A Blog of Many Colours

A Blog of Many Colours

Musings ramblings and thoughts from within


About My Blog

As an artist and creative force I have always relished the potency of creating and expressing the beauty and natural world I grew up in. As the years rolled by I begun to comprehend how I was and how I was becoming within, had everything to do with that expression. Thus as I create, express that journey I recognise that my story is a story, not so much in content but context, that holds similarities for us all.

Thus in the process of sharing I may help enlighten and illumine for others, their own journey towards developing the being of creative force we all hold within. I hope you find it enjoyable and helpful. I know I certainly will!

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Journeys beginning
Is this the Journey’s End?

or the beginning?

Dirty Business with Old Clothes

Throw away society or conscious sharing

Unravelling a dissertation

It would be Nice!


Getting more than you bargained for

Education is a system of imposed ignorance

Pushing things to the limit

Charity Recycling of conscience

Getting out and serious

The filthy hand of Western Slavery
The Filthy Hand of Western Slavery

The continuation of a Master Plan

Slave labour
Does Modern Slavery exist?

Why it is important to talk about it?

Common Purpose
Slave LAbour the New Old Norm

Do we meekly accept  as Normal?

Welcome to Virve Viigand's Blog
Hello! Welcome to the Blog

My rambles, thoughts and constructive critique on  building my ethos into material form

Unravelling a dissertation
Unravelling Questions for my Dissertation

A self enquiry into direction

Pulling the threads

I am not the slave of Darkness I am the slave of Light

Rendering Deficit into Asset

Can you imagine a world where slavery is the currency of trade

Charity shops
Charity, Recycling or Relieving our Conscience

Charity starts at home - why must it?


By Virve posted April 19 2021

Through the dissertation and my research, I was led to several unintentional sides of the textile and fashion industry, such as forced and slave labour, sweat shops, dumping old clothing in landfill and no real joined up recycling. The issues evolving from the fast fashion trend also opened up a log jam of buffers preventing any cohesive and collective solution creation concerning the environmental and human cost to such manic overdrive.

"Charity starts at home" – Anon

It has brought me to a point where I realise, I had a rosy vision of the whole industry, believing like many that there was enough corporate responsibility that could take care of its workers in far flung places. The reality was that nothing of the sort was taking place. In fact, the dereliction of duty and care ended on the shores of the UK.

I have been made aware as to how irresponsible so much of the industry is and the selfish attitudes have little care for those that they can never do without.

With this dire scenario, and predicted growth expanding in not only population but desire for even more consumption in the future, there is little hope that major changes needed in both consumption and lifestyle will have any will to be implemented.

Having said that, experienced these dark outlooks in the research, I am also aware that the only real solution scenario is root and branch change. The model we have all relied on for centuries is one specifically built on the slave to master model. Our whole existence has been one of them and us, a small group of privileged, moneyed class using the energy and human resources to fuel and grow their wealth.

2,300 years ago, in this land what became to be known as the Common Law was established. This recognised all humans to have equal and equitable rights, being born sovereign and free. For centuries this created an ordered society. For the last near on 1,000 years we have been under the yoke of an authority that has taken that natural right from us all. Today we are governed by the most pernicious of extensions to that authority, the corporatocracy. Whether we believe it or not it is this monster that has land grabbed resources across the natural world and diminished the role of humans in that exercise.

The resultant slavery most of us find ourselves under ranges far more widely than the industry’s labour workforce and their living conditions. Thus, to extricate each and every one of us from this paradigm is essential for any real change to take place.

It is with the developing awareness through having suffered under the obvious fraud on today’s so- called pandemic, that people are awakening to the heel they have been subjected to for so long. Common Law is the law of the land that covers almost 170 countries in the world. To bring that back in its rightful place would demand that all industries that create injury or harm to any sentient being would have to desist.

This means that all slave labour, working conditions and treatment of workforces would be disallowed to trade or have any effect on getting their business or products to the public. For instance, all manufacture outside of the British Isles would be banned from entering these shores. This alone would make bad practice reassess itself if wished to remain viable.

This may seem to be an impossibility, yet there are lawful cases being brought at this moment that will enable this to be established. It will also enable production to return to local placement, for each one to be fairly paid and the profit incentive for the few to be disestablished.

Innovation of entirely new materials has always been an option, yet because of the self-interest and hold the corporates have, these beneficial modalities have not been able to fully flourish and develop. There are so many solutions to supply without hurt, to develop without strain on people and planet that most all of the dire future predictions, naturally built on old system modelling would be history in the face of such innovation.

The need to move away from what is ostensibly a system of servitude is never more important as it is now. Development of fabrics that use no water, that even evolve from what we use naturally, without chemical or man-made implementation of toxic introductions, give rise to new creative solutions waiting to be discovered.

Education is a prime mover in this direction. It is something that has never truly been exercised, as indoctrination is a far better word to describe what we have been fed.

We may have set ourselves up to be petty gods of our own home, Earth, yet Nature in all her unknown resources and offerings holds solutions we would be best to learn from rather than pillage, before we make it too late. The humility that comes with such change, affording evolution is well overdue and will be a joyful next phase, as we evolve into solution-based lives built on the recognition that we are all equal and sovereign. 

Is This The Journey's End?

By Virve posted April 13 2021

This blog started out months back with my sharing the tip toe steps towards a degree in Textiles and Hard Surfaces. I did not wish to merely get proficient in the technical skills of the art, I wanted to dig deep, find out what made the whole thing possible.

"The end is the beginning" – Ancient Wisdom

Yet when we look at how charity, in the form of charity shops are constructed, do we see that manifested in its fullness? Hardly, yet not entirely devoid of it. Thus in the context of the fashion and textile industry this branch of its existence appeals for investigation and rooting out the mindset and raison d’être.

One example I can take and one whose name, for convenience, I will keep anonymous, has been set up through four charity shop outlets and one thousand five hundred textile recycling banks and home collects. Its objective is to raise funds to fight global poverty by collecting unwanted clothes in order to reuse and resell.

One glaring example here stands out – that of wishing to fight global poverty, yet if we do not set out to identify the core causes of global poverty and address these the objective of ploughing resources and finance into a deep hole that can never be filled by these actions, it becomes counterproductive.

