Think About It

Lynette reminds me often “Think about it Denise, ever since we went to Peru, things have been happening. Things just line up. They don’t make sense but it’s like they should.”

And I don’t want to believe her but it is so true.  It is closest to the truth when we talk about Chicks for Children and the orphanage we (yes, we, as in YOU and MJC) have paid to help give up to 100 girls a safe place to sleep at night.  A blog post I wrote sums up the beginning of the story, when we were all hit by a Ton of Bricks with the sad news of Amber Roussel. In short it says, “And right before I heard the news about Amber  I was on the phone with another customer, Charlotte. We’ve sent them quite a bit of Matilda Jane for her family’s work in Kitale.   I received a note from her a few weeks ago.  They are trying to build an orphanage and I wanted to help spread the word.  But after seeing the site and reading about it, I knew it was something I had to do. Something I could do thanks to Matilda Jane.  I was on the phone telling Charlotte that we would like to fund their entire  Brick By Brick Campaign.  And as I think about it now, maybe it was something we were supposed to do for Amber.  Just maybe.”

A few weeks ago, we all got Pay it Forward bracelets in the mail from Amber’s husband, Ryan. I had been out of town, so Kayla just gave me mine last week.  I put it on and not any more than a few hours later I get an email from Mark, the founder of Chicks for Children. He was sending me the blueprints for the orphanage. I wish I could think of words to say how I feel about the timing but I can’t.  It’s almost as if ….this whole thing is out of my hands and in those of a greater being.  I know I may sound crazy but think about it.  All along we have been planning to honor Amber and her family in Kitale but we are waiting for it to be the right way. We are still unsure what that may be. Maybe a sculpture, maybe her namesake, maybe just a simple photo with her story…we will know what is right when we are ready. I am certain of that.

Now let me flash forward to this very moment. And maybe I am reaching but as I am getting ready to tell you a story about the dress above I notice the strands of chicks hanging.  Yes, chicks and no, I did not ask Skye to do that nor did I notice until this very moment.

In the back of my head I have been thinking “Gosh, we cannot just build an orphanage and think our work is done.  What about septic and a bed to sleep on, or a kitchen to cook in with plates to eat off, and the food and the help to let these girls know there is a bigger and brighter world waiting for them.”  And loud and clear in front of my head I hear the words “Denise, you are not going to be happy when you see this.”  Oh, I hate those words because I know it usually has something to do with production or a mess Franklin made.  Whelp, these words were coming from Kayla this time, our Quality Control gal….and it was not only a dress but also a top.  Two pieces of our already small Winter Collection had the smallest of flaws that, in my mind, are unacceptable.  I don’t know if you have ever looked at our clothing carefully, the stitching, the way the seams are finished, but we do a GREAT job.   And yes, I am bragging because I am always looking at the boutiques to check what other quality looks like and I am quite proud.  Very proud.  But today not so much….just because of these two pieces.

I looked at Lynette and neither of us had to say a word, because we both knew in our heart of hearts that we cannot sell either piece because it falls short of our standards. However, we certainly can’t close up the boxes and ignore these darling pieces.  They are way too cute and I knew they could be used to help support our on going efforts in Kitale, Africa.I know we have never done this before. But I also know, I cannot let boxes of gorgeous items sit in a box when they could be helping so many people. We have given them a roof over their head, and I ask that you help give them a bed to sleep on.  So, instead of just pulling these pieces and not offering them, we have decided to still offer them to you, our customers.   They will be discounted due to the minor defect we noticed, and all proceeds will go to Chicks for Children!

The flaw is very small.  You may or many not even notice it if you take a look at your Trunk Keeper’s kit sample.  But regardless, there is a flaw.

So, if you still decide t buy these two pieces…and I hope you do…please know that all of the proceeds are going to a wonderful cause.  A cause that 20 of my MJC friends and family and I are all traveling to Africa next month to be a part of.  Because of this, please understand that we are not able to offer our regular return policy with these two pieces.  Purchases of these two pieces are NON-REFUNDABLE, NON-EXCHANGABLE.  ALL PROCEEDS go directly to help furnish the orphanage and because of this,  ALL SALES ARE FINAL ON THESE TWO ITEMS.   The dress will sell for $15 and the top for $10.

We work hand in hand with Mark and Linda Cooper. They are not a big foundation.  It is them, several others  and us.  They came to visit me and my team about a month ago to tell us all about the trip and the work to be done.  We know exactly where every dime goes.   This is very important to me.  I normally would never EVER sell a piece of clothing that has the smallest of defects but it’s either box them up or get these girls a great mattress. Part of me says I am crazy to blog this, but part of me says, “It’s not all about me, we are part of something much bigger”.

