Life has been super busy and I am sorry that I haven’t had as much time as usual to blog about ethical fashion. I have been really busy with work (in a good way!), I have just enrolled to do a Diploma in Digital Marketing and campercan season has finally arrived, so this weekend was spent our first trip of the year to WestonSuper Mare.
Although I haven’t been blogging as much as I would like, I have been sticking to my ‘no new clothes for a year’ sustainable fashion challenge. Now three months into the year, I haven’t bought any new clothes. Actually it has been pretty easy, especially as I have been so busy, I don’t have time to think about shopping. The time that I do have I try to use relaxing and spending time with family and friends rather than spending money on stuff I don’t need. So far it is proving to be a win win situation.
As time is ticking on and I have another super busy day tommorrow, I thought I would just share a few Instagrams of my Easter weekend.
We went on a lovely coastal woodland walk – enjoying the best of both worlds, beautiful views of the sea and lots of mud for my daughter to stomp in!
We cruised the seafront from Sand Bay to Weston on the open top bus. A journey which I never tire of on a sunny day.
We took the girls on a donkey ride.
We walked along the beach
I hid eggs and chocolate bunnies around the campsite, the girls found them and scoffed them.
I have discovered my new favourite hairstyle for camping, braids. They stop my hair
getting tangled up in the wind. It was great to also have the chance to wear my Patagonia T shirt which sums up just how I feel with its slogan ‘Live Simply’
I hope you had a lovely Easter weekend and managed to make the most of the fantastic weather. What have you been up to?
Hat – Pachacuti Jacket – upcycled from a vintage dressing gown
Fairtrade cotton vest top – Marks and Spencers
Necklace – Made
Jeggings – Oxfam
Shoes – Clarks
Bag – Reclaim Bags
On Saturday I took the girls over to Cribbs Causeway to check out the ‘Green is the New Black’ upcycled fashion show, an event organised by the St Vincent’s charity as part of Bristol Fashion Week. The fashion show featured some amazing upcycled fashion created by children from local Bristol schools. Of course I took the opportunity to wear an upcycled jacket that I created from a vintage kimono dressing gown with a bag by Reclaim mamde from recycled inner tubes. Unfortunately I had to leave my lovely Pachacuti hat behind in the car as the weather was atrocious and I was worried I might loose it in the wind.
It is great to see so much interest in recycled fashion by school children (hopefully the future of the fashion industry) and I was genuinely impressed by the creations which included a dress made from a deconstructed suit and other pieces made using newspaper, crisp wrappers, upcycles scarves and ties and bottle tops. I definitely think upcycled fashion is a great choice especially if you like to look individual and stand out from the crowd.
I have been meaning to do more upcycling, especially since starting my no new clothes for a year challenge. Unfortunately, I haven’t managed to do anything, strugging a bit for both ideas and time! This fashion show has definitely given me some great ideas, now I just need to make myself some time.
Do you have any good ideas or sources of inspiration for upcycled fashion? You can check out my ideas board on Pinterest here.
I hope you are having a fabulous start to the week and looking forward to the Easter break!
I am loving the new Braintree clothing collection for spring which features some super flattering tunic style dresses, drapey cardigans, bohemian skirts and slouchy trousers. The unique prints and patterns are inspired by spring blooms, Japanese inspired florals, patchwork and classic stripes. Fabrics include soft organic cotton and bamboo jersey which are both cool and comfortable to wear, sustainable hemp and ethically produced wool. They also use recycled polyester, tencel made from recycled wool and rayon, all more eco friendly alternatives to conventional cotton or synthetic fabrics(made from petro chemicals). Having bought clothes from Braintree clothing in the past, pieces which still now feature in my wardrobe and every day outfits, I can vouch for the beautiful quality of the clothes.
They also have a fab new website design with the Bthoughtful blog full of ideas and tips on style, living and being.
