Dr Martens – A Brand With History

Dr Martens

Dress – Vintage
Leggings – People Tree
Dr Martens – Cloggs

I was recently contacted by Cloggs and asked if I would like to review a pair of Dr Marten boots. I have been considering buying some for a while as I used to wear them many years ago and they were super comfy, hard wearing and would be ideal for camping. I was sent a patent pair which I wore on a camping trip at the weekend (although the photograph was taken in at home before we left).

Back in the day I used to wear my DM’s with tassel skirts during my gothic stage, floral dresses and black tights in my grungey stage and with just about everything as a student. This weekend I couldn’t resist trying to sort of recreate this look with a vintage floral dress and leggings.

Dr Martens have a big historical connection for me but for Mr Style Eyes mean something different (I would at this point like to say that he is a bit older than me). When he saw them he immediately mentioned Mods and Skinheads as being the reason why his mother would not let him have a pair, parent eh!

The Dr Marten brand has now been around for over 50 years and in that time has clad the feet of many from punks to policemen, skinheads to socialists. Interestingly, the shoe was designed by Klaus Märtens a German Army Doctor to cushion and protect his ankle after a skiing accident. They didn’t become fashionable though until they were worm buy Pete Townshend, song writer and guitarist with The Who. Ever since they have been adopted not only by factory and other manual workers but also by a range of sub cultures who made them part of their uniform. In case you are interested, there is a book on the very subject Dr Martens – The Story of an Icon.

Dr Marten’s is not neccaserily a brand that you would consider as ethical but they do have a strong ethical policy and supplier code of conduct with which they aim to not only ensure the highest possible standards of business behaviour but work with suppliers exceed these standards. You can check out their code of conduct here.

When I asked about the ethics of the brand I was also informed.

We have recently started to stock a Dr Martens Vegan collection which offers Dr Martens two most iconic styles the 8 eye boot and the 3 eye shoe to the vegan customer. Due to recent technical advances it is now possible for the manufacturing process and materials used to be acutely vegan friendly. Dr Martens have symbolised their excitement for the vegan collection by creating a new sock logo. One of our favourites in the vegan collection is the popular 1460 boot in Cherry Red which features air cushioned soles and Felix rub-off none leather uppers.

For me what is great about this brand is that they are extremely well made and so will last for ages. They are the ultimate festival foot wear but also great for when you have a long way to walk and have to ditch the heels. Although Dr Martens are kind of on trend at the moment, they are also a bit of an anti fashion statement because they don’t really ever go out of fashion. This in itself kind of makes them a sustainable choice of footwear.

Have you ever owned a pair of Dr Martens? How did you wear yours?

I will leave you with just a few instagrams from my camping at the weekend.

Dr Martens

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

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Made In Britain

Nancy Dee Ethical Fashion

Ethical Fashion - Made in Britain

I have been really enjoying watching Mary Portas’s TV programme ‘The Bottom Line’ but also love the way that it has renewed the focus on clothing being Made in Britain. The funny thing is that I often go out of my way to buy Fairtrade and ethical clothing made abroad in countries like Africa or India so buying Made in Britain is the complete opposite. But I also think that it is important to support our own economy and help those in this country that are struggling to find a job and as the clothing industry is so huge their is probably room for both.

That said, I don’t neccaserily think that just because something is ‘Made in Britain’, it is ethical. For example, it may be made using cotton that is picked by children in Uzbekistan and grown using environmentally damaging pesticides. There are however some key benefits that I can see in buying clothes made in Britain, which include:

Supporting the British economy and providing jobs for those in Britain.
Preserving specialist skills for clothing manufacture in Britain.
Quality, British products are known for their high quality and workmanship.
Strict UK and EU working regulations ensure high standards in British factories and give greater confidence in that workers  have been treated well.
Cutting down on transportation and therefore carbon footprint of clothing.

I am not going to write any more about Mary Portas and her Kinky Knickers as I think most people will already have watched the programme. If you haven’t, you can find out more here. Instead I wanted to share some fantastic brands that are both ‘Made in Britain’, ethical and probably most importantly when it comes to fashion, look great!

