Saturday, September 18, 2010

Richard & Cosmos Wise - Rag Dealers

An interesting Spitafields Life article about a father and a son who deal in worn clothing from pre-WWII that is well worth the read:

This is a quote from that article that struck a very deep cord in my soul.

“At a certain age, you realise that what you do is who you are.” said Richard recalling his life working in finance. “I think the office is the most evil invention of the twentieth century, worse even than a factory.”

At the ripe older age of 57, I had worked in the corporate world for more years than I can easily recall.  A long part of that time was spent in the legal, technology and then like Richard, finance sectors. I tried in my own way to make a difference.  Like other quiet radicals, I tried to make the work environment a kinder, gentler, fairer place for all, not just those with blind ambition and little conscience. Several years ago I came to the realization that the corporate world was winning and I needed to do something that mattered. And with some inheritance money from my mother's estate, I started Distinctive Sewing Supplies on a part time basis. I deal in fabrics and garment sewing supplies because that is what inspires me and reflects best who I am.

The corporate world and I parted ways about two years ago. I am continuing on in my new world of textiles, sewing and crafting. And I find myself very pleased to be where I am. I sometimes regret that it took so long to get to this space but I am very happy to be here.

And this additional quote from the article, sums it up for me.

“For the first time in my life, I can like the face I am putting on,” admitted Richard with quiet grin of reflection, “because in this line of business you can be yourself. You are your own master and your time is your own. We buy what we like, not what we think we can sell. So you are exposing yourself, showing your own taste and you’re trying to convince people to share your passion.”

Well said, Richard Wise, well said.

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