Frank Rapoport, who lost his 32-year-old daughter Alex to suicide after a lengthy battle with eating disorders, is honoring her memory by importing and selling traditional garments from Nepal and Bhutan and using the profits to support eating-disorder advocacy and awareness, writes Rita Giordano for The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Rapoport first traveled to Nepal to scatter his daughter’s ashes in the place where she once found peace and connection. While traveling the area, he bought a vest created from handwoven fabric.
When he returned to Devon, he started receiving compliments for his unusual vest. That prompted him to start SamSara Gear, a clothing and woven-goods import project that sells anything from simple bags and mats to elaborate jackets and coats. The more modest items are posted on Etsy, while the more expensive items are featured on the company’s website. Rapoport is also hoping to have his goods carried by retail stores at some point.
And while the business is still in its infancy, Rapoport is already getting something extremely special from the endeavor.
“It’s my way of connecting with Alex,” he said.
Read more about SamSara Gear in The Philadelphia Inquirer here.