The dress that I wearing in the pictures above is by Nancy Dee, an ethical and sustainable fashion brand that manufactures all if its clothing in the UK using a variety of sustainable materials including organic cotton, Bamboo, soya bean and modal. It is definitely one of my favourite dresses. It is beautifully made, unique and individal with only limited runs of designs using their own specially made fabrics (I have not seen anyone else out and about wearing my flamingo print dress), washes well and is really comfortable to wear. I also love the flattering cut. If you like the sound of Nancy Dee, please check out there website here which has a fantastic sale at the moment, including the Flamingo dress that I am wearing.

who made your pants

Who Made Your Pants a campaigning ethical underwear brand based in Southampton. Their pants are designed to sit flat under clothes, have no VPL, and be comfortable and all day fabulous. I saw a selection of them at the Good Fashion Show and I can vouch for the fact that they are beautifully made. They use fabric sold on by big underwear companies at the end of season and stop them ending up as landfill and they employ refugees from war torn countries like Afghanistan, Somalia, the Sudan in a woman only environment where they can feel safe, learn new skills and provide themselves with an income.organic Hiut Jeans

Another exciting ‘Made in Britain’ brand that has caught my eye recently is Hiut Denim. A brand that is all about reviving the jeans industry is a small Welsh town called Cardigan. I  spent many childhood holidays in Cardigan which is a seaside town in West Wales and also where my Grandparents lived and my Father grew up. My Grandfather was the Principle of the local technical college. Sadly over the years many young people have been forced to move away for Cardigan due to lack of job opportunities and the closure of the local jeans factory which employed 400 people and made 35,000 pairs of jeans a week in part contributed to this.

Hiut denim is bringing employment back to the area and allowing the people of Cardigan to do what they do best. It seems to be focussing on simplicty with just a few styles of jeans (at the moment) made incredibly well using the expertise from the people who were originally employed in the factory and high quality denim including organic and selvedge denim.

The brand is also trying to move away from the idea that clothing is a throw away commodity, instead making jeans that will be valued and treasured. They are the first ever company to make jeans with a history tag. Customers can register their jeans unique number with the HIstorytag website and then upload memories (or where you went, what you did). If the jeans are every passed on or donated to a charity shop, these memories will go with them.

I know there are many more amazing ethical ‘Made in Britain’ brands, many of which I hope to share with you soon. I will continue to support Fairtrade and brands which are working to alleviate poverty in other countries but I also love the idea of buying more locally and supporting people a little closer to home. As I don’t buy any fast fashion clothes manufactured in sweatshops, I definitely think it is possible for me to do both and as a result build a very stylish wardrobe packed with beautiful high quality clothes.

What do you think?

With warmest wishes

Ceri

Links À La Mode – The Eyes Of March

The Eyes of March

Edited By Taylor Davies

Here we are, the first day of March – can you believe it? Spring will officially start this month, flowers will start to bloom (we hope!) and winter will finally start to let us out of it’s icy grip. This week’s Links a la Mode selections run the gamut from fashion week round ups to DIY projects and runway color inspirations.

THE IFB WEEKLY ROUNDUP: LINKS À LA MODE: March 1st

Aspiring New Moms: Floral Silk Dresses

SPONSOR:

New Sandals at Shopbop: Steven, Yosi Samra, LD Tuttle, Report Signature, Aquazzura, Minkoff, Rachel Zoe, Acne, Miista, Premiata, Loeffler Randall, Sam Edelman Sandals & Pelle Moda Shoes

PLEASE READ IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PARTICIPATE

If you would like to submit your link for next week’s Links à la Mode, please register first, then post your links HERE. The HTML code for this week will be found in the Links a la Mode group will be published later today. ~Jennine

 

The Ethical Fashionistas Diary – February Events

There is so much going on with eco and sustainable fashion at the moment, I am struggling to keep up with it all. So I have decided to write a post about it all for February. I may well make this a regular feature provided there is enough interest and enough events to post about, please let me know if you hear about anything interesting relating to sustainable and ethical fashion!

February 9th – Traid Sew Good Workshop – London

Learn to Sew Good with the fashion recycling charity TRAID at monthly workshops held at the TRAID Camden store. Bring a garment you no longer wear, and we’ll give you the skills you need to fix, alter and revive your wardrobe. Workshops will be held on the second Thursday of every month between 6pm and 9pm. Entrance is free but booking is essential email sewgood@traid.org.uk or Tel: 020 7485 5253.

