A couple of years ago, I came across this 27-year-old book written by Clarissa Pinkola Estes: Women Who Run With the Wolves. I think it came “recommended” by Emma Watson, who is also a strong proponent for pubic hair oil and other feminist ideologies. I was intrigued, so I found a copy at Half Price Books and started reading. (Of course, it’s a super long and heavy book, so I’m still working my way through it.) But over the course of these two years, something interesting has happened. Other women – inspiring artists and writers whom I’ve come into contact with through my work at the Colony mostly – are reading this same book, too. Like we’re all on the same wavelength, digging into these same ideas, figuring out how they fit into our unique creations and personal brands. And this is how it’s flexing into A Necessary Rebrand and its mission, today.
You may have noticed the new change in tagline at the top of this page: “Namaste, Wild Women,” which means “I bow to the divine in you, modern day gypsies and artists and women who are still finding their place in the scheme of their own lives.” In this mantra, I find myself speaking to women who are strong, who are fearless, passionate, present, honest, and kind. Women who are creative, who seek new ways to truly live, who long for more and are willing to go down whatever roads it takes to find it. Because somewhere, deep down, these qualities reside within all of us, even if we don’t know it yet. Even if we’re still trying to grasp at what those little tugs on our hearts might seem to mean.
I’m speaking to these Wild Women because, over the last couple of months, something has been stirring up inside of me. It’s something that longs to be heard, even when it doesn’t quite know what to say. It’s something that hearkens back to those who’ve come before me, and those who come into my life every day. It’s a call to be one with womanhood, with the earth, and with myself. It’s an understanding that makes more sense with every step I take. It’s a journey, I know, into my past and my present. And currently, it’s manifesting itself in a very clear and physical manner.
The blush and grey undertones of my post-college years are burning into a deeper rusty shade of orange, one that represents the red dirt of the south and the west, the deep hues of a sunset witnessed over a mountaintop. The simplicity of not wanting to stand out is expanding into big, bold squash blossom necklaces that seem to command a kind of attention wherever I go. And the quiet apologies are strengthening into one, big opinionated roar.
But the fear hits me when I come to terms with how cliche these changes might appear. “Add a feather to the logo,” I think. “Buy a wide-brimmed western hat. Wear a bandana around your neck. Put a cactus on the windowsill.” All of these things, while genuine representations of my interests, have already been done before. They lack originality, to my dismay. And with that, their trendiness carries a certain kind of deadline, like a fast-fashion dictionary definition of “cool” circa 2013-present (exact date of expiration TBD). As I began to integrate these changes, I worried that embracing these potentially dated elements of a persona might leave me stuck in a category I didn’t want to be in.
But with what kind of authenticity is “everyone else” doing this? I had to ask myself. How many women are dusting their feeds with wide open fields and adventure, only to rush back home to their chic city lofts? Isn’t this wild woman within me already breaking her back in the dirt? Isn’t she warding off the sting of mosquitos and the ache of poison oak as she types these very words? Hasn’t she already earned her place as a wild woman? Hasn’t she already begun to live that life she thought she was seeking? Isn’t there more authenticity in all this than in showering that life with filters and copycat dreams?
Why yes, yes there is. But now what?
This embrace of the Wild Woman, this new venture into a more authentic showing of my inner self, will have to surpass fast fashion and dated trends. It will have to be a part, not just of how I look, but of who I am, rather than something that comes and goes like a runaway tumbleweed. And that, my friends, is something we’ll keep talking about as this week goes on.