Within the realm of my personal experience with charity shops, that of working in them and of using their resources, my observations are that a huge amount of textiles, fabrics and clothes are discarded, in preference to them being reused in other contexts in the home. It is also sad that so much fabric and clothing still end up in landfill or reprocessing.

Another apparent anomaly is that many charity shops are creations of corporate entities. The administration of such set ups as always creams off much of the alleged donations, well before they are able to land in their target end file. There is a large virtual signalling by these entities to be ‘seen’ as do gooders while with their other hand they are carving away at elements that are ultimately part of the problem. Such miserable PR stunts, propagandised superficiality, not only confuses the minds of ordinary folk but also continues the lie that “we are all in it together and are helping save the planet”. Such nonsense is so counterproductive as to mind play the general population into feeling they are “doing the right thing”.

Although I cannot supply my own specific solutions, I feel that the creative collective mindset, once admitting to its part of being part of the problem can then begin to construct ways and modalities that reverse this dead end circular activity. This would come from a major reset of mindsets, a stimulation of creative endeavour with tin the scope of the individual, that by its very effect on the small then expands, through force of numbers to the greater arena. When a mindset, no matter how minute, expresses itself, it creates evolution, expansion and foundation. In practice this is experienced by others. It then inspires others to act and do likewise, thus the expanding circle of influence grows positively and creatively. Although a general outline this principle has to be the foundation of any creative endeavour. It is potent, productive and change making. 

Dirty Business with Old Clothes 

By Virve posted March 12, 2021

We see a proliferation of charity shops all over the land, each exalting their path to finding new homes for said goods, raising money for X,Y,Z, charity and generally offering a way out for your almost passive consideration of those worse off that yourself. A sort of High Street confessional. Yet you can bet your bottom dollar few ask as to the journey these throw aways take. Charity boxes, charity bags for, in our case, clothing and garments all sorts. We blithely believe they end up at the hut door of an impoverished African family or a much-needed garment for each of the Syrian refugees thrown onto the Ferris wheel of chance between Africa and Lampedusa or another harbour of ultimate refuge and despair. Yet very few realise that most of the cast offs end up on conveyor belts to private companies.

"Charity may start at home but ends up in the dumpster" – Anon

These companies take the bundles of clothing and attire and ship them out to Nigeria, Bangladesh and other way out of the way and sight places. Here they are sold on to middle men who then resell them into the markets of towns and cities. Monetised all the way.

Shockingly, as seen in Tanzania, this ‘trade’ has had the unwanted effect of killing off internal textile and fashion businesses. I mean how joined up is that?

Tanzania is one of the biggest customers of second hand clothing in Africa. The counry imports more than 20 tonnes of recycled clothes a month.

From asking people on the street where they feel the clothing goes, they report people like the Red Cross are avidly collecting and distributing. This is as far from the truth as it gets. It is the private sector that picks up, monetises and walks away with fat pockets.

Truth is that wherever they are collected from they all arrive at the same depots. Here they are shipped to Africa, Middle East and the Far East. The shocking reality is that we have the Red Cross admitting they do not have resources to repackage and deliver clothes to depots. The economics of it are not worth the bother. That tells you about the corporatisation of the charity sector. Profit over people. This sort of handing over is many decade old, so not at all an ‘in the moment’ financial decision.

It is tragic that in the days where so many are devastatingly poor, where the disparity between rich and poor is so great and where the will to help one’s neighbour is at an all-time low, due to compassion fatigue, we witness the overt killing and maiming of those we so easily could help out of the poverty trap.

I feel this is yet another disgusting trait of fashion for the fashionistas and forget about those who broke their backs and hearts to stay alive bring us our desires. It certainly does not make me proud of this industry but infuses me with a passion to change things as much as I can. 


By Virve posted March 15, 2021

It is all very well to speak grandly about creating new eco models of best practice, environmentally sound production levels and of bringing ‘awareness’ to hidden and ongoing worst practices, yet when words come to actions do we honestly see this in action to a degree that illustrates commitment to the plans.

"The actions of men are the best interpreters of their thoughts" – John Locke

I have, over my research, come to believe that most of the companies and corporate entities running the flag up the fashion and textile pole are presently still far more concerned with profit and end purchaser capture than any real efforts to make marked improvement with the initial production side.

This word salad of PR hype and chest beating mea culpa they portray is as shallow as their care and attention to the actual problems, the precise needs of the production and the people who actually create their products. You could say this is the typical worker master relationship writ global, yet unless actions are taken it is all for nought.

I shall therefore look at three separate entities in the industry and see how and what they are doing to make things actual, factual and positive for change.

So I shall look at Marks and Spencer, ASOS and Joshi Yamamoto, who runs a family based fashion business, unlike the two former conglomerates.

Marks and Spencer have been an icon of serving terrific value and quality across the board. Their fashion products have become household must haves and are praised for their reliability and quality. What may not be so public is how and where they source their production.

M&S has been around for at least 137 years. Its present reincarnation as a 21st century shopping icon has been the work of several managing directors, who have pulled the revenues of this emporium up to £10 million in profits and operating revenues of £255 million. Employing 78,000 people, its 959 stores across the UK are close to most of its inhabitants.

M&S are one of the major practitioners of the ‘fast fashion’ ethic, offering very well priced items that are then subject to discard after short use or change of style. Fast fashion, a term used to describe end users’ short-lived relationship with their purchases and subsequent disposal, has been identified as one of the problems in production.

When it comes to M&S and their relationship to sweat shop scandals, the last few years have lit up this insidious secret relationship and support. In 2016 a BBC Panorama investigation highlighted the use of Syrian refugees being exploited in Turkey, producing lines of M&S clothing. In 1999 a previous investigation showed how the abuse and use of Indonesian children were allegedly earning pittance for producing products that then end sold for many times the production costs. In spite of denials from M&S, which frankly was the normal route of claiming innocence or ignorance, further abuses were to come in the years following that showing no contrition nor learning lessons, that vacuous phrase.

M&S have most consistently echoed the hollow phrases of – “ethical trading is fundamental to M&S, …… We take these allegations very seriously and if we find that the integrity of the brand has been brought into disrepute, we will deal with it”

Such much banded words are meaningless against little or no action. I would question directly, what is the precise integrity of such a company, where they even allow any production ethics, to be as non-existent as is currently displayed in their business.