February 15th – Fashion Deconstructed – London

This event is organised by the Christian Aid Collective at a secret London address between 5 and 8pm. It features an underground catwalk which will showcase an array of vintage clothing, along with ethically sourced and upcycled designs by Emma Rees and Feng Ho and jewellery by Caipora. Attendees can also get involved with their own recycled fashion creation, as well as enjoy live graffiti, video installations and beats by Elad. The final details of the event will be posted here.

February 18th – The Good Fashion Show – London

The largest off-schedule event of London Fashion Week which is open to the public as well as trade and press. 100% ethical, sustainable, responsible fashion. 100% style to be held at London House. Tickets for exhibition and markets £5 and for evening fashion show £30. For further information and tickets visit www.thegoodfashionshow.org.

 

19th February – Vintage Fashion Fair London

One of the longest and most established of the vintage fashion fairs, this event, held in Primrose Hill, is the perfect  way to spend a leisurely Sunday afternoon of browsing. The fair has a great selection of clothing, accessories and textiles from a variety of decades, all sold by friendly and knowledgable stall holders. There are plenty of affordable pieces as well as some really special designer pieces. Checkout the website www.vintagefashionfairlondon.co.uk for further details and ticket offers.

If you also love vintage interiors and homewares, they are also running a fair in Primrose Hill this weekend (Feb 5th), apply through the website with code HOME1 for a free ticket.

The end of February also marks the beginning of Fair Trade Fortnight (27th Feb – 11th March) so keep your eyes out for lots more ethical fashion goings on.

With warmest wishes

Ceri X

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Links A La Mode – Fresh New Start

 

Fresh New Start 

Edited by: Collette Osuna of Statements in Fashion

Even though January is one brutal cold month in Michigan, it happens to be one of my favorites. It’s a brand New Year…..it’s the opportunity for each and every one of us to start with a fresh clean slate. What will you be taking on this year? A new hobby? Losing weight? Starting your own business? Bettering your blog? The ideas are only limited by your imagination, and I for one, cannot wait to begin this new adventure. This weeks links are chock full of awesome DIY ideas, product reviews, and ways to make yourself smile!

Have a fabulous month everyone!

THE IFB WEEKLY ROUNDUP: LINKS À LA MODE: JANUARY 12TH

SPONSOR:

New Dresses at Shopbop: Just Cavalli, BB Dakota, T Bags LA, Nightcap, SoLow, Zac Posen, Malene Birger, Phillip Lim, See by Chloe, Nanette Lepore, Tucker, Cut25 & Parker

 

30 Days of Ethical Fashion – Maisha Collective Fair Trade Scarves

Today on 30 Days of Ethical Fashion, I wanted to share with you Maisha Collective, an amazing organisation making some great Fair trade fashion.
 
Maisha Collective make unique hand dyed scarves. They are are based in Nairobi, Kenya and the scarves are created by a group of young refugee women from DR Congo, Somalia, Ethiopia, Sudan, and Burundi. These young women are empowered by the collectives to rebuild their lives with peace and dignity, helping them to develop confidence and gain important skills for future independence.
 
As the scarves are all handmade, it means that each one is unique. I love the deep colours and swirly patterns, perfect for adding a bit of colour to a dark winter outfit.
 
You can order Maisha Collective Fairtrade cotton scarves from Fashion Conscience.
 
With warmest wishes
 
Ceri x
 

Ethical Fashion Bloggers November DIY Round Up

I am so excited to present the first ever Ethical Fashion Bloggers monthly DIY round up featuring some very stylish pieces of clothing and accessories that have been cleverly upcycled by these talented bloggers. Enjoy!

Recycled Fashion – 80’s Rag Top

Misfits Vintage – If you can’t live without me, why aren’t you dead yet?

Oranges and Apples- Amazing Upcycled Bags By My Cloud Designs

Vintage Vixen – Get on Your Boots

Learning the Business of Fashion – DIY Projects…

Jean of all Trades – Windows 7 Takes the Fashion World by Storm

Style Eyes Ethical Fashion Blog – Refashioning DIY Tromp L’Oeil Top

Ethical Fashion Bloggers will be running a DIY round up on the third week of each month, if you would like to join in, you can find out how to join here.

With warmest wishes

Ceri X