overalls, productivity, work, home, life,

The other day I had a friend ask me how I’m able to get so many cardboard projects done with two little girls running around.

I told her about my loving and helpful husband and play-focused kids, but I forgot to mention what has previously been a kind of trade secret here at The Cardboard Collective:


Not actually a word, but an equilateral MATH equation whereby overalls = a state of flow.

overalls, productivity, work, home, life,

Here’s how it works.

  1. Find an amazing pair of overalls at your nearest charity, recycling or vintage/thrift shop. Mine are light weight so I can wear them in summer and fit over all my clothes including jeans.
  2. Find a special storage place for your Flow=veralls,  (a special box in your drawer, a hook in your mudroom, or the trap door space under your kitchen floor are all good.)
  3. Take your Flow=veralls out ONLY when you have time and space cleared to do your work, and by work I really mean Play.
  4. When you’re done (or your time is up) immediately remove your Flow=veralls and put them back in their special, designated storage place.

The Cardboard Collective

One thing I realized about Flow=veralls early on is that they send a clear signal of intention. “Hey! I’m ready to work on a project….here I go!” Everyone in your family instantly picks up on this signal and is able to do something that doesn’t require your attention for a while, which feels pretty amazing.

Working from home, there are no shirts and ties, no flight attendant blazers and pill box hats…there are only stretchy pants, jeans, plaid flannels, and the plain colored T-shirts that you try to keep from getting stained.

These clothing items basically only communicate the fact that you exist…

Flow=veralls on the other hand, have kinship with a kind of ancient knowing. Uniforms, monk’s robes, turbans, aprons, house dresses, smocks, scout kerchiefs… These are all costumes that we wear to prepare for the work that we do, and to signal our belonging within a group or our commitment to an idea. That idea could be a clean house, or peace within a spiritual one.

The Cardboard Collective

…..so in effect, I’m letting you in on my secret. I’m also inviting you to join a group of people that love to do work that is actually play, who can’t help but do something that they feel passion about, but are not always clear on where they will find the time to pursue that passion.

Whether you are knitting an afghan, tying fishing fly, or hauling cardboard by bike, Flow=veralls are ready to escort you to that time and space where you can make it happen.

I hope you do.


6 thoughts on “FLOW=VERALLS

  1. I have paint splattered sweat pants and tops that when people see me in they know it’s work time for me. I do have an occasional person who will ask if I want to go for a walk while looking at my clothes, but that leaves it up to me to decide if i want to continue to work or go have some fun.

  2. What a wonderful idea. This really speaks to me. I have a lab coat for when I want to get messy, but I’m thinking I should wear it whenever I’m playing. I don’t have children, but there is something about changing your clothes to do something special that makes you shift gears and mentally prepare to work.

  3. This is a beautiful post, Amber. I love the idea of a garment that wraps you in creative intention, and sends a message to your household that this time is for you. I wonder if my cat could learn to respect some Flow=veralls?

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