Being completely oblivious to the latest trends and fashions has its benefits. I spend very little money on clothes, happily avoid horrifying changing room mirrors (or at least my reflection in them) and I rarely have to upgrade my clothes and shoes unless they are literally falling apart. Win win!
I usually take the zero waste approach to clothing and either do swapsies with my friends or buy in charity and second hand stores, but every now and then I have to venture out and kit myself out with some new garments. This has been true over the last couple of months as I’ve had to transition from flip flop tie dye wearing traveller hippy, to semi professional city dweller as I settle into my new life in Sydney.
Shoes in particular have been on my mind of late and – as anyone who has ever tried to navigate the world of ethical clothing will know – there is usually the choice between stereotypical ugly clunky vegan footwear or highly bespoke, beautiful but deadly expensive clogs.
So what is the deal with footwear and vegans anyway? Whats ethical and whats not? and more importantly, where on Earth can you get some decent vegan footwear at a reasonable cost?!! Fear not my lovelies, I may have a couple of answers…
Continue reading A Lazy Guide to Buying Vegan Friendly Shoes
The last two weeks in India has flown by in a magical, colourful blur and it feels like I have been here for years. I have seen sunrise ceremonies on the river Ganges in Varanasi, been serenaded by Indian army veterans on a steam train in Shimla and browsed through rainbow markets of fresh produce in Ragasthan. The sights, sounds and smells of India charm the senses and no day is ever the same. Well, there’s actually thing thing which stays consistent everyday: the scorching heat! Due to an irregular monsoon this year (is this the effects of climate change?) India is experiencing higher temperatures than what is normal for October and we have been facing days of 36-40 degrees in most areas. It’s almost impossible to walk around for long during midday and I spend every single day red faced and sweaty as I try to find yet another sweet lime stall to quench my thirst.
Continue reading Staying cool with Royal Robins for an iconic royal visit
I can’t believe its already day 5 of Zero Waste Week and what a week it’s been!! I must admit, I’ve been a terrible blogger and been so knee deep in my last week of work and packing to move house, that I haven’t had much time to blog!
But it’s not all been zero waste naughtiness over here, and I’ve been having lots of fun passing all my unwanted belongings on to friends, and on sites like Gumtree and Streetbank.
However, some items – especially clothes and small reusable containers – are actually easily upcycled with a few very easy tweeks, to breathe new life into them. So, though I have been looking at things as I pack thinking “will I miss it in the year I’m away, or should I part with it now?” I’ve also found myself asking “could I use this in someway in my backpack?” It’s a travel hoarders dream!!!
My very good friend Emily recently inspired me with the idea of T Shirt Hacks; quick and easy fashion updates which don’t involve a thread or a needle. My idea of upcycing heaven! This is perfect for making the clothes I’ve been wearing all summer in the UK, new and exciting for my summery days on the road!
I had a little dig to find some examples of how Emilys hacks works in reality before I braved a pair of scissors to my clothes on my 2 weeks off before my flight, and it appears there are 100s of ways you can update a simple T shirt with no sewing skills whatsoever! Here’s just three of them:
Continue reading Easy T Shirt Hacks for the Lazy Seamstress
I think we’ve all experienced that feeling of excitement, which quickly turns to anxiety, when a special invitation leaves us freaking out about what to wear. It’s one of the oldest and most unavoidable situations, no matter how comfortable and confident you feel within yourself. Whether it’s a party, wedding, conference, or simply meeting someone new for the first time, we all want to make a good impression and visually represent who we think we are inside.
So, when I was recently invited to attend the Observer Ethical Awards, with the scary sounding dress code of “Sustainable style”, I experienced this vain but natural freak out. If I could even claim to have some form of style in the first place, I would feel a little less nervous. But unfortunately, my outfits usually consist of charity shop hauls and friends hand-me downs. Naturally due to my “make do and mend” approach not simply that I’m a complete fashion-phobe!
However , determined to at least attempt some kind of eco sophistication, I did some digging to see if I could find my own unique sustainable style, without spending more money on one outfit than I would normally spend in a year at the Cats Protection charity shop!
The good news is, my search was easier and closer to home than I thought. It turns out Cornwall is already a bit of a hub for eco fashion, so I don’t have to roam too far to kit myself all green and shiny!
Like many counties across the UK, Cornwall has always been extremely proud of its own home-grown produce; not least because down here we see ourselves as a county within itself! From clotted cream and pasties, to tin mining and the iconic surf culture; Cornwall naturally and seamlessly balances both its historic and modern identities. So it shouldn’t really be any surprise that 5 of the best ethical fashion brands happen to be Cornish… Continue reading Is Cornwall a new hub for ethical fashion?
For those of you who have ever met me in person, you’ll know that I am the least fashionable person out there. I take the ethos of reduce, reuse and recycle to heart when it comes to clothes; and prefer a rummage in a charity shop rather than a credit card binge on the highstreet. This serves three main purposes:
Firstly, I don’t contribute to the throwaway fashion economy, in which you can buy a whole outfit for less than the person who made it earns in a year. Secondly, and rather vainly, I don’t have to feel old and frumpy in the latest fashions; choosing instead to stick to my 90s grunge look which has served me well for the majority of my 20s. Lastly, and most lazily of all, I don’t have a clue when it comes to “ethical fashion” and prefer to hide away from having to actively research the rabbit warren which is the clothes and shoe industry.
If only Vivienne Westwood could come shopping around Truro with me, and help me find a bargainous green outfit which makes me feel 3 stone lighter. But alas! The trains getting down here are a bloody nightmare. But even the most clueless of us occasionally fall in love. And when I fall in love, I can become pretty wistful and dreamy. Meet the Amanda Blue – the most beautiful shoe I have seen in my life. Continue reading Bourgeois Boheme: From Shoe Apathy to Shoe Passion
Along with my purse, phone and keys, I carry my bobble water bottle wherever I go. It’s not necessarily that I’m a big water drinker (in fact, sometimes I can go all day without drinking any at all) but I never want to be caught short and forced to buy bottled water from the shop. Ever since I discovered more about the devastating effects of plastic pollution, the idea of buying water bottled when its readily available in taps makes no sense to me.
That said, we all get caught out once in a while, and the fact is that billions of plastic bottles continue to be produced worldwide. But what if these bottles could be recycled, and re-appropriated into something useful? Well I recently came across a company who is trying to salvage our plastic bottles, and turn them into things we can wear and use; and a lot of big brands are in on it.
Continue reading Plastic Bottle Fashion