If you are planning a super chilled out and ‘thoughful’ spring and summer (I certainly am), Braintree clothing have the perfect choice of clothes to wear!
Of course life isn’t just about getting out and about, we all need a little down time and Braintree clothing has a lovely new collection called Braintree Be which features super comfy but stylish clothes that you won’t feel ashamed to pop out to the shop in. Perfect for relaxing on the sofa after work or on weekends or a chic choice for a yoga or pilates class. These are just the sort of clothes I love to wear post workout.
Braintree Clothing have kindly offered readers of this blog a lovely 10% of when they use code STYLEEYES10.
What do you think of Braintree Clothing? and how are you planning to chill out and enjoy yourself this summer?
Dress – Nancy Dee
Necklace – People Tree
Shoes – Clarkes
As Sunday was Mother’s Day, I decided to get a bit dressed up in my favourite dress for a bit of Sunday Lunch, cooked by Mr S. If you are a regular visitor to my blog, you will know that Nancy Dee is one of my favourite ethical fashion brands, with organic cotton and bamboo jersey pieces which are both comfy and flattering to wear, making it the perfect choice for a day of eating. The necklace is from People Tree a few years ago, I haven’t worn it as much as I could have done, but now I have tried it with this dress and love how it looks, I definitely think I will wear it again soon. It is the shape of a round collar embellished with sparkly beads, just the sort of beautiful, intricate and detailed fashion that People Tree excels at.
I was spoilt with lovely cards and pressies from my girls including the Deliciously Ella cookbook which was definitely on my wish list. I have been making a conscious effort to try and eat more healthily by cutting down (almost cutting out) both alcohol and meat. I have also been cutting my sugar intake by snacking on some of the recipes from the Deliciously Ella blog. The book will make it a little easier to cook the recipes as I don’t have a tablet which I can use to view recipes in the kitchen. I may be imagining it, but since switching to my healthier lifestyle (only 2 or 3 weeks so far), I have definitely felt like I have got more energy.
Unfortunately on Sunday, I blew the healthy eating with not one but two breakfasts, one made by each of them and a ‘few’ glasses of wine. Here are just a few instagrams from my Mother’s Day.
My daughter has been on for a while about making a dress for her tiny teddy. Mother’s Day seemed like the perfect time to get on and do it.
My youngest made me this breakfast with Greek Yoghurt, bananas, almonds and honey. Not only was it delicious but set me up well for the 2 hours of exercise classes I did ij the morning.
Lovely cards from my girls
Unfortunately I didn’t get the chance to spoil my mum this Mother’s Day as we have to share her around. But I will be making up for it in a few weeks time when I see her.
On checking my Google analytics stats for the blog the other day, I was quite surprised to find that more than half of the visitors to my blog are men. Strange but true, according to Google.I kind of assumed that men weren’t too bothered about ethical clothes, but pleased to see they are. As I haven’t posted about ethical fashion menswear for quite some time, I thought it would be good to give a little update on ethical fashion for men this spring.
This fun shirt by Braintree Clothing is made from sustainable organic cotton (45%) and hemp (55%). Braintree are committed to both people and planet with a comprehensive code of conduct, a commitment to invest in helping their factories to grow with them and investment in sustainable fabrics, thoughtful design and considerate manufacture.
Get 10% off at Braintree Clothing with discount code STYLEEYES10
People Tree have a lovely menswear collection for SS15 including this organic cotton palm tree t shirt. Mr S particularly loves the fit of People Tree t shirts. I love the fact that buying them helps to make a positive difference to the lives of those involved in their manufacture.
Rapanui is a cool brand and award winning eco fashion company making fab organic cotton clothes using renewable energy on the Isle of Wight.
For spring TOMS have some fab men’s sneakers in fresh colours including these striking woven black and white ones. For every pair of TOMS shoes bought, TOMS will give a pair of shoes to someone in need.
