Street Style: Playing for the Future

By Kestrel Jenkins

MIKAELA WALLINDER CLIFFORD OF RUTH & RAGNAR

From an early age, Mikaela was determined to make a difference in the world. Having cleared landmines in the Sahara desert, helped rebuild after the Tsunami in Thailand and worked with refugees across four continents in the world, some would say she has had some impact already.

So, how does her background correlate to designing colorful, funky organic kidswear? Mikaela believes it’s all connected. On the one hand, she has worked toward making today’s planet a safer one. On the other, she's providing bursts of imagination and creativity to build for our planet's future. Either way, she's taking small steps to help do her part. Enter her company :: Ruth & Ragnar.

Mikaela has combined a background in humanitarian work with her life-changing experiences as a mother to create Ruth & Ragnar, a socially responsible apparel company for kids. In addition to offering a highly curated collection of Scandinavian-designed organic kidswear, Ruth & Ragnar is pioneering a new line of kids clothing to be made entirely from US-grown-and-knitted organic cotton. The new line will be fully transparent, sustainably-made, and highlight social and environmental concerns around the world. Raising awareness and changing attitudes is at the forefront of Ruth and Ragnar’s core values.

“I named the company after my inspirational grandparents. When I thought of the clothing I’ll be carrying, “comfortable”, “colorful”, “organic”, “sustainable”, “happy” and ”fun” I immediately thought of my grandparents as they played a huge role in making my childhood in Sweden all those things. Ruth & Ragnar is my tribute to them.”

Mikaela’s daughter Milou is her adorable muse and the reason sustainability has become so important to Mikaela. “I want my daughter to grow up in a green and peaceful world. Ruth & Ragnar is my contribution to that future.”

Scarf (by MamaChic, a nursing scarf that turns into an infinity scarf that turns into a baby blanket that turns into a….. the list is endless, made in the USA of reversible bamboo fabric)
Top (by PACT, made of organic cotton)
Pants (thrifted from Captain’s Helm in Oceanside, CA)
Shoes (by Freewaters, each purchase of their footwear helps provide clean drinking water to those in need)
Bracelet (handmade in Western Sahara, gift from a colleague when she was working in the country)
Bag (made from a “Kanga” :: a traditional East African fabric, Mikaela brought the fabric and her favorite handbag to a market in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania and had a local tailor make it using the Kanga and the old handbag as an inspiration, it’s one of her favorite bags and she uses it everywhere)

Milou is wearing:
Dress (by Gardner and Gang, organic cotton, one of six brands soon to be available at Ruth and Ragnar)

 

Kestrel JenkinsAbout The Author

Kestrel is a globetrotter with small-town Wisconsin spirit. She has lived in Chile, London, Madrid & New York, soaking up and absorbing every moment of fashion and difference along the way. She has worked with People Tree, Global Action Through Fashion, The GreenShows, FashionMeGreen, Fashioning Change, Ecouterre, Inhabitat & EcoSalon. She loves words & garments, and reorganizing them both. For Kestrel, fashion is her favorite way to share stories. Her most recent endeavor, AWEAR, is a style-driven project intended to help inspire us to think about where our clothes are made, what they are made of, and who makes them.

 

 

 

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