As much as I would happily purchase from their food halls, as for their clothing and much vaunted knickers, I would boycott them until there is a marked improvement in their production values.

As a score of ethic value I also would mark them as 4/10.

ASOS is a national British online company that sells internationally, only online. Founded in 2000, by four business partners in London. Subsequently the founders, sold their interests in the company some couple of years ago to corporate asset interests that included Capital Group, Camelot Capital Partners and BestSeller A/S.

In 2016 a Buzfeed article alleged poor working conditions at an ASOS in Barnsley, Yorkshire. Then in April 2020 the company was again accused by their workers union of playing Russian roulette with people’s lives. All of these accusations were vehemently denied in the usual vacuous terminology. Most recently the company took advantage of the crash and burn effect that the Covid fraud has had on small, medium and well-known businesses and purchased some top names that have gone into administration, such as Top Shop, Top Man and Miss Selfridge. Since ASOS is now owned by huge corporate interests it is not difficult to see the plan where such bricks and mortar businesses are being acquired, through misfortune and falling foul of no trading possibilities.

If this is happening in the UK, I find it very hard to believe that care for production values in their outsourcing is at a level hardly above zero. It has never been thus far shown that a corporation cares compassionately about labour forces or indentured labour.

With such noises coming from so close to home, it has yet to be established by these owners that their attention across the production board is an improvement. I would also look forward to seeing viable trading windows being represented by their recent high street purchases as anything more that a mere peacock for their brand.

Interesting to note that the increased profits get ASOS to brag their revenue in 2020 to be over £3.17 billion. You might have thought with that amount trading, they would make sure their workers got at least the minimum wage. I shall not be holding my breath on that one!

I can safely award this particular corporate with a score of 3/10 and that is pushing it.

These examples cited paint a miserable picture when it comes to production standards as well as worker care and attention. Yet all is not doom and gloom. There are, as there have always been, those that in spite of the hardship, difficulty to compete, have never made it an obstacle too far. Yohji Yamamoto is a paragon of these types. The Poet of Black, as he calls himself has developed over more than 40 years a style and approach that can truly be called unique.

Yamamoto is known for his avant-garde spirit in his clothing. Having set out to make men’s clothes for women, his styles caught on and became hugely popular first in his home country of Japan but naturally found its way to fashion centre Paris. His collections have reached a wider audience through his collaborations with major well-known brands such as Hermes. Yet all along his style is Yamamoto.
In an interview recently, Yamamoto admitted he hated fashion. An extraordinary admission form one of the leading artists of fashion. Yet behind that statement is something altogether different. What it is is his loathing for the what’s new, what’s next, what feelings the customers want. This freneticism he finds too busy. He states concisely that from the beginning of his creative drive he wished to protect the clothes from fashion. Thgis idea of protection is core to his creations. He wishes to protect women and their bodies from something. Such an ethic could no way abuse or lack correlation with the whole process of creating attire.

It is echoed, this sentiment, in his use of family factories, based in Japan and honoured as an intrinsic way of expressing the whole process. Artisans and age-old experts in clothing have also perpetuated the cycle from beginning to end. I find this focus, respect and honouring a pivotel cog in the way and the feeling of his creations impress on the end purchaser.

It was the famed film director Wim Wenders that said on first wearing one of Yohji’s garments – “I am fascinated how it feels both new and old at the same time and how protected I feel wearing it.”

Fast fashion to Yamamoto is wasting fashion. It takes the art out of it and creates voids that were there before. In the very spirit that makes Yamamoto stand outside the crowd, he admits it created space for him to work and operate in. As long as there are those young ones who question and doubt the present trends and somewhere within them yearn for the spaces between, that he populates, he feels happy and with purpose to carry on.

His passion for “Made in Japan” is a purposeful reason to make sure his creations are home made. That they are also made with expertise, with no reason to outsource, feels in my opinion the very best example of how integrous this man is and hoe essential others need to be courageous enough to start their own journey along these lines.

It is definitively a truism that corporate mindsets will never be able to match these levels of commitment and devotion, and it is in that very space that fashion retains its art. If we ever wish to retain and cultivate the essence of what fashion and textile can rise to then the cutting down on the corporate production line, the serving the local and national community is the way to go. However sadly it will involve working to change the more, more, more mentality that has ravaged so much in all our lives. 

Your Jeans Sir/Madam!

By Virve posted February 25, 2021

I want you for one little moment to place your latte on the table, divest yourself of the beer in hand and sit back, take a few calming breathes to settle and then imagine yourself in your favourite branded labelled store.

The salesperson comes to you with your newly purchased hip fashion jeans. You look upon them with a satisfaction of having yet again made a purchase to satisfy your best wants. As you are about to turn and exit your helpful salesperson says “Excuse me Sir/Madam, you also have this that comes in the price!” 

"Jeans and Water to go!" – Never a slogan used

You turn to be confronted with a receptacle holding 8,000 litres of water. Aghast you ask:
“Really? You mean I get this for free with my jeans?
“Yes, you see to make your jeans it takes 8,000 litres of water, so along with the stiches buttons and all you also get the water.”

It is inconceivable, unbelievable but true. Would this be enough to awaken you to the true costs involved in making you happy for a little while? You see back in Jakarta, Bangladesh, India, Vietnam and many other places around the globe, water is a rare and sought-after commodity. It does not flow out of a tap in the kitchen and bring clean, reasonably healthy liquid. Usually, it comes in the form of toxic overflow from the jean factory. The stuff of ill health, poisoned, filthy flow. But you would have no idea of all that, the suffering, slave labour created marvel design of the latest much marketed line in relax wear.

Oh, yes, they may crow as to how all their products and production line are moving towards an eco, sustainable product base, yet the reality is that their outsourced miserably treated workers hold not one nanosecond in the minds of the greed driven proprietors, sitting in their Western offices, dining out at the most expensive restaurants and flying off here and there to the latest board meetings and weekend jollies. All the time the struggle to make home in cardboard and tin roofed shanty huts, surrounded by the sewers and faeces-infested mud paths in downtown Djakarta or Tirupur is the norm for those paid pennies a week to create your dream jeans.

