She Comes in Colors Everywhere

March 15, 2014

IMG_7329IMG_7477IMG_7422IMG_7537 IMG_7467IMG_7544IMG_7527 IMG_7534 IMG_7551

She comes in colors everywhere

She combs her hair 

She’s like a rainbow 

Coming, colors in the air 


She comes in colors

She’s a Rainbow ~ Rolling Stones

I love this song so much. So much fun and innocence in one song, inspiring freedom and self expression.

It was the theme song to one of our recent ventures to the Perth Hills. After a glorious day at the beach, we drove up to the hills to watch the sun setting over the city. Still in my neon popping bikini with my stash pouch filled with jewels and crystals, we decided to go on a little hike and snap some photos. It was incredible as we walked along this dirt path and suddenly it opened up to a sky scape of distant city, an old mined out quarry and never-ending bush lands. My inner child was thoroughly excited as I danced around, climbing boulders, taking in the breathtaking views and magical late evening light. I took some time to cleanse my crystals in the rainbow light and centre myself in this beautiful sacred space. In awe and wonder, overlooking the city, I felt moved by the enormity and interconnectedness of everything. I fell in love with mother earth even more than I thought possible. I was overwhelmed with gratitude for this life, for the ability to wander and explore, to sit and revel in the light, to watch the ants crawling by, and see my city from afar, all lit up by the glow of the setting sun.

This post was inspired by the beauty of colour. By the magic of a sunset sky and the golden glow that emanates from the trees and shrubs as the sun bids us farewell. By the rainbow streams of light that filter through the trees and the magnificent green orbs of light. And the main star ~ my brightly coloured, intricately woven Mayan huipil bag from Ethicollective.

This incredible ‘Hanneli’ bag has fast become my must have weekend adventure bag for all my props and jewels. Handmade in Guatemala, on a backstrap loom, under fair-trade conditions, this piece is full of inspiration, just like the woman behind Ethicollective. I was so intrigued by this wonderful company that I asked the very beautiful soul, Aleta, if she would share a little about Ethicollective. I’m beyond excited to be able to bring this beautifully honest and heart filling interview to you guys.It gives me goosebumps every time I read it :)

What are greatest passions in life?

My greatest passions in life are my 5 1/2 year old son Jackson, fashion, traveling and exposing Jackson to the amazing creativity and cultures of this beautiful world.

How did Ethicollective come to be?
Ethicollective came about really just by listening to myself and taking that little dreamer voice out of the back of my head and paying attention to it. In 2012 I was two years into my business development role with a government organization and feeling really uninspired due to the absence of creativity in my role. It was a pretty unsatisfying role that required a fair amount of travel and I was also running a small hand made sterling silver jewellery business and getting far too few hours sleep a night filling orders. 
I’ve been a single parent since my son was very young so I went back to work when my son was 2 1/2 years old and I’ve always resented having to do that. Just prior to this my son’s behaviour started to change dramatically and there were a number of worrying health issues popping up which we know now were totally related to food allergies. So I was working, worrying about my son’s health, creating into the hours of the morning, traveling for work and being perpetually in a state of stress about the future.
By the end of 2012 I was extremely unhappy in my job, hating the world for not being able to see my son for the hours of the day I dearly wanted and generally feeling trapped by my circumstances. Possibly right before I think I would have lost my sanity, I decided to take 12 months leave without pay and take my son backpacking. I’ve traveled before a little but we had never been overseas before so it was really like taking a jump off the deep end and just hoping to float!
The two of us spent almost half a year in Thailand and Nepal and a little time in Singapore followed by Lego Land in Malaysia for his 5th birthday.
I knew really soon after leaving Australia that I couldn’t possibly return to an uncreative role so creating my dream job was the goal. I have always dreamt of having a little boutique, being a couture designer and traveling on a whim to exotic, textile and craft rich countries! I collected quite an alarming about of traditional Tibetan and Hmong textiles, Afghan beading and Nepalese sterling silver but was always limited by thinking of how much it was going to cost to send home to Australia! 
Nepal is the most inspiring country I have ever traveled to and it was here that I decided I needed an online store.
We returned to Australia last year and I have been focusing on healing with natural whole foods, more sleep and moderate exercise but most importantly no stress. Overall it’s about being diligent with these things and adopting them as now who we are, not just a trial run like people often do with fad diets.  Being kinder to myself hasn’t been easy because by listening to yourself you tend to hear all the negative rhetoric you like to ignore and have typically numbed as we all tend to do through one activity or another. The upshot to this is you get to process them, decide whether they are helpful or a hinderance to your growth and then let them go. It’s been nice to just let go and trust my intuition about what I need and want my life to be. I finally feel I owe it to myself and my son to listen to that inner voice.
 What are your dreams for Ethicollective?
My dreams for Ethicollective are to be able to travel the world a number of times a year with Jackson, sourcing amazing fair trade and ethical bags, jewelry, textiles and homewares while also working on my couture label Aleta Lucia that I will be releasing soon. The opening range for this label was designed completely in Nepal in my folded up soft covered, tattered diary and inspired heavily by traditional Tibetan weaving so I owe a lot to Nepal!
Supporting fair-trade and ethical production is important to me as predominantly in the textiles and traditional crafts industries, the workers are women. I feel as an educated Western woman I am in a position to reach out to other women who are less fortunate and support practices that ensure they are treated and remunerated in a fair and ethical way. I feel there is a long way to go but I hope to be able to help the women and their offspring by supporting fair- trade and ideally in the future, establishing Ethicollective industries in many countries.

OH WOW Aleta I absolutely LOVE you and everything you are creating. I can’t wait to see all your dreams unfold! You have my full support and deepest gratitude. Our world is blessed by your vision and the work you are doing.

You can find out more about Ethicollective here and of course shop their incredible range of ethically sourced fair-trade bags/clutches. Check them out on Facebook and Instagram to see all the Ethicollective awesomeness and be first to know about the upcoming new range!!! Exciting!!!

With love and gratitude,

Helen xx

Photography ~ Bobby Bense, Helen Janneson Bense

Model/Stylist ~ Helen Janneson Bense

Location ~ Perth Hills, Western Australia

Outfit Details

‘Hanneli’ Huipil Overnighter ~ Ethicollective

Scallop bikini ~ Free People

‘She Comes in Colours’ Stash pouch ~ Sugar high Love stoned X Samudra via Gypsy Stone

Healing Spirit hill tribe necklace, Turkish shield rings ~ Child of Wild

Crystals ~ Torchlight Jewelry, Ono Jewellery

Thunderbird Pendant ~ Hunter Gatherer Jewellery

Rings ~ Lost Lover, Nik Dreamer, Vintage

Cuffs ~ St. Eve Jewelry, Spell Designs

Shorts ~ One Teaspoon

Spun scarf ~ Subtle Luxury



All rights reserved © GypsyLovinLight · Theme by Blogmilk + Coded by Brandi Bernoskie