Doing Good, Beautifully

Siempre Viva boutique stitches together craft, fashion and a commitment to fair trade and women artists.

story by Maggie Murdock Nichols | photos by Greer Inez

In Spanish, Siempre Viva means succulent; the words literally translate to always alive. The Siempre Viva boutique immerses visitors in lively color, pattern and texture. The tunics, dresses, jumpers, huaraches, accessories, and home goods serve as a canvas for the creativity of skilled makers. Siempre Viva’s Mexican artisans adorn their crafts with care, incorporating the color and flare of their vibrant culture. The threads, leather, wood, and metal that comprise each good represent the work of earnest hands and ambitious hearts.

Sally January introduces our city to the beauty of Modern Pueblo while giving us the opportunity to engage in conscious and cause-centered shopping. Sally has created a space where tangible beauty and heart collide.

We’ve all said it to ourselves, after an amazing trip: “I could totally see myself living there.” Sally had the same thought, but acted on it. After spending time in Colima, Mexico as an exchange student through a Sister Cities International Program, Sally decided to stay. At the age of 15, she left her home in Norman, enrolled in high school in Colima, and began her life there.

As Sally became fluent in Spanish, her love for the people grew. She went on to study International Development at University of Colorado, and spent time in Spain.

Sally wanted to return and give back to the region of Mexico she called home. A little over three years ago, Siempre Viva began with one skirt and one woman. That one item of merchandise has now grown to a full range of products and more than 30 makers, sold online and via 70 retail locations nationally.

Sally regularly visits Colima, Oaxaca, and Chiapas. She works alongside makers, coaching and encouraging. She offers sustainable employment and fair wages. The majority of her makers are women providing for their families. It’s a lot of work, but a lot of fun. Sally raves about Colima’s food, nightlife, and beaches. When there, she spends her mornings with artisans and meets up later on the beach with her husband and twin boys, Silas and Cruz.

We delight in knowing our purchases are creating real and lasting change for our sisters south of the border. (And catch them at the Holiday Pop-Ups in Midtown 12/6-9.)

3 NW 9th St, a few doors off of Broadway and east of Iguana restaurant. @siemprevivaclothing