If you were more informed as to exactly want went into the creation of yet another fashion statement, would you be stirred to take the action you can and reassess the necessity to have yet more clothing hanging in your ward, at the expense and exploitation of others just like you, human being, under the yoke of bonded or slave labour? Because, as much as it might be too much to contemplate, this is the naked truth of an industry exploiting others, you could say, your brothers and sisters.

There must come a time in your life in all our lives where we stand up and say ‘No More!’ If we cannot do that and make sacrifices, such as stop buying out of addiction, use second-hand clothes, others’ throw outs and also demand the corporate interests that use your easy addictive patterns to increase their profits and exploit to the depth the cost of materials. Change carries costs but never as expensive as the lives of others.

Think about it! 

Inordinate Pressure

By Virve posted February 15, 2021

Any degree course is challenging, rightly so as we are meant to push ourselves beyond our self -created limits. To grow and expand our creative expression is where any artist, designer or innovator wishes to go. Yet when these urges and potentials are muzzled, it becomes a challenge not only too far, but also counter indicative to the development of creativity.

"What can be locked is just our movement. If we lock our lives it would be our own decision" – Vineet Raj Kapoor

I have found the nearly three years spent on my chosen area Textiles and Hard Surfaces, in the first two years an excellent challenge, yet in the third year all this dropped away with the isolation policies, remote working and the downright idiotic, constantly changing diktats that were piled onto the University campus.
Interaction with tutors, face to face, is an essential part of any course. As much as there is some clever technology, this no way makes up for such face to face. It seems the binding to remote teaching takes the soul out of art. Perhaps for those that are neither old enough to have experienced what was before nor appreciating the benefits of human contact, it might seem irrelevant. However, humans were not created to be robotic, remote or contactless. Yet today this aberration has seemingly been put in place to dehumanise us all.

Practically, the difficulties of utilising the libraries, the work rooms, the kit we needed has caused so much stress, anxiety over and above the normal. The abnormal conditions under which we all are asked to operate and be creative have been hurdles, never before encountered. There seems to have been little or no consideration given to structure something that works cohesively.

This is inevitable when the top directing conditions is in such chaos, uttering diktats one day that completely go against itself the next. One reason to understand the utter fiction of the whole. Many more far more solid proof of that has made the injunctions and orders emanating from the University look like a fool’s circus rather than higher education.

The course is not cheap and will cost us all much in the years to come, yet those laying down the conditions and rules around the education continue to pull in rich salaries without accountability.

I would not wish this process of inordinate pressure on any future student and feel the way this has been part of our life and education, will, in future be looked back on as a very dark and miserable example of humans being in the least bit intelligent or inquisitive, as to how they have been led down this harmful acceptance of spurious times.

It most certainly be an example for those that pass with whatever glory, of steadfast strength, creative endeavour and resilience against the worst of times. 

Journeys of Research

By Virve posted February 6th 2021

Part of the delight in research is getting out, visiting great archives, museums and galleries where specimens and examples that illustrate your search for meaning reside.

When that coincides with the single greatest heist on human life, by way of a planned demic, other tools in the box need withdrawing, such as devious civil disobedience against a totalitarian lockdown.

"Highly organised research is guaranteed to produce nothing new" – Frank Herbert

One such sortie was in November last year and the destination was the V&A in London’s Kensington. Here I was able to investigate, see up close and marvel at the Islamic section of the museum. It was enjoyable to be in the midst of such beauty, where the lack of people made it an intimate and personal relationship.

I also mused that it was so sad so many bought into and obeyed what is turning out to be a complete fraud. Sure, many neither bothered to question the legitimacy of what they were told to be true, nor bothered to even ask the question “Prove it!” Never has there been so many rolling over against such tyranny, when a few critical thoughts would have unmasked and prevented such a cataclysm of what turned out to be mass murder.

Still when you research the history of the Western powers against the Islamic and Syrian civilisations of art and design, it is less likely to cause gasps, as such barbarism was arrogant and vicious with only the eyes set on theft and ownership. Art can be defaced yet true creativity never can be slaughtered.

The plight of the refugees, their sacred lives abused and forgotten, does nothing to diminish the glory and beauty their culture emanates through millennia. I took that away from the visit to the museum and was grateful for the solitary viewing I was afforded through circumstances that elsewhere brought suffering and death.

Funny old world!

Another visit I found uplifting was to Messums in Wiltshire. Their galleries prosaically are found in London, New York and Zurich as well as this idyll in the depths of English countryside. Here I found a collection of five or six different artists. There were particular works in clay from an inspiring Dutch artist, Jørgen Haugen Sørensen. One of Denmark’s most distinguished sculptors, his works through a long career have focused on the frailty of humanity and its beauty and ferocity.

One of his works struck me with an intensity that shocked me. His work ‘Crowding at the door of Stupidity’, a glazed stoneware a mere 114x149 cms seems to epitomise the whole blindness, deafness to what really has been presented as a global pandemic. I realise that many who might read this will have accepted the lies and fraudulent tales told to support an agenda that is anything but a pandemic, yet with the real facts flooding into the public arena, Sørensen seems to have hit a hard truth and brutal reality. The work itself was completed in 2019-20, so I feel it may become an iconic testament to the travesty we shall all come to realise has been played upon us all.

Just so that I can leave you all with a soft and happy landing, my visit to the Welsh National Wool Museum was a joy to behold. Set in the depths of the Welsh hills, at Felindre in some historic barns and converted farm buildings, it was, like London, deserted, save for a few energised proselytes of the Covid drama. Ignoring this fanaticism, I walked round the most fascinating looms and weaving machinery, still operational and the full colour of the expertise that went into making beautiful pieces, inspired me to take my work to another level while all the while respecting the ages past of inspired and uplifting creation. It was a privilege to have so much time and space to myself with the ghosts of prior masters presenting their works so intimately.

I wanted to run away with so many blankets and bedcovers, shawls and shirts. However, my respect for the creators thankfully got the better of me. 


By Virve posted November 28, 2021

Looking across the hereditary landscape of fashion and textile production, we can see how the mills of Lancashire and the North of England exploited the workforces of the working class to energise a world-renowned production and creative centre. Far from it being seen as a slave driven production centre, all the same it thrived on collection from slave plantations, shipped over to the UK on ships manned by often corralled seamen into the mills.