So please know I understand if you do not agree with Matilda Jane selling these items. It is ok, and your choice. I get it!  But I’m sure many of you will still fall in love with these items even with the slight flaw that exists…and at the same time, something wonderful will result from it!




Nylka - November 5, 2012 - 1:06 pm

I would love to help this cause. How can we order these items?

Joy Williams - November 3, 2012 - 12:10 am

Wow! What a wonderful cause and wonderful idea! I’m so glad that everything is coming together so well! God is awesome! 🙂

Lisa Lynch - November 1, 2012 - 10:59 pm

What a moving story which is just another example of why us momma’s wear, & dress our babies in, MJC. I tried for both pieces, but sadly not quick enough. Im sure each little girl who was able to catch one, will love her “perfect” piece!!

Heather Y. - November 1, 2012 - 8:34 pm

You ladies are so wonderful! There are always little surprises offered by Matilda Jane… “An Unpredictable Clothing Company” indeed! I think God always follows through with his plans… though they may not be in our plans! I love seeing testimonies like this… it shows you that there is a higher power and he has a plan for everything! With all that said… What a wonderful cause these “defective” pieces are going to! I do not know of one clothing company that would do such a “Pay it Forward”… and the best part is that EVERYONE benefits! This just makes me feel so proud to be part of the MJ family! And, thanks for sharing your story! 🙂

Bonnie Brentnall - November 1, 2012 - 7:31 pm

So very proud of you! My little Jane wears only MJ and as a child adopted, having spend the first year of her life in an orphanage, my heart swells with delight that I support an amazing company/ family such as yours.

Rene' Crow - November 1, 2012 - 4:48 pm

As a close friend of Mark and Linda Cooper and a supporter myself of Chicks for Children, let me say how uplifting it is to read about God’s love through his servants like the Coopers and the MJC family. May God richly bless this work.

DanaOH (DaytotheOh) - November 1, 2012 - 4:30 pm

You. Just. Rock. There are no coincidences in life, in my book. Only occurrences that happen in life because of those who follow their heart for something bigger than we are or understand. You are one of the great heart followers of life. Just love ya, girl. Many thanks for all you do. The other MJC (Mark) just added to the tears. What a great day for tears, love, and giving!!!

Kathryn R. - November 1, 2012 - 2:00 pm

Keeping my fingers crossed that I can still get them next week when I get paid!

Mark J. Cooper (Chicks for Children) - November 1, 2012 - 1:01 pm

There are so many coincidences regarding things like the chickens and so forth. Is it also a bit amazing that the initials MJC for Matilda Jane Clothing look a bit like my initials for Mark J. Cooper? Our family and foundation has fallen in love with Denise and Matilda Jane. Denise is right. Linda and I and a few close friends are but a few people who are trying to help the orphans from the Kipsongo Slum. However, our few numbers are greatly strengthened by Denise and her MJC family. I am as strong as we are. Denise has strenthened our resolve to help remove this pocket of poverty from the world. We REFUSE to think it can’t be done. Thank you so much Denise for sharing your mind, heart, and soul with us and others in the states as well as those in Kitale. If anyone ever thinks that moving girls from a horrible slum to a loving orphanage is minimal, then ask the orphans about its importance. God bless you! MJC

Missy J. - November 1, 2012 - 11:02 am

I know most of us would purchase the items flaw or flawless and the fact that you are willing to discount and donate is so generous of you. Your actions speak volumes to you ethics, standards and overall character. I feel privileged to have found your company and even if I’m not lucky enough to cart the items, I am still thrilled with your offer!

Stacie Petta - November 1, 2012 - 10:25 am

What a great cause and I will be buying flaw or no flaw! : )

Pamela M. - November 1, 2012 - 10:23 am

Hi Denise – Great post! I know that you have plans to send the bracelets on to other people. I think about Amber and her family from time to time. Have you considered sending a bracelet on to someone like Jimmy Kimmel or Ellen Degeneres? They are two celebrities who pay it forward, make a difference, and help others because of their good fortune (Like YOU!). Please consider this…just think of the impact that it could make.

Safe travels to China! 🙂

Kristi Geilenfeld - November 1, 2012 - 10:04 am

This is why I Love Matilda Jane~ Have been a fan ever since Ebay days and will continue to be! Even though my daughter is starting to outgrow your clothing, I have plenty of little cuties to send your way 🙂

CD - November 1, 2012 - 9:27 am

When God has his hand on things, it all works out–most of the time, we can’t see the path or the end result clearly, but when we trust and follow, the end result is always spectacular! Keep the faith! 🙂

Rebekah - November 1, 2012 - 7:55 am

Thank you for still selling them. They are two of my favorite Matilda Jane items EVER and I would have been crushed to have not had a chance to own them for my daughter. I LOVE the fact that when I look at them I will feel apart of something bigger and I wont be able to help but think of the girls in Kitale! Well played Matilda Jane! 🙂

Betsy r - November 1, 2012 - 7:51 am

I love the heart of your company… It will keep me coming back forever. Thank you for helping do so many great things with what you have been given. It is contagious!

