Thoughtful Style | Darzah Tatreez Oxfords & Thinking Through Life Change

 Details: Sweater - thrifted (similar); T-shirt - Known Supply; Scarf - old; Jeans - AE; Shoes - c/o Darzah
Details: Sweater – thrifted (similar); T-shirt – Known Supply; Scarf – old; Jeans – AE; Shoes – c/o Darzah

Fall’s Last Green

I took these pictures a few weeks ago just as the leaves on the trees were turning their first oranges and yellows, while this tree held onto its summer clothes a little bit longer. The vibrant green of leaves in full verdancy is the visual equivalent of the first gust of cold air in fall, and when the two are combined, I am often overcome with a blend of wonder and nostalgia, as if the construct of time has fallen away for just a second and I’m seeing the earth as God sees it, free from the burden of expectation.

Now we’ve arrived at late fall – snow was originally planned for last Friday, but conditions improved – and late semester. Only a week until Thanksgiving Break, only 2-ish weeks remaining of classes (! – that is bonkers to me). I have three papers to write, and I am both excited and resistant (excited because I get to explore some concepts in more depth and resistant because I have done so much self-work to remove the power of meritocracy from my psyche and yet here it is again in full force).

I thought I wanted to get grades back in order to measure my success, but now I am remembering that academic “success” is often more dependent on knowing the rules of the game than internalizing information in a meaningful, interconnected way. So I’ve been working through mixed feelings, and trying to maintain some inner serenity. It’s been helpful to remember that it’s not giving up to change my priorities.

About The Shoes

I have been an admirer of Darzah’s shoes and particular cause for several years, so I was delighted to receive a pair of their Tatreez Oxfords in Camel to review.

As I mentioned in my Gift Guide, tatreez is a style of traditional Palestinian embroidery, and this motif is meant to evoke a Carnation (“Quranfl” in Arabic). Carnations are “late-bloomers,” arriving near the end of spring, just like the green leaves in these photos are “late-fallers.” And good for them! The meritocracy tells us to stay in line, and yet nature – and make no mistake, we are part of nature – insists on its own time.

Darzah’s collection of fair trade shoes are made by primarily women artisans in the West Bank, and their work is a program of Child’s Cup Full, a non-profit women’s economic empowerment initiative based in Zababdeh. Leather is high-quality and locally sourced, the insole has light padding, and the sole is reinforced with rubber for better traction (and all-weather wear). I found that I needed to spend some time breaking in the heel, but otherwise the shoes run true to size and are comfortable.

How is your life going? Do you feel that sense of transition that so often arrives in the late fall or are things feeling steady?

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