Sure, the world needs change, but change can be hard and God knows we don’t need more hardship. And yet, sometimes, change can be but a small step in the right direction. Such is the “Phenomenal Woman” t-shirt.
Inspired by Maya Angelou’s “Phenomenal Woman” poem (a poem worth googling by all means), lawyer and activist, Meena Harris, created a simple t-shirt stamped with the empowering phrase. The idea was to launch a product that would support non-profit organizations, with all net proceeds benefiting these chosen organizations.
Little did Harris know that what began as a t-shirt would turn in to a whole movement. A couple of years later, and The Phenomenal Woman Action Campaign is well on its way, bringing awareness to social causes and supporting a wide range of initiatives. According to their website, by getting the official Phenomenal Woman t-shirt, you’re not only making a bold statement in support of women everywhere, but you’re also supporting the critical work that’s being done for women’s rights on the ground.
“I thought I was going to create 20 or so shirts and send them off with my friends,” Harris remarked in an interview with Shape. But after the Women’s March, the t-shirt gained traction. “Instead of saying ‘ok, we hit our goal, let me go back to my regular life,’ I thought ‘holy cow, I have to keep growing this, right? We’re really onto something her.’”
Now sported by celebrities and everyday folks alike, the plain t-shirt is proof that change can be achieved within the parameters of your closet.