Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Ethical Fashion Find: Patriotic Style

Patriotism on the back of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee tour and Olympic fever has hit an all-time high, which is delightful to see. In the spirit of all things Blighty, I'm sharing my top three ethical pieces that are inspired by, or made in, Britain (and if you're lucky, a bit of both).

Nancy Dee Brooke Dress in Jubilee
Ever the maestros of jersey, the ladies from Nancy Dee do not disappoint with this Brooke dress. Featuring their exclusive absract Jubilee print in blue, red, white and taupe, it is lovingly cut from bamboo and organic cotton in a classic tea dress style with a flared skirt and fitted body. I'd recommend teaming this with simple and chic jewellery from a brand like Made and platform wedges from Olsenhaus.

People Tree Cycling Mini Dress
Motifs and illustrations are definitely in this season, with everything from owls to moustaches. Embrace a motif with meaning with this quirky Cycling mini dress from People Tree. Created following the brand's Circles of Hope competition, it represents the key countries it has worked with over the last 20 years and aptly reflects the success Team GB had in the cycling events. Wear it with tights or jeans and ethical sneakers from Ethletic.

 Hattie Rickards for Made Bone Circle Pendant
In the spirit of the many many medals won at the London 2012 Olympic Games, and a record number of golds for the Brits, it would be wrong of me not to include a gold pendant. This Bone Circle Pendant was designed by Hattie Rickards for Made, a brand that creates stunning jewellery in partnership with craftspeople in developing countries and uses bone that is a natural by-product of the food industry in Kenya.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Ethical Fashion Focus: The Rise & Rise of Stella McCartney

Team GB Kit Stella McCartney
The Kit: Olympic Champions Sir Chris Hoy, Victoria Pendleton, Andy Murray and Jessica Ennis

Designer of Champions
The finale of the London 2012 Olympic Games tonight marks sees the end of Team GB's most successful Games in history with 65 medals - 29 of them gold - and the start of the build up to the Paralympics, where a record 2.1 million spectators will watch athletes compete in 21 sports.

The Games have also been a resounding success for Stella McCartney; British fashion designer, eco warrior and daughter of pop royalty. She has been responsible for being the first ever leading designer to deck out Olympic and Paralympic teams in a kit that is both functional and fashionable, representing a new generation of champions.

Stella McCartney AW12
Stella McCartney AW12

Enduring Ethics
After graduating from the legendary Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London in 1995, Stella became the Creative Director of Chloe in Paris and launched her own fashion house in 2001. Keeping her clothes ethical has always been important to her - as a lifelong vegetarian, she pioneered the use of leather substitutes in haute couture and does not use fur in her designs.

As well as ensuring her main ranges are eco-friendly, she has also launched her own organic skincare range CARE, designs a sport range for Adidas and an eco sunglasses collection. Now, Stella has gone one step further and launched her first fully ethical lingerie diffusion collection, aptly named 'Stella'.

Stella McCartney MeshStella McCartney Smooth
Stella McCartney Lace

 Stella by Stella McCartney Lingerie Collection for AW12

A New Collection
Crafted from organic cotton and recycled metal trims and underwiring, it features three key styles; Stella Smooth, Stella Mesh and Stella Lace - all made from luxurious materials using the latest technology to make them super-lightweight and almost invisible. Look out for the blue python print in the Stella Smooth style and the innovative Supernatural bra, which has been developed to provide a great cleavage and a naked fit whilst being completely wire-free.

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Something For A Rainy Day!

I just HAD to share these with you! Joules' Spring/Summer 2011 collect is utterly gorgeous but my absolute favourite pieces from the collection have to be these awesome wellies! Available in five different prints, they are a stylish but fun way to stay dry this spring.

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Fashion Icon: Gareth Pugh

Gareth Pugh is one of the reasons I love fashion and the arts; he mixes performance, beautiful imagery and skillful design to create an iconic reputation, and 2011 is no different. I have always loved the intensity and darkness that comes with Pugh's collections, and while his creations are usually not meant to be worn (they are works of art in themselves), the inspiration they bring to the fashion and art world is incredible.

This video is Pugh's offering to Pitti Uomo 2011 and is directed by Ruth Hogben, a filmmaker and Director of Fashion Film at Nick Knight's SHOWstudio in London. It is through this explosively creative collaboration that Hogben and Pugh have pretty much thrown out the rulebook on how collections are presented to the industry, and to the world. While I am usually a traditionalist at heart (I still love CDs and looking at old vinyls and 3D cinema is usually a no go), when a film as wonderful as this pops up I can't help but think that this is a natural progression.

