in people’s hearts. They created the #loveisproject, an Indiegogo campaign that raised money to put the LOVE Bracelet into production and provide jobs for Maasai women in Kenya, where LIFE Line works with over 400 mums.

 #loveisproject: the art of love in motion across the world 

 

These bracelets, made by women in Kenya, provide employment for women and their families to lift themselves out of poverty. They create community, connecting the makers and the wearers around the world with a common purpose, and raise awareness, creating a powerful community of activators who are spreading love with people across the world. 

                                       

The campaign was a huge success, raising almost $30K beyond the initial goal of $5,000, gaining support from fans like Sadie Robertson, Shay Mitchell, and Tori Kelly, and eventually top fashion retailer, American Eagle Outfitters. LOVE Bracelets are now sold online and in-store through American Eagle, and supporters are joining the conversation, sharing their own definitions of love with the #loveisproject tag on Instagram

For more information, including stories of impact from the incredible women who crafted the LOVE Bracelets and how to join the #loveisproject community, check out the LIFE Line Blog. Check out their Mother's Day promotion (Mom's Day is in t-minus 9 days), or buy a bracelet through American Eagle here and think about the impact you are making on women across the globe, and their attempt to spread the love. 

How do you define LOVE? Let us know in the comments below.

 

Written by Grace Mueller
Spring 2015 Intern
*all photos courtesy of LIFE Line