As the founder of FINDRA, attending the Kendal Mountain Festival is always a highlight, but this year's experience was nothing short of inspiring and motivating. The heartbeat of adventure, the spirit of exploration, and the camaraderie of like-minded individuals converged in an event that left a lasting impact on both myself and the entire FINDRA team.
Having the opportunity to meet our incredible customers face to face, hear their feedback on what we are doing and generally just catch up for a blether is always a really special experience for me personally. The event is also a great way to gain an insight into the industry from a grassroots perspective, watching films, listening to talks and having conversations with so many incredible individuals who have a single vision and focus, to make the outdoors a place for everyone.
For FINDRA this year's festival felt like a real pivotal moment in our journey to date. Our commitment to empowering women in the outdoors took center stage as FINDRA proudly sponsored the screening of "Women on the Move." This thought-provoking film, inspired by the insightful work of Professor Katrina Jungnickel, delved into the history of women's activewear spanning more than two centuries. The journey from the 1800s to the 1940s showcased the resilience and ingenuity of women who, faced with a lack of suitable outdoor clothing, crafted their own solutions.
The film was more than a visual narrative; it was a call to action. It prompted a conversation that resonated deeply with the audience. The lack of choice in women's outdoor clothing is a pervasive issue, and the film served as a lens through which we examined the roots of this problem.
What followed was a lively and engaging panel discussion featuring representatives from the Adventure Syndicate and Politics of Patents and Mòr Diversity. Serious issues were tackled with a unique blend of light-heartedness and humour. The cleverly curated and light-hearted “fashion show’ showcased the garments that women from the past had ingeniously created for their outdoor pursuits and was both entertaining and educational. It highlighted the historical struggles women faced in finding suitable activewear, all while making the audience chuckle at the ingenious solutions of the past.
Sitting on the panel, I had the privilege of sharing the journey that led to the inception of FINDRA. The seed was planted when I, as an active woman, found myself frustrated by the lack of stylish and versatile outdoor clothing for women. The realisation that the market needed a disruptor fuelled my determination to create FINDRA, a brand dedicated to offering functional, stylish, and comfortable outdoor apparel for women.
The audience participation was exceptional, adding layers of depth to the conversation. The diverse perspectives brought forth by attendees allowed us to explore the intricacies of the issue, from historical challenges to the present-day landscape. The dialogue flowed seamlessly, covering relevant and thought-provoking points that echoed the collective need for change in the outdoor clothing industry.
As the conversation evolved, it became evident that the call for inclusivity and innovation in women's outdoor clothing is not just a personal mission for FINDRA but a shared aspiration among the outdoor community. The festival served as a catalyst for collaboration and advocacy, inspiring us to continue pushing boundaries and challenging norms.
In conclusion, Kendal Mountain Festival 2023 was a pivotal moment for FINDRA. Following the event we all received such positive feedback about the film, the outfits and the discussion that the event had inspired.
For me It reinforced our commitment to breaking down barriers in women's outdoor apparel and ignited a fire to drive change within the industry. The threads of inspiration woven throughout the event will undoubtedly shape the future of FINDRA and contribute to a more inclusive and diverse landscape for women in the great outdoors.
To find out more about the ‘ Women on the move” project read Kat Jungnikels blog from last year