I remember watching Brookdale Mall (Brooklyn Center, Minnesota) being constructed as we all eagerly peered out the school bus windows, on our way to Northport elementary. (It was my kindergarten year, and everything was bustling with “newness”.)
It was magical – Just imagining a mass of stores, under one cover, in a luxurious setting with restaurants attached – called: A MALL!
So many shopping firsts and fashion firsts were acquired at Brookdale Mall: Dayton’s, Penney’s, Donaldson’s, Snyder’s and……..Sears. I worked at Sears throughout High School….. it was a grand place to work. I can’t remember a time as a little girl when I didn’t look forward to the “Christmas Wish Book“, or going with my Dad to get a “Craftsman” tool. And when Mom’s washer went on the blink – off we’d go to Sears for a replacement. Sears was the store for the Everyman.
The demolishing of Brookdale Mall a number of years back left one vestige standing: Sears. But now – it will soon be demolished as well.
I visited my flagship job/store/memory maker – in the last final days, and it was heartbreaking. Below are a few pictures on the history of Sears – as I remember it and photographed it.
Nothing stays the same.
And, at times, they simply vanish.
Sunday evening – June 7, 2015 – Dignity by Design (my company) was notified that it had become a semi-finalist in the Minnesota Cup Competition!!
This may not mean so very much to those out of state or globally, but to Minnesota it means a great deal. And to a company that has dedicated its entirety to disabilities and the independence of the disabled, veteran and elderly…..well, it is unprecedented!!
For years, decades and historically – Disabilities have eluded investors as a non-glamorous, non-high-tech, non-money-making market. However, with the onset of disabilities hitting the runway in fashion, new technological advances in disease, war aftermath, community inclusion and software (including apps) rising to meet the needs of disabilities – it has become a viable “Social Impact” venture to investors and media worldwide.
It’s about time!
“When we’ve risen to meet the needs of our fellow man/woman – to create an environment that allows for independence, recognition of abilities and respect of worth – as a whole – regardless of ability or disAbility – then, we have truly evolved.” Donna Freeberg
Thank you MNCup for your recognition. It is amazing!
Disabled models – on the runway – on the front pages of major news communication AND being featured on the webpages of new – up and coming – clothiers. Fabulous, right??
ALL jumping on the bandwagon to visually “support” the disabled and in return gaining significant “Feel good” press…. HOWEVER with little or no exceptions… providing absolutely no products that are specific solutions to the disabled market’s clothing needs, outside of their general clothing line.
Putting disabled models on the runway and not providing specialized benefits is what the disabled already HAS, what they have always dealt with and simply put: marketing and publicity play at it’s worst.
It’s more than time to recognize this market in the investment world, in the fashion world, in the business community and for it’s Global impact.
And.. It’s time for a real change…. a real answer… and some heavy funding to make this a multi-billion dollar industry: By doing good, serving disabilities and making a profound, dignified CHANGE!!
There is much on the global runway today that is addressing disabilities and fashion. Models are entering the runways in designs from the best houses of fashion. My colleagues, with disabilities, are finally being focused on – for the first time – for the beautiful people that they are – disability or no.
But is this just a showing for the designers, spotlighting their “compassionate” nature, and garnering headlines? The clothing is not made exclusively for the disabled – and although it’s very lovely – it does not address the issue of fashion for disabilities.
I believe that it’s opportunistic. My clothing line “Dignity by Design” is made specifically for disabled, Veterans and the elderly. (www.dignitybydesign.com)
We have struggled for years to get recognition by investors and angels, Why?:
Not enough of a market (5 million Americans and returning Veterans….not enough?)
“We don’t understand the disabled community”. (How about getting to know them?)
“We don’t understand the manufacturing/clothing market…too unstable”. (Does “Fubu” ring familiar?)
“It’s not technology…. and the return in the technology industry is more guaranteed.” (Although, with an 80% failure rate – the ROI is far from guaranteed.)
…The need IS real for the 5 million Americans alone, struggling with clothing issues, not having adequate resources and unable to afford designer prices – even if the clothing was made for their needs?
Please post your concerns or interest – because I am mystified at the apathy and lack of concrete solutions provided, thus far, for the daily needs of professional and social disabled citizens. We have always had the answer!
Minnesota’s Angel Tax Credit provides a 25-percent credit to investors or investment funds that put money into startup companies focused on high technology, new proprietary technology, or a new proprietary product, process or service in specified fields. The maximum credit is $125,000 per person, per year ($250,000 if filing jointly). The credit is refundable. Residents of other states and foreign countries are eligible.
A total of $16 million in tax credits is available, divided into two parts:
$7.5 million is reserved until Sept. 30 for investments in businesses owned by women or minorities or in businesses located in Greater Minnesota. As of 1/26/2015, $6.0 million remains. After Oct. 1, any remaining tax credits not allocated to these targeted businesses will be made available to others.
Another $8.5 million in credits (including unused credits from 2014) is available for investments in other businesses. As of 1/26/2015, $5.5 million remains.
First and foremost: HAPPY HOLIDAYS to all and may we all have Enough….
May the holidays enlighten us to diversity, and usher in a new year of Dignity for all!
As for this year andDignity by Design: We’ve had our ups and downs. It continues to be a challenge to enlighten the financial community on the importance of disability services and products for the disabled, veterans and elderly. When I say may we all have Enough….I mean that we should all have enough dignity, enough respect, enough joy and enough Ability to love ourselves and feel blessed with what we do have…..
It’s not easy in these tough economic, employment and Social Media crazed times to be
grateful for the hard times, the sick times, the lonely times and the times of loss. So with the Holidays upon us, I wish you Enough…. enough strength, love and fortune to anticipate 2015 with hope and a renewed joy!
I believe that every Physically Disabled Individual should have the right of Independence and Dignity….Don’t you? Don’t we all??
AND….I’ve got a crazy idea:
WHAT IF.…Celebrities living with a disability came together in Support, Partnering or as a Team in making disabled fashion their OWN? Each with their OWN individual STAMP on the styling of garments for this amazing populace?? Cool huh???
DIGNITY by DESIGN: “Brilliant Apparel for the Physically Challenged and all Disabilities” We NEED you…. And isn’t it Personal to you? Millions of Americans living with a disability have nowhere to turn for fashionable
clothing. NO Where – but Dignity by Design
Singly or as a Celebrity group YOU can make this happen.
YOU can be part of something greater! AND Your name will
live on – not only as a Star but as a legacy STAR MAKER.
There are 2 ways you can support and make a difference or just CALL me!!!