Think Bar at Expo West

As regular readers, know we’re a bit hard-headed when it comes to reporting on our suddenly hot and trendy industry. After all, to those of us who have spent decades trying to create a sustainable economy, the LOOK MA OUR COMPANY MADE A SOLAR WAREHOUSE or HEY WE BUY WIND POWER sort of marketing makes us wonder if soon enough, we’ll just be one more part of America’s over-hyped and under-caring consumer driven culture. 

So we have to admit, we weren’t expecting to be impressed by a fashion show, even it was for a good cause. Even though we know thinkproducts CEO Lizanne Falsetto is about as smart as they get (we’ll be doing a piece next month on her leadership at the company). we didn’t think this thing would be special.Thanks to some persistent and good-natured PR work, we made sure to get there even though our feet were hurting and we really wanted to nap. But our skepticism wore off quickly, even before downing a couple of bottles of Guayaki to get our mojo back. And while some organic tequila from 4 Copas didn’t hurt our enthusiasm either, this event was actually something quite special.

Not only were we moved by the presentation (something that doesn’t happen to our wizened spirits at trade shows), but we also scribbled in our note pad ‘Why aren’t more folks doing things like this…it seems that this event should be a model for the industry.’

Designed to create awareness of women’s cancers and the impact of toxic exposure in everything from clothing, cosmetics and cleaning supplies, the event was a terrific moment, especially as our industry faces more and more big money crossroads over how to combine passion while growing profits.

Created in partnership with the Susan G. Komen for the Cure , the event was both a fundraiser, an opportunity to promote awareness of how healthy choices can help prevent disease, as well as aid those currently dealing with cancer or other illnesses.

Now if you’re wondering about the fashion show, let’s set the record straight. Fact is, this wasn’t a fashion show as you know it, especially when in Southern California. It combined themes that are really antithetical to the fashion world, where beauty is all important and always essential, regardless of the cost.

Beauty is more than skin deep was the theme, and along with honoring the courage and beauty of cancer survivors, it was tied-in to educating people about making healthier choices in their lives.

The show’s sponsors included twenty industry leaders including Seventh Generation, Ecover, Nature’s Way, Rainbow Light and Whole Foods Market as well as a large number of eco-friendly fashion designers. Cancer survivors walked the runway, while yerba mate guru David Karr and his sidekick Patrick Lee were passing out drinks. The large crowd enjoyed a great show that was more than just fun.

It gave us hope that as the venture capitalists roll into our town, things won’t go the way of Madison Avenue and Wall Street. Not that there’s anything wrong with investors, it’s just that too much of the time their money puts principles in the back seat while spreadsheets take the driver’s seat.

So kudos to Falsetto, a former haute couture fashion model and business executive who seems to make all the right moves. Whether it’s walking down runway in Milan, revamping a company whose product line lost its cache, or creating an event in an industry that’s at a crossroads.

For more about the event and the efforts it supports you can watch the think VITALITY Community documentary detailing the event and efforts to support women with cancer and actually everyone seeking vitality in their lives.

Thirty-three-year-old breast cancer survivor Stefanie Larue, pictured above with thinkproducts CEO Falsetto, eloquently shares her story in the film. And that beautiful pink and green gown she’s wearing is made of thinkproducts wrappers designed by green fashion designer Deborah Lindquist. How cool is that?


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