"Those who deny freedom to others, deserve it not for themselves" – Abe Lincoln

The West, epitomised by the British and empire, rarely made noises of anything other than compliance. Yes, of course William Wilberforce is heralded as being at the forefront of the abolition of the slave trade, yet in the greater picture nothing really changed, as much went under the carpet or unspoken.

Today we have some of the largest companies fully exploiting the cheap and slave labour of the East. Lip service at best and rank PR at next best are all that is on offer.

With the goal to stop the practice and use of slave labour in industry alone, we in the UK are setting the poorest example. It has come to light, very recently, that the whole pandemic fraud, imposed on a world, by way of enslaving, curtailing freedom and expanding the coffers of the few corporates embroiled in this criminality, is the premier example as to why the knowledge of the worst practices are not getting the light of day they deserve and must have.

It is now known that rock solid evidence of a stick up of the global community has been in preparation and implementation, through the pandemic fraud, for over several decades. The upcoming prosecution of the first ringleaders in the UK is due to break in a few weeks. When this does the hands of the corporatocracy will be seen to be all over this global travesty.

It is this very entity that through its controls of global economic mechanisms, has ravaged and kept down so many potential attempts to rid ourselves of much malpractice, passive support and resistance to change for slave labour.

The fashion and textile industry is huge, a major player in the top money earners across globalisation. In the hands of the present corporates, it will be encouraged to expand at unsustainable rates. Overarching global control will destroy local, managed and self -supporting production. In order to begin eradication of corporate served slavery of all sorts, the corporate control and interests have to be eradicated. It will serve all parts except the greedy corporates.

Bringing production home to wherever home is in the world allows each and every community to thrive and grow. With the destruction of the clique control, everything can reverse to the local level where knowledge, growth and production is best instigated. 

Psychology of Modern Slavery - Part 2

By Virve posted January 20, 2021

The mindset of the corporate entity, though weirdly recognised as a human being in its own right, is one that is like a rabid, single minded beast. Profit, greed and an ever-expansive nature are its drivers. With very few exceptions, it is as if a psychotic engine drives this beast. Due to its recognition as a force for progress and good, propagandised through the controlled media, very little focus or power has ranged against it with serious questioning of its ethic, purpose and end goals.

"The poor stay poor, the rich get rich - That's how it goes - Leonard Cohen

When this does occur and people stop believing that these creatures are too big to either fail or be questioned, then and only then will the truth of their agendas be revealed.

To take a single example of how insidious, penetrated and caring less for the single parts that make up their corporate backbone – the people enslaved – I wish to describe the journey of one such worker and her family.

The family lived in poverty. One day a representative of some never explained outfit, comes and offers the family the opportunity for their fourteen-year-old daughter to be taken and trained and employed. This would then allow the girl to support the rest of the family.

The family quickly agreed as they were desperate to improve their lot. Handing over a couple of thousand dollars, their daughter was whisked away and sold on for double to a prostitute ring where she would spend the rest of her useful days, monetising the criminals’ pockets.

In the process the girl sees no way out from this slavery and is thus drawn, as a survival mechanism, to befriend the pimp controlling her. This produces a situation where the pimp beats her, abuses her, sowing seeds that this is some kind of karmic return thus deserved. Even with visits back home, the invisible psychological chains still bind her to her fate. The psychological state of the victim becomes even more harrowing and shattered.

Because this whole mindset of bonded slavery, caste endowed servitude and cultural acceptances are riven deep, breaking these chains needs committed drive from both within and without of the community.
The cultural comprehension is buried deep within a hereditary understanding that this is a norm. In the same way that the British Empire conquered much of the world, imposing its rightness, democracy and fair play on cultures so often replete in themselves of their own highly organised societies and cultures. The arrogance of ‘ways of life’ were witnessed and emulated. If that was added on to a historical precedent, already in place, then these ways were merely seen as rightfully extending the ways of the invader.

The British for the major part had little of ethical and best practice to have emulated. In fact, for the most part their arrogance and superiority were best despised.

This sort of approach has always been a Western, better than thou approach and in its insincere way has done more for propagating the continuity of slavery worldwide. A sweeping statement, some may feel, yet when placed under the microscope this is precisely the modus operandi of the corporatocracy. 

Psychology of Modern Slavery - Part 1

By Virve posted January 15, 2021

The effect on those subjugated to slavery is, on a mental level, huge. It is also an almost unwitnessed or research area. Yet when the light is shone on it, it reveals some extraordinary traits.

Throughout history, slavery has meant a loss of free will and choice backed up by violence, sometimes exercised by the slave holder, sometimes by elements of the state” Kevin Bales

Take the example of a man and his small family. He had been in hereditary bonded slavery, through his wife’s line. This had become a ‘normal’ way of life. Yet when an inheritance windfall came their way, the opportunity to extricate themselves from such a position was opened. Although they were no longer indebted, their bondage remained. That bondage was the fear of lack, of not being able to supply the needs for the family. They were ostensibly free, yet their fear kept them tied and bound. At that point the decision was made to go back to the slave holder and ask to be kept in service, so their bills and life needs were met.

An extraordinary about turn that illustrates the damaged psychology, the power of fear and untrained self-will to disallow past mindsets to control the person.

When we look at slavery, it must be appreciated that not only is it a challenge from the holder’s point of view, but also it is a huge life changing challenge from the one in servitude. It also can be recognised that breaking these sorts of habitual life patterns is often as traumatic as the servitude itself.

How therefore, when we look at the wide range of enslavement and to varying degrees, can we begin to break down the patterning that becomes the very slavery itself?

One is of course releasing physically from situations. That action must be aligned absolutely in giving the released support both physically and mentally, so that the transition does not allow them to fall into the void of zero support. Most of these people have, if acknowledged, the creativity and wherewithal to stand up and give themselves the momentum to redesign their lives. This can only come from being able to access a basic income, a roof over their heads and security of continuity.

In many parts of the world this is financially perfectly viable. It is where the profits made from the slave’s work can now be redirected back to truly support. This would also include the penalties laid at the door of the corporate interests that abused the workforce in the first place.

This all may be seen to be a struggle too far, yet when it comes to rights of every human being, there have always been in place, ways to enact and bestow these rights, including the freedom to express one’s humanity.

