S06 Episode 277 | Questioning how we *value* garments & respecting the limits of partnership across fashion with Jesus Herrera

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In episode 277, Kestrel welcomes Jesus Herrera — a model, clothing designer, vintage curator, and poet — to the show. Also known by their moniker Donatella because of their Instagram handle @donatellaversanchez, Jesus is the cofounder of the vintage jesus online store and Les Jesus fashion brand.

“I’ve also brought space to my partnerships. I’ve also brought an understanding that I should not interfere and I should not demand from a culture that has existed for hundreds and sometimes thousands of years in one specific way, just because I have a purpose or just because I have a need or just because I have a goal in mind. My purpose, my need and my goal are my own. But my purpose and my need and my goal should not interfere with somebody else’s happiness, with their way of life, with how they think that the best quality of life is lived or led.” -Jesus

Have you ever noticed the way that certain garments are valued more than others? Or the way that some craftsmanship styles are aligned with couture or exceptional quality, and others are not held to that same regard?

This week’s guest reminds us of some of these ways that specific garments are valued differently than others, and how so often these perceptions are based largely around who wears those garments.

For example, how does the fashion industry value a piece of clothing, if it’s worn by the ladies who lunch? What about if it’s worn by an Indigenous person?

One theme that recurs throughout our conversation is finding ways to resist this dichotomy between who is valued and who is not.

As this week’s guest notes – “Not only one set of people who have a certain set of resources matter more than another set of people in the world. This is how we should be looking at community and politics and life.”

We also explore the expectations that come with capitalism, and how surrendering to those can hinder the development of meaningful partnerships and relationships.

For this week’s guest, there are so many limits around partnership, and those limits should be respected.

Quotes & links from the conversation:

  • “But when I came to have better resources, I realized that that was not the case — that new things were not made of quality, that new things were not made of wonderful materials, that new things were not warm or didn’t keep you always cozy. So, I think that’s why I gravitated more toward that idea of sustainability — of using vintage things, of making things in really good quality fabrics, because that’s just the experience I grew up with, out of necessity.” -Jesus (9:40)

  • “The hardest person to be is the person that you say you are.” -a quote from Teri Agins that Jesus mentions

  • The End Of Fashion by Teri Agins, book that Jesus mentions

  • “We all live with contradictions — I live with a ton of contradictions and I’m not hiding them, which is something that I’m really proud of.” -Jesus (20:11)

  • “This whole thing about never wanting to be wrong is the problem.” -Jesus (33:28)

  • "Real partnership and good partnership is not someone coming in somewhere and saying, ‘I’m gonna do you a favor’. I don’t come into any of my relationships thinking I’m going to do the other person a favor. I come into every relationship thinking — I’m gonna learn something. I come excited and I come ready to be impressed and mesmerized, because most of the times when I’ve come into anything with that mindset and with that open heart, I have been mesmerized, I have been impressed, I have learned something, I’ve been humbled by the experience — that’s how I come into every experience, and that’s partnership to me.” -Jesus (35:02)

  • “I’ve also brought space to my partnerships. I’ve also brought an understanding that I should not interfere and I should not demand from a culture that has existed for hundreds and sometimes thousands of years in one specific way, just because I have a purpose or just because I have a need or just because I have a goal in mind.” -Jesus (37:47)

  • “Meet the Designer Duo Marrying Traditional Mexican Craft With Forward-Thinking Fashion” in Vogue, article Kestrel mentions

  • “From Indigenous Textiles to Gender Fluidity, Fashion Designer Jesus Herrera Wants Marginalized People to Be Seen & Respected” in Mexico In My Pocket, article Kestrel mentions

  • The Vintage Jesus on Etsy >

  • Les Jesus Website >

  • Follow Les Jesus on Instagram >

  • Follow The Vintage Jesus on Instagram >

  • Follow Jesus on Instagram >

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