Of course, normal catwalk shows will always have their place - think of the great showmanship of Viktor & Rolf and the late Alexander McQueen - but in the right context and with the right designer, these videos can transport you to another world, right inside the mind of the designer. Check out the video above, it will not disappoint!


Video courtesy of SHOWstudio

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Eco Advances: The New Generation

It looks like the New Year is set to be a big one for eco, and it’s certainly not pulling it’s punches! We are only little over a week into 2011 and the ethical world has pulled out the big guns: the cars. There are an estimated 600 million cars globally and the automobile market is, like the fashion industry, one of the highest earning and polluting sectors in existence today.

While those of us concerned about the impact our travel arrangements have on the environment have been trying to reduce our emissions by any means possible, it looks like the rise in petrol prices are forcing others to consider the option of electric and hybrid vehicles. These alternative cars have been around for decades but none have quite come up to the standard required of a high quality consumer-focussed vehicle.

Up until recently, the only car of this quality on the market was the Toyota Prius, with a hoard of celebrity admirers such as Cameron Diaz, Jack Black and Brad Pitt. However, thanks to some big names in the industry, it looks like a wider range electric and hybrid cars will soon be on the market and available to everyone. The North American Auto Show in Detroit this week saw General Motor’s Chevrolet Volt, an electric-petrol hybrid, win the coveted North American Car of the Year Award, with the Nissan Leaf coming in as a close second.

Ford has also jumped on the ethical bandwagon (which, of course, is not bad thing), unveiling not one but THREE hybrid and electric models – the C-Max Hybrid which does an impressive 41 miles to the gallon, the C-Max Plug In which is a plug in hybrid, and the Ford Focus Electric; a battery electric vehicle.

While there have been concerns in the past over the reliability of electric and hybrid cars, the recent technological developments are sure to put many people’s minds at ease and even encourage them to make a purchase. What’s more, a hybrid is a perfect option for those of you not comfortable with the idea of a fully electric vehicle. Whatever you choose, whether its an electric, hybrid, or a bicycle, making eco an option is one of the best things you can do in 2011 – it can save you quite a bit of moolah, and maybe even top up your good karma!


Images Courtesy of Ford

Happy 2011!

Well, slap my wrist and call me naughty! I admit that due to a HUGE pile of uni work and other extra-curricular activities (yes, I know, GEEK) I have seriously neglected my blog and I do apologise profusely! However, I am now back, very much focussed and looking forward to what 2011 will bring.

Before we delve into the ethical delights of the new year, I just want to take a moment to shamelessly plug a selection of things I have poked my nose into over the past few months (just so I don't look completely useless and neglectful of all things eco... I did say this would be shameless...).

Firstly, I have had the wonderful and exciting opportunity to work with Tori Mistick of EcoFashionistas since the beginning of September. Based in America Tori is responsible for some of the best ethical fashion and lifestyle spots and advice in the industry, and has also been kind (and brave) enough to let me loose as a weekly guest writer on her blog. It has been a fab experience and I hope it continues for a long while yet! Check out her blog at http://www.ecofashionistas.com/

Secondly, another lovely lady has allowed me to run riot styling in the Student Union's SONAR magazine. Thanks to Laura, Editor Extraordinaire, I have had the opportunity to meet some awesome models, photographers and make up artists and go out on location to produce some beautiful images (Issue 2 was a Gothic shoot and can be found at http://issuu.com/sonarmagazine/docs/sonarmagazineissuetwo/1, and Issue 3 was a men's countryside shoot that can be found at http://issuu.com/sonarmagazine/docs/sonarissuethree).

Lastly I have also been spreading the ethical word as a guest writer for My Retail Heaven's Online Magazine. My Retail Heaven also sell a range of ethical clothes and products, so check them out here: http://www.myretailheaven.co.uk/magazine/index.php


Tuesday, 28 September 2010

One To Watch: Jane Bowler

Old shower curtains, bath mats and random pieces of plastic are not usually the materials of choice for a designer, even an ethical one. But for Jane Bowler, a recent graduate from the Royal College of Art, these bits and pieces that we just discard without a thought are her inspiration for her Masters graduate collection.

Concerned with sustainability, Bowler aims to make pieces that last forever in our fast fashion, throwaway society. While I love her works and think they are beautiful and striking, I am unsure as to how making garments that last for thousands of years will help the environment. Nevertheless, anyone who highlights the need for sustainable fashion is on the right track.