Timberland make some very stylish clothes and also have a strong commmitment to creating clothes ethically and sustainably. This polo shirt is a classic piece that will never go out of fashion.
Do you have any favourite ethical fashion menswear brands that you would like to share?
For today’s Thrify Thursday post, I decided to share an idea I have for upcycling an old tie. It is super easy and only takes a minute so I have decided to create my first ever YouTube video to show how I did it. Whilst I have enjoyed making this video, I am not sure it will be a regular thing, in fact this may well be a one off!
Whilst I love wearing scarfs in my my hair, they can be a little bit flimsy and slip out of place. I find that a tie makes a much better hair accessory as it stays in place better. I also love the variety of bold patterns, rich colours and glossy silk fabrics ties are made from.
It was pretty easy to make. As you can see from the video, you just pull the tie under your hair and tie at the top. Then tie in a bow and loop the loose end back through the centre of the bow once or twice. It took me a few attempts to work out exactly where to tie it to get the right size bow. You can make the bow bigger or smaller depending on how flamboyant you would like to be.
And here is the finished look (which I accidently edited out of the end of the video).
This probably has to be one of the thriftiest posts that I have ever done as it costs nothing to borrow a tie out of your mans wardrobe, if you can get away with it. Mr S wouldn’t let me near his ties but I did happen to have a few lovely silk ties which I bought from Oxfam to make silk dyed Easter eggs. When they arrived, I loved the patterns so much that I decided they were too good to chop up and dye eggs with so I am keeping them to put in my hair instead. They also make lovely belts to wear with dresses.
Oxfam have a fabulous selection of silk ties including vintage and designers ones. I am lusting after all of the Liberty prints ties in their online shop!
I hope you are having a lovely week, mine has been pretty tiring so far. I can’t wait for the weekend.
I have recently become a little bit obsessed with Deliciously Ella, a natural food and healthy living blog filled with some seriously delicious but extremely healthy food. If you follow me, you may have noticed my Insatgram and Twitter are filled with food posts. Since Christmas, I have decided to try and cut down on the amount of sugar and processed carbohydrates in mine and the childrens diet. I wouldn’t say that we ate badly but some bad food habits were starting to creep in and both for the sake of my own and my children’s health, I think it is really important to focus on eating a diet that is rich in fruit and vegetables and doesn’t contain too much of the bad stuff.
What I really love about Deliciously Ella is that she doesn’t recommend depriving yourself as she has lots of alternatives that are filling and satisfying but also help to wean you off sugar (which is actually a bit addictive). I have also recently switched to only eating meat very occasionally instead of most days, so it is great to get some ideas for protein rich plant alternatives that taste amazing. You can check out Ella’s video above for some great tips on how to quit bad habits and get healthy.
The sweet treats section of the blog is definitely where most of my attention has been but I have also been trying out some of the delicious salad ideas (homemade hummus and roast Kale pictured above) for mine and the childrens pack lunches. Yesterday I made a batch of sweet potato brownies which were an outstanding success, deliously rich and gooey with a really chocolately and slightly bitter flavour. I added my own extra ingredient of some pecan nuts to up their protein content even more.
Do you think about eating natural food? have you checked out the Deliciously Ella blog or cookbook.
Fairtrade Fortnight 2015 is from 23rd February to 8th March. It celebrates and promotes Fairtrade products including coffee, sugar, cocoa, tea, bananas and cotton and the positive impact that buying them can have on the lives of the farmers growing them. Fairtrade is about better prices, decent working conditions and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers. It’s about supporting the development of thriving farming and worker communities that have more control over their futures and protecting the environment in which they live and work. The Fairtrade mark is a guarantee for shoppers that the products have been produced in accordance with social, economic and environmental standards set out by Fairtrade Labelling Organisations International .