Lil - November 1, 2012 - 3:25 am

I think it’s great… I believe in Kara, Angels we can’t see and reasons for all things that happen. I will order and more than one. Shoot might buy lots of little girls one.. Just cus…. <3

Christy Dodd - November 1, 2012 - 2:20 am

God is amazing, He comes through us, to us, in the smallest of ways, in the most subtle of ways at times and in the most touching ways. Thank you for allowing us to help You, MJC, and everyone involved in the building of the orphanage. We proudly wear our MJC and with these special pieces it means just a little more.

Laura shigley - November 1, 2012 - 2:12 am

Love MJC and all that you ladies do! Denise, you have a big heart and your generosity is just awesome! Love buying and standing behind this company!!

Amber vaughn - November 1, 2012 - 2:01 am

I love this idea I think it’s perfect! Wow the stuff that you do for others touches my heart and inpires me. Thank you Denise.

Ann - November 1, 2012 - 1:22 am

Thank you! Reading this makes me love MJC more. I hope your work will continue to be blessed.

Sarah Flowers - November 1, 2012 - 12:35 am

Well done MJ!!! I have been a customer because I love your clothes….I will remain a devoted customer who sings your praises because of your class. We often don’t take enough time to look outside of ourselves…thank you for not only clothing our daughters, but teaching them as well.

Christy P - November 1, 2012 - 12:32 am

Regardless of the flaws I would still buy them in support of the cause alone. This is wonderful. Do not apologize for anything. Things happen. I love that you took the high road and instead of counting them as a loss you are turning them into so much more to many

Carrie Gugger kelley - November 1, 2012 - 12:24 am

A win-win for everyone. What a creative way to pay it forward.

deborah - November 1, 2012 - 12:05 am

Wonderful idea and great example of why I am always happy to support your business! Will buy for all three of my girls if I can manage to be fast enough!!

Brittney Bell - November 1, 2012 - 12:01 am

There moments and instances in life where I truly believe things happen for a reason and reading this blog post is one if them. It makes be want to take a step back from my life and remember to appreciate those shoes on my feet and the roof up there over my head. I have been so excited for your newest release and regardless of a flaw that has been discovered, you guys have taken that and decided to make the best of it. To put the money from those items towards something that makes this world a better place. This makes me want to buy these pieces even more. I am a perfectionist in a few areas of my personality and attention to detail is one if them -yet if I’m lucky enough to grab these defective items they hold value to me because they are still valued by their makers. You ladies are truly remarkable in taking something and making it so great. Thank you for being you!

Sandi - October 31, 2012 - 11:54 pm


rebecca smith - October 31, 2012 - 11:40 pm

and this is one of the reasons why i love you all and i dont personally know you.i admire everything you do to help people.there are good people in this world and you truly are one of them.i also think the lord lets thing happen for reasons and good things come from it so i just want to thank you for being the way you are.i truly feel blessed to get to dress my daughter in matilda jane and know a little about what goes on behind the scenes of such a great company. with love rebecca smith

Ida N. - October 31, 2012 - 11:39 pm

Denise – What a beautiful thing to do! We love you for your honesty and your heart. That heart of yours is leading you to do some very wonderful things for some people with great physical needs. Thank you for letting us be apart of your great adventure and your wonderful company! Many Blessings to you!

Angelia - October 31, 2012 - 11:37 pm

Welp. If my TK can cart one in 3 sizes for each…I’m buying for my girl. I hope someday she will understand the good she has done just by wearing your sweet clothes.

Gidget - October 31, 2012 - 11:34 pm

Love 🙂

Denise - October 31, 2012 - 11:26 pm

Thank you guys!! You have no idea how nervous I was about doing this…like really nervous but I do feel it is the right thing to do. thank you!

amanda c - October 31, 2012 - 11:24 pm

this company makes me proud. turning a negative to a BIG FAT positive… now that’s something to smile about!

