I have something I want to share with all of you. I've been pouring my heart and soul into it for the last few months now. Change is always scary and hard, but only the best things come from it. Here it goes...
I started GP as a creative outlet for my obsession with Olive. Using my developing creative eye, she and I would traverse the city looking for cool backdrops and walls. I loved it, and it fulfilled me for a time.
At the same time, I began to be more involved in dog rescue. I loved that I could make an immediate difference in the life of another living thing. Having grown up on a farm, but living in the city for the past 18 years, I missed my connection with animals and here was my way of reconnecting. Thanks to Olive, Pitbulls in particular became my cause. I wanted to be able to speak for, and represent the misunderstood.
Here’s where a convergence happened. One day I went on the hunt for a Pittie necklace. I wanted something small. Something delicate, stylish and minimalistic that fit my personal aesthetic. I came up empty. Same thing happened with a tank top. Was it too much to ask to wear a Pitbull shirt that didn’t have a slogan, barbed wire or a political statement on it? Apparently. So what’s a girl to do? Make her own.
I didn’t start The Gentle Pit as an e-commerce outlet. I started it as a creative outlet. But then, as I created my necklace and my shirts I figured that I couldn’t be the only one who would want them. And at the same time, I saw how my local dog rescue could do SO much more for dogs in need if they had more funding. You see where I’m headed right?
So, I started to design and create Pitbull and rescue centered apparel with a give-back percentage to rescue.
For a while this was good enough. But something kept tickling my brain. There had to be something bigger than tank tops and t-shirts. I’m a dog lover. But I’m also a lover of design. Decorating my home and closet with beautiful things is a daily activity for me. Why then, can’t I have my cake and eat it to? Why can't my dollars count in a more powerful way?
And so here we are today, on the verge of a new direction for The Gentle Pit. I know a lot of you follow Olive because you love her and her pictures, and I’m SO grateful for your support- but I think together we can do more!
Here’s the concept: Things you want…for a cause you love.
I want a place where anyone can find beautifully made things for their home and wardrobe, that also supports dog rescue. I think that you can have style and support a good cause.
I also think part of the fun in shopping is discovery. While getting Gentle Pit to this point, I’ve had the opportunity to meet so many wonderfully gifted creators and makers behind new brands. And I think it is so important to support the creative endeavors of these entrepreneurs. Finding emerging brands, supporting budding makers and creators AND saving dogs lives. Pretty cool, right?!
So over the next week you are going to see a change at The Gentle Pit Instagram. Of course I will always bring you the best of my smiling velvet hippo, Olive, but I also want to bring you more. I want to talk about and show beautiful things. Photos of design, lovely items made by emerging brands, local artisans and makers. Stories of the rescue dogs we have helped. Stories of your rescue dogs!
The Gentle Pit website will be re-launching as well with a face lift. You will still be able to find awesome shirts and Pittie items, but now you will also be able to discover other things! I have searched all over for the best curated goods. Beautifully scented candles, gorgeous jewelry, handmade bags and limited edition items will all be coming your way. And guess what!? You can purchase them knowing that you will be getting something beautifully awesome, AND helping save pup's lives.
I also want to tell you stories. Stories of rescue dogs like Jordan, who I lost this week, but still touched my heart. Stories of the makers behind the beautiful brands I’m bringing you. I think story is what connects all of us and brings us together, and this will be a huge part of The Gentle Pit.
To bring it all home: I know I’m taking a risk. I know that I’m going to lose some of you who just want great photos of chunky Pittie heads (don’t we all), and that makes me sad. But I’m also ok with it, because I want something bigger. I want a shift in how we think about Pitties and rescue. I want the name Pitbull to be associated with beautiful things and I want dog rescue to be repackaged in a stylish wrapper. It’s my vision and belief that if I can offer things that appeal to more people, then that is just one more life that I can help save. I hope you will take this journey with me!