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How recovery from drug abuse helped shape designer Heidi Smith’s career

Published On: 05-02-2016 in Category: recovery


The alcohol and drug recovery process is not as simple as it may sound. Coping with withdrawal symptoms and relapse is really difficult, for which one must seek professional help and support. One must also be confident and determined to win the battle with addiction, otherwise the recovery process may prolong for years.

Such was the case of Heidi Smith, founder and owner of local apparel line Addictive Designs, who evolved into a new being after her 25-year battle with drug addiction. Her situation had reached a point where she was about to lose her toddler son’s custody five years ago.

Smith, who hails from Vancouver, has been clean for the past five years. During her recovery process, her passion for graphic design got reignited. Using this renewed vigor and her previous experience in fashion, she launched her brand Addictive Designs, of screen-printed tanks in 2015.

Talking about her success, Smith told the Straight, “I wanted those of us in recovery to be no different than the rest of society.”

Smith bagged the biggest opportunity of her life when she got to showcase her designs at the 88th Annual Academy Awards in February 2016. Each garment is inscribed with a positive, empowering phrase that is inspired by the experiences at the rehabilitation center.

She personally delivered products from her clothing line to over 100 celebrities at the Oscars gift lounge. This year’s Oscar swag bag was worth over $200,000. In case Smith’s products garner celebrity endorsement, life will take a new turn for her and her son.

With her brand gaining popularity in the industry, Smith realized that many people identified with her messages. “Originally, my messages were based on my experiences in the start of my recovery and how it resonated for me,” Smith told the Straight.

Her shirts have reached a wide variety of women, such as fitness enthusiasts who get motivated by the inspiring lines on the shirt and look forward to life leaving behind their pain and struggle.

When to seek treatment?

Recognizing and continuing to do what helps you stay well should be a key part of the plan for treatment and care. Thus, learning to be an expert in the field that you love can help in the recovery process. Anyone going through a recovery program should latch on to something that can help them give a new meaning to life outside the rehab.

Whatever be the situation, if you feel unable to cope, or to keep yourself safe, it’s important to seek help and support. One should chalk out a plan and know the best techniques to de-escalate a crisis and know where to head to when you need help.

It is not easy for anyone to fight the vicious cycle of addiction, recovery and relapse and going back to square one. If you or someone you love is dependent on drugs and displays increasingly erratic behavior, contact the Los Angeles Drug Treatment and Rehab Center before it grows into an unmanageable problem. Visit us online or call at 213-986-2445 for customizable treatment options and available resources in your area.

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