The Parative Project

this flag won't change your life, but it will change someone else's

Dream To Do: Stevie Van Horn

Drew Oxley

CAN'T EXPRESS OUR EXCITEMENT TO HAVE BEEN ABLE TO TALK TO STEVIE ABOUT HER DREAM TO DO. We were introduced to Stevie through Instagram and have been huge fans since. Stevie's name has become a household name in our house for her creativity and sustainable no waste lifestyle. When someone (usually me...) wastes or throws away something that can be repurposed, the other person (Drew) will be like what would Stevie say about this? It has been so fun and eye opening following her through social media and seeing how she creatively is working to solve our cultures waste problem. It's interesting and different than anything we know anyone doing, so we can't wait for you to hear from her! 

PARATIVE: Thanks Stevie! We are so happy to be able to hear from you. Tell us about your dream.

STEVIE: A dream of mine is to further raise awareness of how we impact whats around us and to help people to understand their individual power in the grand scheme of preserving and sustaining our earth.  To re-establish the connection between humans and nature.

PARATIVE: From following your social media, you have definitely made this into a lifestyle. What sparked your passion for your lifestyle? Was it after a specific trip, event, or experience? Was is gradual or a 180 overnight?

STEVIE: I remember this amazing conversation I had with one of my good friends followed by him letting be borrow a book called "Mycelium Running" by Paul Stamets. Mycelium is known as the neurological network of the forest and its a thin layer of thread like fibers that run underneath the forest floor, and they bud fungi. Fungi are profound recyclers and without them we would be knee deep in dead matter and animal carcasses. They also play an important role in allowing non relational species to communicate with one another. For example mycelium can transfer vitamin D from one tree to another that isn't getting enough sunlight. Anyhow, so the idea that this incredible of things exists that plays such a role in our ecosystem got me in a vast wormhole of what our role as humans are to the environment. Thinking of how destructive we are and the creation of nonrenewable materials that are ruining us and all other species got me in an obsession that we must do something about it, and fast. It took me 2 months to prep for being zero waste, and figuring out how I want my passion to be executed is still something that manifest differently everyday.

PARATIVE: That is crazy. We have never heard about mycelium. Thats amazing. What are some action steps that you've taken towards your dream recently?

STEVIE: Well I've created an instagram, youtube, blog/website that touches base on how I live a minimal, light footprint and hopefully motivates people to find their own passion for this sustainable change. I am currently repurposing white vintage 1970's tees and embroidering endangered species on them and they are up for sale. The idea behind it is to merge fashion with the condition of our world and how our actions affect different species-and creating change through visual awareness and an everyday item such as a white classic tee. I also do beach clean ups in the summer and hopefully can expand with getting groups of children to help out! We gotta start engraining behavioral consciousness at a young age!

PARATIVE: How does this dream play out in 5 to 10 years?

STEVIE:  Gosh, in 5/10 years I just hope to continue raising awareness through different avenues that speak to different people. I would love to do bigger embroidered pieces such as denim jackets, hand sewn repurposed linen tops etc...I would also love to start an organization dedicated to keeping beaches clean with a focus on teaching individuals how to avoid materials and that hurt eco systems and fragile biomes.  My secret dream is to open up a wildlife/dog rehabilitation center but I can't tell if that is something I want to do in 10 years or in 30 years haha.

PARATIVE: And for all of us who are just learning and want to start living more sustainably, what are a few "entry level" practices that people can incorporate in their daily routine to leave a lighter footstep, do you have any suggestions?

STEVIE: Entry level ways of making a lighter footprint is refusing plastic bags, opting for a tote. Bring a mason jar with you for outside the house; coffee, smoothie, bulk items. Buy vintage or second hand and avoid fast fashion at all costs. Another thing is just asking yourself if you really need what you want to buy. Everything made came from a natural resource. Supply and Demand is very real and so the more we demand from the earth, the more it gets decimated. Considering purchases is huge. Striving for a minimal life is fulfilling inward and helps out the planet!

NOW THAT'S A GIRL WHO IS DREAMING TO DO! So cool. We love it. And love those suggestions, so practical and doable. When you see me out with my mason jar give me a pat on the back and I'll cheers your mason jar with mine!