It is within comprehending the highest laws we have, to support such a world - Natural Law and its enactor Common Law. The root and branch addressing of the very problems we see personified in modern slavery are no aspiration, they are imperatives. The mindset that must be first held to account is that of the global corporate drive for the ever expanding exploitation of human and natural resources.

In light of this I shall expand on the solutions found in the implementation and actions towards bringing the Common Law into becoming the true and only law of the land, in a later blog. 

Does Modern Slavery exist and why it is important to talk about?

By Virve posted December 29, 2020

There are many reasons why millions are trapped in modern slavery. From political decisions and population growth to lack of choice and opportunity for the poor: from undermining and theft of the natural environment upon which many of the world’s poorest people depend for their livelihoods – including access to the sea, forest and grazing lands – to urban – centric development policy: rural communities in the Majority World are left jobless, hungry, struggling in poverty and vulnerable to exploitation and forms of modern slavery.” S.Minney (Slave to Fashion) 2017, p. 11

“There are many reasons why millions are trapped in modern slavery." – Safia Minney

Slavery today is promoted as mainly reminding ourselves of the slave trade of centuries gone by, yet the truth is slavery has ben around since time immemorial. Today it exists in every level of society. We ourselves are slaves to a system we have been indentured under. Freedom is a term loosely praised by owner and slave both. The system of them and us that exists and is crudely illustrated by the wealth gap, is slavery in name and practice.

When billionaires and trillionaires dictate our terms of life, when inequality is a tool of profit, then slavery never went away. Too many however buy into their servitude without a single question. That apart from every other pointer is why we are where we are. No sugar coating of modern life hides these bare truths.

At this moment in time, we witness millions of both children and adults trapped in a slavery, contrived and imposed by others, in virtually every single country in the world, including those seemingly living in the blissful ignorance they have nothing to do with slavery.

Modern slavery is precisely the exploitation on all levels of others for personal or commercial gain. It is everywhere, though far too often buried from sight and discussion, many times due to the embarrassment and harm to share value of those perpetrating it. So enwrapped into the commercial success or failure, it has become endemic to value and worth rather than ethical and good practice.

There may be many ventures that hand on heart try to mobilise support for Fair-trade, extrication from poverty, aid and other causes. Yet many of these you will find behind them are the controlling, financial creaming off of corporate interests. These are not true and transparent good causes. They are the cover for profit and greed. Shocking as it may seem, this truth is far from uncommon.

The main forms of slavery are as follows:

1. Human Trafficking – across continents for prostitution, forced labour, used as criminal mules/can non fodder, false marriage subjects and for body parts.
2. Child Slave Labour – where children are exploited for another’s gain. This is from the family environment through sale of same to use as military cannon fodder and marriage for financial gain.
3. Forced Labour – where people are forced to work against their will and given little remuneration if any for such work.
4. Debt bondage/and bonded labour – the one most commonly associated with the word slavery, yet most prolific. Within this category the whole debt-based economies of the world, the so called democratic way, is totally based on debt. The lie perpetrated is that this is nothing of the sort, yet usury is the very essence and modality keeping people under the yoke and enslaved.
5. Slavery based on hereditary bondage – this traditional form of slavery, running from the maternal line, holds people as the ‘property’ of another.

It is estimated that over 40 million people are under this yoke worldwide, and this we call modern slavery.

It really is time this pretence of ‘do goodery’ is exposed for the deception it is and for the real concerned and those desiring to make real change to be given free rein. 

Slave Labour The New Old Norm

By Virve posted December 13, 2020

Having, through my research come across an incredibly arrogant remark purported to have come from the lips of Kofi Annan, it stopped me in my tracks and I was forced to ask myself – “How can anyone make such a statement that almost deifies a construct and at the same time demands that no one question it?

“Arguing against Globalisation is like arguing against the laws of gravity” 

Kofi Annan

That sort of totalitarian diktat, I might have assumed to have emanated from the dark days of Soviet life when I was a mere child of that state, yet to now hear that sort of command in what we have dutifully accepted as the free world, free trade and unbridled consumerism and democracy, defies belief.

Why is it that we have been trained, inundated and propagandised into believing we need more, consume more and to be salivating at the door of more? The simple answer is this – it’s the economy, stupid!

You see, present day economics runs on producing more, creating less durable products, pushing the need and greed to have more, so profits go up, turnover is rampant and the drive for greater shareholder value is increased. It is an insane wheel of creation that always spins off its own axis at every cycle. The methodology of globalisation is this principle, formerly contained in a state, gone global. This always has and always does merely benefit, over time, the greed and profit of the few.

The few, in respect of the scheme going global are the corporations running the scheme – the corporatocracy.

Since the U.N. and the many acolytes of the global corporatocracy, on the surface, look like they are helping create a smooth running, good-for-all framework of interconnected benefit, underneath they are all working towards a plan where the very few, control the many. Annan himself was merely a pawn in this plan and the plan is proudly named the Great Reset.

The Great Reset is the brainchild from the World Economic Forum, a club of the elite movers, shakers and global controllers of our world.

The Great Reset is a massively funded, desperately ambitious, internationally coordinated project led by some of the biggest multinational corporations and financial players on the planet and carried out by cooperating state bodies and NGOs.” Tessa Lena

Under cover of a plan that looks to all intents and purposes like the solution to our ailments, mismanagements etc, it evokes a reality that is set to become the most authoritarian, totalitarian feast on both the people’s and nature’s riches. The biggest power grab in the history of the world.

The massive PR promotion that is being thrown out by Strategic Intelligence conveys in all its Machiavellian horror what is actually in store.

Be under no illusion this subterfuge will end really badly for any ethical, sustainable, Fair-trade operations either presently practiced or waiting in the side lines for future development. Under the shroud of Common Purpose, enslavement will only be tightened and formed into an indelible black mark on humanity. 

Charity, Recycling or Relieving
Our Conscience

By Virve posted November 29, 2020

The quote below is a well-served sore, a homily, yet within it there lies a seed of profundity. Charity is an act of kindness, selfless service for no personal gain, a support of loving kindness. That it starts at home is endemic to the cause we all must work on, that of making our self, our inner processes work in utter coordination with each other, serve ourselves exquisitely and find that inner balance that enables freedom and strength to be expressed outwardly. That point is the full expression of the results of charity.

