Whew! It has been one long, emotionally exhausting week. Like many Americans, I've been in a bit of a funk since the presidential election results rolled in early Wednesday morning, overcome with feelings of disappointment, doubt, and even fear about the future of our country.

When I was a little girl, I was told I could be anything I wanted to be if I worked hard and put my mind to it. I was raised to become a strong, intelligent, and independent woman. I was taught that all humans deserve to be treated with respect, no matter their race, gender, or sexuality. It absolutely breaks my heart as I watch all of this hatred spread across our nation on both sides of the political spectrum. After all these years, why have we not yet found a way to get along; to co-exist and treat each other as equals? 

The outcome of this election has forced me to take a step back from the daily grind of life and reflect. It has reminded me that we only spend a short time on this Earth, and that what we do with that time is up to us. It has reaffirmed my decision to make the shift to slow fashion and pursue a more sustainable lifestyle. It has taught me that now is the time for us to be #StrongerTogether. To speak our minds. To stand up for what is right. To make a difference in our community, our country, and our planet. 

We believe that well designed clothing can be made without compromising people or the planet.
— Hanna, Founder of Sotela

One American company making a difference is California-based clothing designer, Sotela. After dedicating several years to learning about American manufacturing and sustainable apparel, Hanna Baror-Padilla launched Sotela to offer quality, affordable women's clothing options that don't compromise people or the planet.

In addition to only using environmentally-friendly fabrics, Sotela is committed to providing Americans with job opportunities. All of their garments are manufactured at a local factory that maintains a safe, clean environment and pays legal wages to its employees. 

Sotela's Cocoon dress has quickly become a closet hero as I continue to grow my ethical wardrobe. It's constructed out of an eco-friendly, sustainable tencel fabric that looks AND feels like silk, and is low-maintenance as far as laundry goes. Hello, machine-washable! The shape of the Cocoon dress is simple and elegant, beautifully draping in all the right places so you can feel comfortable and confident every time you put it on; a must for the #SotelaEverydayWoman.