Mother’s Day has arrived, and while I do believe this day should be celebrated every day, whenever Mother’s Day approaches, I can’t help but become excited about exploring heartfelt ways that I can make this year’s holiday more special than the one prior. Love has many forms of expression. Creativity opens up the unique ways it is conveyed. At Xunopia, the stream of creativity rarely ceases to flow. As we entered the Mother’s Day season Pearl expressed her creative idea to mark this year’s holiday with a loving Xun touch. Over the past week, this has transpired through the Clam Shell’s latest Mother’s Day-inspired project—a revamp of an old but dearly loved blouse sourced directly from Pearl’s mother’s closet. The more I learned about this Clam Shell Project, Pearl revealed the ways that it could also be undertaken by others and personalized to hold sentimental value. Not only could this be something to touch and honour our beautiful mothers and the amazing motherly figures who’ve played significant roles in our lives, but this project is something that is also a gift to Mother Earth. It’s a sustainable, creative, and cost-friendly way to think outside of the box and imaginatively recreate from the pieces that belong to our pre-existing wardrobes if we were planning to add onto our favourite Clam Shell Boutique gift items. During our chat, Pearl shared more about the meaning behind the project and how a gift idea like this can also become a regular activity that promotes eco-friendly practices while involving different generations within the family. MONAH: Why was this Clam Shell Project special to you? PEARL: It was a special one for me because it gave me an opportunity to create something special for my mother that I know she will enjoy. She always expresses that she is content without receiving purchased gifts, so I thought this would be a loving way to show my appreciation for her by doing something special. MONAH: What did you do to personalize the experience for your mother, while promoting sustainability? PEARL: In business, when working with clients, I always apply this rule— know your customer (KYC). This applies in this case as well. In order to personalize this project for my mother I involved her in the creation process. By doing so, I understood what she liked and didn’t like; what she wanted to accentuate or cover; and how to recreate a piece that would reflect her personality and style. I then applied that knowledge in my design process. My mother has great shoulders, so I emphasized that area by adding cut-out sleeves. Another thing I did was adjust the length of the blouse. My mother wanted the piece to fall beyond the pant waist. However, there was not enough fabric, so we had to arrive to a consensus about the length. There was a bit of comprise that had to happen. We decided on the blouse being mid-length because of limitations caused by not having enough of the same print fabric to work with. I created a tapered look by adding an ever so slight flare, while preserving the design elements that already belonged to the garment. I left the original front lapel of the blouse and finished it with black satin binding, making it dressy without being ostentatious. MONAH: What is one creative way that mothers can promote sustainability cross-generationally? PEARL: Many mothers have items in their wardrobes that they have kept over the decades knowing that fashion is revolving and can be worn again in different seasons. Since their wardrobes are great discovery grounds to browse and find fashion and artistic inspiration. The feeling of exploring your mother’s closet, discovering unique pieces, and sharing in the storytelling experience as your mother unveils the stories and history behind different garments is priceless. It doesn’t cost a penny and it can encourage younger generations to tap into their creativity and imagine how old fashions can be styled or recreated to reflect the current landscape of fashion that appeals to their demographic. REFLECTION After wrapping up my chat with Pearl, one thing that resonated with me was the way in which fashion can create a bridge that allows one generation to experience the essence and history of another. I was moved by fashion’s ability to evoke emotion and meaning through the stories and experiences that it is connected to. Oftentimes, these connections are personal, it creates a closer connection between us and the wearer, and transcends the parameters of time. -M.W. Follow @pearl_xun on Instagram to stay connected!