"Charity starts at home" – Anon

Yet when we look at how charity, in the form of charity shops are constructed, do we see that manifested in its fullness? Hardly, yet not entirely devoid of it. Thus in the context of the fashion and textile industry this branch of its existence appeals for investigation and rooting out the mindset and raison d’être.

One example I can take and one whose name, for convenience, I will keep anonymous, has been set up through four charity shop outlets and one thousand five hundred textile recycling banks and home collects. Its objective is to raise funds to fight global poverty by collecting unwanted clothes in order to reuse and resell.

One glaring example here stands out – that of wishing to fight global poverty, yet if we do not set out to identify the core causes of global poverty and address these the objective of ploughing resources and finance into a deep hole that can never be filled by these actions, it becomes counterproductive.

Within the realm of my personal experience with charity shops, that of working in them and of using their resources, my observations are that a huge amount of textiles, fabrics and clothes are discarded, in preference to them being reused in other contexts in the home. It is also sad that so much fabric and clothing still end up in landfill or reprocessing.

Another apparent anomaly is that many charity shops are creations of corporate entities. The administration of such set ups as always creams off much of the alleged donations, well before they are able to land in their target end file. There is a large virtual signalling by these entities to be ‘seen’ as do gooders while with their other hand they are carving away at elements that are ultimately part of the problem. Such miserable PR stunts, propagandised superficiality, not only confuses the minds of ordinary folk but also continues the lie that “we are all in it together and are helping save the planet”. Such nonsense is so counterproductive as to mind play the general population into feeling they are “doing the right thing”.

Although I cannot supply my own specific solutions, I feel that the creative collective mindset, once admitting to its part of being part of the problem can then begin to construct ways and modalities that reverse this dead end circular activity. This would come from a major reset of mindsets, a stimulation of creative endeavour with tin the scope of the individual, that by its very effect on the small then expands, through force of numbers to the greater arena. When a mindset, no matter how minute, expresses itself, it creates evolution, expansion and foundation. In practice this is experienced by others. It then inspires others to act and do likewise, thus the expanding circle of influence grows positively and creatively. Although a general outline this principle has to be the foundation of any creative endeavour. It is potent, productive and change making. 

Rendering Deficit into Asset

By Virve posted November 28, 2020

Can you imagine a world where slavery is the currency of trade, commerce and goods and chattels? The energy, the manpower each slave inputs is correlated and marked against the production of the final product.

With minimal upkeep these human machines are used, abused and discarded when they have served their term of usefulness.

They become a traded asset, one that has value the more adept the slave is. Yet in spite of their skills and input most everything apart of their own very survival is for others and benefit of those others. 

The moment the slave resolves that he will no longer be a slave, his fetters fall.
Freedom and slavery are mental states – Gandhi

The goods and chattels they are for life, service the life-styles and conditions of others. A single avenue, one-way street.

It is this commodifying these slaves that make so much of our world turn, yet that it turns is merely because of the abuse of human worth. That very fact makes the value and worth of all production tainted and ugly. How we turn this around is as creative and worthwhile as it gets.

As with all things there is the psychological imperative behind all constructs and slavery is no less an important construct both from the mind of the slave as the mind of the slave owner.

Within the context of modern slavery in the fashion and textile industry we have:

Forced labour, bonded labour and debt bondage. Each of these contain basic elements of interconnected dependency.

Forced labour is where individuals have been placed in the position, imprisoned in an environment precluding any real sense of free choice and movement. Such containment allows the ‘slave owner’ to specify precisely what these bodies can and cannot do.

Bonded labour is where the ‘goods’, the people are used for value that is contracted for a period. They may be owned by another and leased out. They may be sold as assets outright, but all the same they are bonded to a place, position and serviced for value. These can be obviously be spotted within the context of a factory, a holding bay, a protected group under surveillance and control, yet the far greater group, seemingly not obvious are those trapped in debt bondage.

Debt bondage covers most all of the 99% in the world. It is a bondage made apparent by the system of barter and trade itself. It expresses itself as those owing others. The others are the elite, the 1%, the controllers of the financial and market system. We mortgage ourselves, we pay tax, we run credit cards and debit flow. We pay for almost every service supplied. We are told that tax is essential to make the flow and existence of our needs to be available on tap.
The sadness is that as slaves our ignorance believes this is the way, the only way and buy it. We become the worst of the slaves – we believe our slave masters and feel honour bound to follow them and obey what they tell us is the way.

The critical mind of the free being is almost non-existent. We have given up our freedom, for baubles and trinkets of distraction and false vision. Worse, we service the other elements of slavery by our purchasing that which has been created by slaves. We collude, for our own pleasure in propagating a vile and destructive system. 

How do we begin to release from this wheel of entrapment? It starts with looking at ourselves, of questioning what we know, believe in, trust and desire. It then asks the question – is what I do, say and support helping, not causing harm to myself and others, prosecuting growth and healing or merely continuing to feed the poison?

This single introspection can be the hardest work we shall ever engage in, yet its consequences will produce a world of beauty or a world of darkness and suffering beyond imagination. 

Pulling The Threads

By Virve posted November 26, 2020

If we kid ourselves that slavery was that thing back then when they had wooden boats and transported blacks to America and whites to Africa and it was all very neatly brought to and end with William Wilberforce and his outing of the slave trade, you would be so mistaken as to be confounded to find it is alive and well and breeding all over the world. In the fashion industry it is rampant.

I am not the slave of Darkness I am the slave of Light - Rumi

If we open our eyes and travel around our own country, we will surprise ourselves to find garment sweat shops and factories filled with those whose lot is to work for mere pounds an hour. With conditions of employment, raged and bare of even the slightest rights and because so often their presence in this country is tenuous at best, become the butt end of bullying and extortion with the threat of deportation and return to often worse conditions in their country of origin. It makes for a pitiful sight and an even more wretched example of those that abuse them.

How does the existence of this modern slavery get to pass under the radar? It is as if it is given a nod and a wink and looking the other way is missed.

In reality before the advent of internet and the ease of connectivity globally, it was almost unheard of to seek manufacture on the other side of the world. This country had in the 1990s, a still thriving fashion and textile industry, home spun. The kudos of British made fashion was itself a global phenomenon. We had an industry full of promise and production.

