Thoughtful Style: Made-to-Order from The Kit

The Kit Review + More Cup of Jo Photos

Continuing my slow recap of the photoshoot I did with Julia Bri for Cup of Jo’s Week of Outfits series, today I’m sharing a fun pattern clash.

Last December, I used some Christmas money to try out The Kit. Founder Daniel Vosovic was on Project Runway in its 2nd season. He launched The Kit in 2017.

Leah sits on bench wearing a multicolor long sleeve top with checkered purse, jeans, and Birkenstock clogs

About The Kit’s Production Model

The Kit is vertically integrated. This means that design, production, and fulfillment are all done in the same facility.

One major positive of vertical integration is that it builds greater accountability into the supply chain, because it’s easier to track materials, labor, and facilities management throughout the process. Another advantage is a reduced carbon footprint since components don’t need to be shipped across the world.

The Kit is also made-to-order, with a 15-25 day production time. And all products are dyed from the same base fabric, reducing fabric waste.

Leah sits on bench wearing a multicolor long sleeve top with checkered purse, jeans, and Birkenstock clogs

My Review of The Kit

I ordered a few items from The Kit, but only ended up keeping this shirt and one in another style.

The tops I kept are made in a super soft, stretch cotton. I did need to go down a size from the recommended size on the size chart, so I would recommend going with your smaller size in any of their stretch items.

Even though these items are digitally printed, they are pretty color fast and shouldn’t bleed in the wash. I always lay flat to dry to keep them from stretching out.

The price point is reasonable in my book, and the return policy is good, even though items are made-to-order.

Leah looks off to right side of frame wearing blue glasses and multicolor shirt

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I paired my top with a Baggu bag (so lightweight and conveniently sized), Madewell curvy jeans, and Birkenstock Boston clogs.

See my Madewell Curvy review for more information about the jeans.

Leah walks wearing a multicolor long sleeve top with checkered purse, jeans, and Birkenstock clogs

Life Lately

In other news, I have Covid again. As a result, I had to stay home the entire last week of work. This is the third time I’ve had it in a year, so the doctor recommended Paxlovid. I had some Long Covid symptoms the last two times, so I’m hoping this medication will fend them off.

Things have been busy: I was out of town for a couple weekends, my grandpa died 3 weeks ago, we had family in town, and priest life is slightly chaotic, as usual.

I completed my first year of my two-year curacy, which means it’s job application season. Lots to do, lots to discern. While we love Houston, it doesn’t necessarily feel like a long term possibility. We’ll see what doors open for us in the coming months.

Reflections on Blogging

Last but not least, I just made some pretty aggressive changes to the blog template and backend. Google has made some significant algorithm and analytics changes in past months, which has wrecked my page views. Plus, I haven’t been as active on here, so it’s made me want to phase out some of the paid subscriptions that have historically helped me run the site.

It seems like so many of us hit our mid-30s and run out of capacity and interest to keep blogging. I wouldn’t say I’m disinterested, it’s just that the world has changed and I have, too.

It was much easier to blog optimistically ten years ago, when I was young and naive and the world’s problems seemed solvable. The growing urgency of climate change, socio-political horrors in the U.S., and widespread access to (mis)information leave me feeling hopeless so often.

It feels hollow to keep cheerleading sustainable fashion, when it so often feels like my cheerleading has done little to bear out systems change. I’m working to find little glimpses of hope in my personal and spiritual life so that I can actually make claims I believe in.

Hope y’all are well! – Leah

Leah Wise

Leah Wise is the founder of StyleWise Blog. She has been writing, speaking, and consulting on sustainable fashion, the fair trade and secondhand supply chain, and digital marketing for over ten years. An Episcopal priest, Leah holds a B.A. in Religion from Florida State University and an M.Div. from Yale Divinity School. When not working, you can find her looking for treasures at the thrift store.

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  1. Leah, I have been reading your blog since you started it. In 2013, I was in seminary, taking a class on the 8th Century Prophetic Literature of the Old Testament. I had been reading Amos very closely the week that the Rana Plaza collapsed. I was very convicted by God’s anger toward those who mistreat the poorest., selling the needy for a pair of sandals (Amos 2:6-7), etc, My husband and I vowed to buy fair trade for 5 years, and have been strict about our (and our three kids’ now) consumption ever since, buying used or fair trade clothes almost exclusively for the last ten years (We have moved more to the slow fashion approach that you have written about a couple of years ago). Your blog has been very encouraging to me, since you are one of the only faith-based blogger I have found on fair trade. I wish more Christ followers would see that God does care about what we support with our money and that mindless excessive consumption is contrary to the message of the Old Testament. and of Christ. I appreciate your taking up the fight in a more public way and being there as an encouragement all these years.

    1. This means so much to me, Shelby. And I love the Hebrew Prophets so much: their righteous anger, their frustration with God, their turmoil, and their hopefulness. Maybe they’re the example I need right now as I deal with my own set of frustrations and questions in the face of so much injustice. I do think there’s something to be said about the monastic traditions, especially those like the Order of St. Francis, who take a vow of simplicity. That commitment to a rule of life might be a good connection point for Christians who don’t seem to understand why their faith should impact consumption habits.

  2. I know it may feel like you are not doing much, but you have helped me find some companies with good labor practices. This takes a lot of work and is frustrating, so I really appreciate the effort you have put into it.

    I am sorry that you have had COIVD three times in one year. Ugh. But I know several people whose long COVID symptoms eased after Paxlovid, so hope the same is true for you.

    1. Thank you so much, Susan. It’s helpful to put things in perspective and realize that constant growth isn’t necessary to make a difference. A big reason I opted for Paxlovid this time around was the research that suggested it could reduce Long Covid, so I’m hoping that’s the case for me!

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