An Open Letter to 2020

Dear friends and family,

I am now relocated from Phnom Penh, Cambodia to Amsterdam in the Netherlands. After spending six years in Southeast Asia building GOOD KRAMA, I felt very depleted. Starting a business really tested my endurance and mental health - It was non-stop. Meanwhile, the Greta Thunbergs of the world were assembling millions of people to the streets demanding climate justice. I felt extremely inspired by this growing movement yet deeply troubled by the sense of isolation I felt from Cambodia. I once started a #fridaysforfuture event page wondering if I could lead local demonstrations only to take it down immediately for fear of police retaliation - after all, protesting in Cambodia is illegal.

This ‘fear of missing out’ kept lingering throughout 2019 and I yearned to be more involved in this global awakening beyond creating meaningful fashion. I kept busy with GOOD KRAMA, releasing a collection in zero waste production cycles, participating in pop-ups across three continents and transforming our Creative Boutique into one Phnom Penh’s best ethical shopping destination. Nevertheless, I was young when I started GOOD KRAMA and still have a lot to learn. I felt far from direct contact with industry leaders and movements in the sustainable fashion realm. This realization was weighing on me and planted the seed that took a year to germinate - I wanted to move to Europe and be in the heart of the action.

So, what will happen to GOOD KRAMA in 2020?

Firstly, I will not be releasing whole new collections this year except for zero-waste accessories in my continued efforts to close the loop. Instead, I will spend my time learning from you and better understand what you need in style, comfort and durability. I will ask for your advice on design options and make you an integral part of the process for Spring Summer 2021. All web-shop and pop-up activities will remain in business as usual.

Secondly, I will be sending one newsletter a week, every Sunday, starting with this one. I invite you to join me for a #SundaySess where I will share some things I learned that week with topics at the convergence of fashion, sustainability and technology. I will, of course, mix in any news and updates related to GOOD KRAMA. In the spirit of growth, I want to soak up knowledge, challenge the boundaries of sustainable fashion and surround myself with industry professionals that inspire me.

Thirdly, I am happy to announce that GOOD KRAMA will be piloting a garment sharing program with a French company come Q2 of this year. Indeed, sustainability in fashion can take many forms and garment sharing is one of them! I am excited to explore this model and take a step further towards democratizing ethical fashion.

Lastly, I want to add that I am grateful to all the partners, suppliers and makers that worked with me on textile weaving and garment design over six collections and look forward to work with them again in the near future.

Sometimes you have to pause to reflect, and keep going…

 

Catch you at the next #SundaySess !

xx

Katia Nicolas

 


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