Around the mid to end eighties the clothing and textile industries made up over 9% of the overall manufacturing employment figures. Seemingly a small percentage yet it belied the vibrancy of the industry. Yet behind these figures rose an ugly visage of trafficking, abuse of labour and exploitation. Today it has come to represent a dark side of the fashion industry. One that when raised brings forceful denial.

Homeworkers Worldwide UK an NGO set up to support home-based workers around the world produced a survey on the garment industry that included a range of around 182 companies across the region. Its results revealed a shocking exposure. Workers were found to be paid cash and only £2.50 an hour, whereas the employers raised pay slips for much more. This was just the tip of the exploitation. Living conditions, travel conditions, threats of deportation and reporting to authorities were just some of the abuses they found existed.

Stepping back - let’s look at how it all starts. The consumer is always looking for the bargains, who does not love a bargain. So, it is this desire for best price is seen by the manufacturers as a way of seeking dirt cheap production, making the same mark ups yet with costs so low they are able to offer that bargain desire to customers. Little do the customers realise that their pleasure has resulted in exploitation and abuse to get them their desires. So if someone picks up a bargain of a ticket price of £100 for just £25 pounds, we are exposed to not only a rampant profit margin being slashed to an above cost price tag that within it has the microscopic payments to those that have sweated it into existence.

The nub of the question is that with modern technology, the internet and the crazy competition of ever cheaper prices, we are finding that the boutique down the road becomes barely viable as the major corporate bandits raid the last vestiges of independent outlets and cram the token differences into a huge pool of sweated output. For many trhen this sweat laboured production actually begins a slow death, as margins can never be sustainable at the levels they are sinking to. The reach to find ever more compliant cheap production goes the way the technology industry migrated from Japan to Singapore to Hong Kong to Vietnam, Korea and then Indonesia and Bangladesh before being eaten whole by China. That same pathway can be seen to be emulated by the fashion industry with little credit or kudos to ethical practice.

It is a sorry state of affairs and allows slave labour to run rampant with little oversight. When you have governments that act in similar ways with their populations it is no surprise the elite fashionistas get way with these practices going unnoticed and uncared.

The question must be asked – how long will people’s care less attitude support an industry that is more and more held to account for its bad ways. I feel until we ourselves make it a benchmark of proud production and portability honouring each link in the chain, a swift death is inevitable and deserved.

How we bring this about is creating a seismic change. That seismic change comes with ridding ourselves of a society and governance that spawns greed, self-interest and division. The answer has always been there. It has been the vein of life running through our existence.

What is it? It is the re-introduction of the Common Law. Common Law has always been the single highest law of the land. Its reintroduction as the Law of our Land will get rid of all taxes, bring a lawful equality to everyone. Simply in respect of the fashion industry and textiles it will enable a whole new paradigm of being. Where taxes are non-existent. Where production costs in our own country enable production here at the most sensible and reasonable rates. Where the greed of the few is totally disbanded, as its existence is unlawful under Common Law. Exploitation is equally unlawful and parity and equal standing for each of us is the norm. Within this new paradigm, or more correctly old paradigm ignored, the creative purpose in design, through to expectation of the consumer will be taken to new heights of sustainable awareness and desire. The recognition that all things need to be in balance and respected will spawn a huge leap forward in output from design to delivery.

Is this a mere utopian dream? It most certainly is not. It is already being committed to actuality as I write.
Now there is a solution in process! 

Unravelling Questions For My Dissertation

By Virve posted November 23, 2020

Here we are again with that challenging moment where I need to find the subject I wish to write about that will link to my ideas, the project and finally to the end presentation that is my degree submission.

"We carry inside us the wonders we seek outside us" – Rumi

My thoughts are like clouds skidding across the sky of my mind. They are all around the modern slavery, in the textile and fashion industry. I ponder thoughts around how these dramatic and human tragedies get entangled into what is supposedly a creative industry. How do these real-life concurrencies affect and motivate, if that could be the right word, such beauty and creative output while aligned, noose-like to a very potent and evil human capacity for suffering and abuse.

The very real abuse of slave labour to benefit one part of humanity at the cost of another seems so counter intuitive to all that looks so beautiful and executed so magnificently. It is this equal and opposite that not only needs exposure but also must be a vital and pressing question to answer – can we live with and accept such disparity? Is it worth the art created?

The whole subject is a concern for me as I have to ask do we know or are we aware of what is put into the production of our fashion wear and textiles that is the antithesis of what we in the West seek and search for in the context of fashion and beautiful things. There really has to be an awareness of the reality of production and exploitation and further the ridding of this cancer in an industry that prides itself on show and glitz with very little, save token acknowledgement to a grim reality in production. I would like to feel that fashion going forward will embrace the clearing out of such base and horrible practices, in favour of equality and respect for all down the production line.

The second question I ask myself is - is it possible to go back to basics and embrace the true expression of recycling and reuse of materials. For in other times the fashion and the creation of clothing and textiles were eagerly brought through and presented by repurposing materials from one usage to utilitarian other. What comes to mind is Boro, an ancient modality of creating together different materials to make clothing. Emanating from Japan it also carried immense beauty in production and style. There is so much we can learn from our ancestors and that might start us to appreciate we do not have to go down the ever-increasing consumption road while wasting energy, materials and resources along the way in our disregard for sustainability.

So, I feel I must dig deeper to find more information online and in books, so that I can prepare a road map for how we confront the challenge and then how we can develop ways to formulate and utilise grand ways of expressing the glory of life and its abundances rather than exploiting them. It will be I am certain a revelatory experience for not only myself but for those that will enjoy the creations I complete from this educational journey. 

Welcome to My Blog

By Virve posted November 22, 2020

Welcome to my blog. I hope that my musings, ramblings and self enquiry will make for interesting interaction by word. I realise that you will be at the mercy of my thoughts, feelings, inclinations and perspectives, yet even that will reveal to the reader some of the inner workings of a creative mind. 

Since I am presently on the journey towards a degree in Textiles and Surface Design there will be reflection of and within that journey, shared.

So as we journey together I would appreciate and love to have your feedback on these postings as that makes it a sharing beyond my own mind and allows for other thoughts and perceptions to help cultivate the ever flowing, changing elements of the creative process