Whilst you can buy clothes made from (certified) Fairtrade cotton, the Fairtrade mark is only used to certify commodities rather than manufactured products like clothes. The term ‘Fair Trade Fashion’ is used to describe clothing that has been manufactured in accordance with fair trade principles. Fair trade fashion is often handmade in developing countries and involves a trading partnership, based on dialogue, transparency, and respect placing importance on the rights of marginalized producers and workers. Yup it is pretty confusing but both certified Fairtrade cotton clothing and fair trade fashion are both good options if you are looking for beautiful clothes that make a positive difference to peoples lives. Here are some of my favourite places to buy them:
People Tree – the pioneer of ethical fashion, creating amazing clothes made in co operatives around the world with organic and fairtrade cotton.
Pachacuti – Amazing panama hats which preserve traditional artisanal skills in the Andes through combining high quality, environmentally-friendly materials with Fair Trade working practices.
Bibico – beautiful clothes handmade by fair trade groups in India and Nepal.
Sessun – a sustainable fashion brand that uses organic and fairtrade cotton wherever possible.
Adini – a very affordable ethical fashion brand with its factories being certified by Sedex.
Nomads – Beautiful hand made clothing that comply with a comprehensive Fair Trade policy. Nomads is recognised by the British Association of Fair Trade Shops.
Have you ever shopped with any of these brands? If so, what do you think?
I wanted to dedicate this weeks thrifty Thursday to the humble shift dress. I have a number of different shift dress and being quite short with out much of waist, the style always works well for me. The shift dress pictured above (the picture was taken in 2011 but I have been wearing the exact same shift dress today) cost me around £10. Not bad for a dress that I wear so regularly. As shift dresses are such a classic style, they are not usually difficult to pick up in a charity shop.
I find a plain colour is perfect for showing off my favourite accessories including statement necklaces and scarves. I also love a patterned shift for a brighter look for the evening or worn with a jacket for work.
Oxfam Fashion just happen to have a lovely selection of shift dresses at extremely thrifty prices. Here are my faves:
For Valentines Day myself and Mr S went into Bath for Tapas. My outfit features a dress and jacket by Nancy Dee, one of my favourite ethical brands at the moment. Nancy Dee makes all of their clothes in the UK from beautiful soft, comfy and cosy organic cotton jersey fabric. It is a real joy to wear. I couldn’t help accessorising my outfit with my glitter heart necklace by another ‘Made in Britain’ fashion brand, Tatty Devine. If I can’t wear a heart necklace on Valentines Day then when can I wear it!
The boots are my faithful Dream in Green boots which are made from vegetable tanned leather. This is a more eco friendly alternative than conventionally tanned leather. I love these boots as they go with just about anything and the wedge heel means that they add a bit of height but are still really easy to walk in.
It was lovely to have a bit of time to ourselves for once as life can get so crazy busy with work and the children’s busy schedule of homework, clubs and socialising. On Saturday I also did my first training walk in preparation for a 30 mile walk across the Brecon Beacons. It was amazing to get out in the fresh air early in the moring and the perfect opportunity to catch up with my 2 friends who I haven’t seen since Christmas. As usual the weekend has just flown by and I can’t believe that it is back to work tommorrow.
I will finish by sharing a few Instagrams from the last week.
I love dream catchers and was delighted to get this very cute mini one along with the seventies poncho that I ordered from LA based, Desert Cat Vintage on Etsy.
This is probably one of my favourite breakfasts ever. Huevos Rancheros.It is basically egg poached in a salsa (tomatoes, onions, chillis and peppers), served on warm tortilla with grated cheese and avocado.Jamie Oliver has a recipe for it here.
My daughter loves having Bento lunch boxes or ‘themed lunch’ as she calls it. I don’t have time to make it every morning but this week I managed to make a Valentines themed lunch with teddy sandwishes and heart shaped veg.
My Tatty Devine heart necklace
As soon as I sit down for a second, the cat jumps straight on my lap.
Red roses from Mr S.
A very yummy Valentines cake made by the girls.
I hope that you had a fab weekend, whatever you did.