September 20, 2016

A Closer Look at How Clothing Affects Your Children

Momhood 09202016 (4)

Every week, Preen tackles motherhood sans the rose-tinted glasses. Our columnists L. JulianoMarla DarwinMonica Eleazar-Manzano, and Rossana Unson tell their personal experiences like it is—at times frustrating, oftentimes confusing, but always enlightening.

Fashion is a seven-trillion dollar industry per year. The multi-billionaire founder of Zara has just been announced the richest man in the world, overtaking Bill Gates. With so much business and money involved, the more mindful we should be about the clothes we wear.

Did you ever think about the energy behind the clothing produced for us? The idea of energy in material things is not new to me; nine years ago, while conversing with my pediatrician Dr. Crickette Palanca-Chen, I asked a question on Waldorf Education and why wooden toys are recommended versus plastic toys. She explained that our children harness the energy from which things are made. Most plastic toys are now made in China, likely by underaged children living and working in harsh conditions. The energy of all of that creation stays in the end product affecting the vibrational currency of it. It struck a chord inside of me and since that day, I have placed far more value in all-natural, handmade and homemade items with love whether it is food, toys, or clothing.

United Nations estimates that over 200 million children are engaged in child labor which is illegal in most countries but is rampant in other parts of the world where poverty is a real issue of hunger and survival. The fashion supply chain is complex, making it difficult for end consumers to know if the clothes we buy are partially made by underaged and exploited women and child laborers.

Another factor of how clothing affects us and our children is through the material and dyes used. Almost all commercial clothing available is made from non-organic material and dyes. Chemically produced dyes pollute our seas while genetically modified cotton is widely used. Note that for every pound of GMO cotton, one third of chemical pesticides and fertilizers are used, too! Thus, when purchasing clothing made from these materials, we are supporting the poisoning of our soils and seas. It is also alarming to know that children absorb much more of these toxins through their skin than adult bodies because of their size.

A less chilling factor of how clothing affects us is through color. Rudolf Steiner says, “Color is the soul of nature…when we experience color, we participate in this soul.”

My son goes to a Waldorf School where they follow the colors of the day which also connects to the planets (Monday is Purple or Moon Day, Tuesday is Red or Mars Day, and so on).

In Vastu and Jyotish, two Vedic sciences that originated in India, wearing clothing particular to the color of the day ruled by the planet is very auspicious because it aligns you with the natural cycles of nature. It is the same for our children—they thrive on rhythm and knowing which colors to wear on a particular day sets the mood for them. There is peace and order knowing this which results in less tantrums. Did I just give you a lightbulb moment? It won’t hurt to try being more mindful of our fashion choices for ourselves and our kids, right?

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author in her private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of, or any other entity of the Inquirer Group of Companies.


Art by Dorothy Guya

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Filed Under:

Bill Gates, Carbon Footprint, Child Labor, children, Children’s Moods, clothes, clothing, colors, Colors of Nature, Cotton, culture, Dr. Crickette Palanca-Chen, Dye, environment, Exploited Women, fashion, Fashion Industry, Growing Up, Jyotish, Kids, Mama, Mindful, Mindful Parenting, mom, momhood, moods, Mother, Motherhood, nature, organic, parenting, parents, pediatrician, poison, Preen,, Richest Man, Schooling, style, Underaged Children, Vastu, Verdic, Waldorf Education, zara

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