Lisa - October 31, 2012 - 11:24 pm

What a wonderful idea from an amazing company. Thank you for making a positive change in this world and inspiring others to do the same.
Both outfits are adorable!!!

beckym - October 31, 2012 - 11:21 pm

I hope there is a big inventory of these items, because I would love to buy a few of each!! <3

Betsy Emerson - October 31, 2012 - 11:18 pm

As the momma of a spunky baby girl who was once an African orphan, I want to thank you for your generosity. How do I purchase these two items? Through my trunkkeeper? Several times I’ve heard you mention things about your life raising little boys while designing little girls clothes. I am also the momma to 3 amazing boys and I wouldn’t trade one of them for anything! But if you ever decide that you need a little princess, there are a lot of them waiting for families, just sayin (;
Again, I appreciate your willingness to be a blessing to others.

Brandi - October 31, 2012 - 11:16 pm

This is why we wear our Mjc proudly. Your kindness knows no bounds.

Blondy S. - October 31, 2012 - 11:15 pm

I just read your blog.. An oh man! I’m almost crying… I, am from a poor “third world” country.. This Means a lot to me, your generosity, and kindness. Teaching my children the meaning of generosity(and in this case being displayed as well as doing our part) must certainly be highlight of this upcoming Christmas season. Thank you again!

Jill L. - October 31, 2012 - 11:15 pm

I think that what you’re doing is wonderful. I get chills just thinking about the change this home will make for all of those girls!! Those pieces look adorable and remind us that we’re all flawed, no one is perfect, but we can still bring beauty and joy and happiness to others, flaws and all. 🙂

AB - October 31, 2012 - 11:13 pm

I think what you do is wonderful! I may not have bought these pieces (haven’t seen everything yet) just knowing what the proceeds are going to make me want them. I wish I had the capabilities to make a difference, but I do like to help where I can. All I can say is … Good for you, so proud to have your label on because of what you represent.

Erin McPherson - October 31, 2012 - 11:13 pm

It’ll make me smile every time my daughter wears the pieces knowing that the money went to help with such a great cause. 🙂 you’ve got my support!

Sarah L-B - October 31, 2012 - 11:12 pm

Denise, I agree it would be terrible to waste something. So, if good and help can come from this then that is wonderful. You often wear your heart on your sleeve, and some may try to take advantage, but the payoff is that you’ve been true to yourself and good will prevail 🙂 Your passion about what you do shines through and creates a very devoted customer! Pay it forward!

Kim - October 31, 2012 - 11:11 pm

The quality you put out there is top notch – and your generousity is too. Thank you!!!! Looking forward to seeing the collection.

Courtney C. - October 31, 2012 - 11:11 pm

WOW! What an amazing story and incredible act of kindness!

Christine Donovan - October 31, 2012 - 11:09 pm

No one and no thing is “flawless”.
For so many of us, it is our flaws that make up our beauty…
I think in this case, for MJC too 🙂

Gretchen Carrel - October 31, 2012 - 11:03 pm

How touching that you continue to give back so much! I’m so in awe of your generosity! God Bless you! And He has!

Megan Maddox - October 31, 2012 - 11:01 pm

I think this is a great win/win solution for everyone!!! I certainly appreciate that you want your clothing to be top quality – but agree it would be so sad for these pieces not to be worn by cute girls all over! I am thrilled some of my money (as i plan on purchasing these two pieces) is going to help complete the orphanage even more! Keep up the great work Denise – I truly appreciate your honesty and love that you are making lemonade from lemons – and you are sharing it with so many people!!!

Amanda L - October 31, 2012 - 11:01 pm

What better way to turn a situation like this into a way to bless others. I love your heart!

Kylie Lee - October 31, 2012 - 10:59 pm

Small flaw, Big Flaw it doesnt matter, all that matters is that you are helping others and that in its self is worth it! I cant wait to buy tomorrow and spread the word to my friends what a great way to own your very first piece of MJ and for such an AMAZING cause, thanks for all you do, your constant generosity is INTOXICATING! 🙂

Mindy - October 31, 2012 - 10:58 pm

My. Mother in law always says “a blind man would be happy to see it” so with that said, I’m sure us moms will be happy to have them, and we love “play clothes” great idea to give to that orphanage even more 😉 god bless, now fingers crossed my tk will be able to get them for my 2 girls!

Meredith - October 31, 2012 - 10:56 pm

Sounds like “lemonade” 🙂 I TOTALLY love your plan!!!!

Holly Lafferty - October 31, 2012 - 10:55 pm

goosebumps. and more goosebumps.

and then… i knew i REALLY wanted those two pieces from the first glimpse i saw of them.
and now i know we NEED them.
cute and budget friendly AND for a FANTASTIC cause. well, that never happens.

love and love and love

laurie - October 31, 2012 - 10:52 pm

Everything works together for a reason…I think your explanation makes perfect sense and that God has a hand in this…well done!!