For the past couple of months I have been experiencing a renewal like nothing I have experienced before. It has been extreme in its measures, but, it has been worth it and my whole core is vibrating at an entirely new level.

You see, after an incredible trip with my hubbie John Esty to Parrot Cay, an island resort off of Turks and Caicos, I felt the rumblings of an overhaul. For years I have been drawn to a more balanced spiritual life but have always gone in and out of it depending on my stress levels and attention span. When I finally got to decompress with my beloved in the holistic setting of Parrot Cay, I was able to jump start my yoga and meditation practice and felt inspired to start the journey of becoming vegan.

For those unaware of what being vegan entails, it is, simply put, not eating any animal products, including dairy. I had recently read Alicia Silverstone’s great book “The Kind Diet” and started to come to terms with the impact of meat eating on myself, on the animals who are being “factory farmed” and on the environment.

The personal renewal I have experienced through becoming vegan has been very powerful. I sleep better, feel better and am more connected to the world at large as well as to my inner world. With this change, I have also “renewed” my commitment to doing what I can to alleviate the suffering of others, which includes our beloved animal friends.

As a designer, I have always worked in leather and part of my identity in the fashion community has been associated with sexy leather styles.This part of my work no longer makes sense to me and I am foregoing further use of leather come September. The leather belts that I sell in my store and the leather styles I designed for my fall collection will be discontinued by then and I will seek out non-leather alternatives that resonate with my new found focus.

Becoming a vegan is obviously not for everyone and it is indeed extreme in its execution. For me, though, it feels right. My friends, who have seen me try on spiritual trends like hats, have been incredibly supportive hoping that this is not just another fad that I will abandon like last season’s must have! I promise to keep you posted…lovejb

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