Product Review – SPAIR Sandals

Do you ever wish you could slip out of your heels and into a pair of cool flip flops instead?

I was recently sent a pair of SPAIR Sandals which cleverly fold into a little pouch which will easily fit into most handbags. Should you need to wear them, them, the little pouch turns into a bag that can be used to carry your shoes home. I have seen similar ideas on the market before, but what I really loved about  Spair sandals is that they are 100% Recycled tires and earth-friendly leatherette.

They are actually a kind of solution to an environmental issue as stated on their website

improper disposal of over 300 million rubber tires per year is a  serious risk to our health and environment. Disease-carrying pests and  mosquitos breed in the stagnant water that collects in tire piles, and  spread deadly viruses like West Nile, encephalitis, and malaria.

Whilst I haven’t had the chance to do a manicure to show off the actual sandals that I was sent, I have given them a try and can confirm that they are super comfy. I think they would be fantastic for weddings when I almost always feel the need to kick my shoes off by the end of the day so that I can strut my stuff on the dance floor.

The shoes are available in 3 colours in the US from www.spairsandals.com

Would you find these useful?

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

Ethical Summer Shoes In the Spartoo Sale

Yippee summer has finally arrived. This is great news for me particularly as the children break up from school on Friday and weeks of being cooped up in the house with 2 energetic children doesn’t really appeal that much. Sunshine for us means picnics in the park, bike rides, days out and camping trips.

If this summer weather has taken you by surprise and you are planning on swapping your welly boots for something a little more elegant, Spartoo has a fantastic sale on ethical shoes. With some great reductions on all sorts of shoes from sandals and flip flops to heels and even trainers or ‘daps’ as they call them round here, you are sure to find what you need at a great price. The shoes in the sale include some of my favourite eco brands including Pikolinos, Dream in Green and Terra Plana. They are made with respect from the environment and many are either vegan or made using vegetable tanned leather. What I really love about these shoes though is that they are made for comfort and to last, perfect for when you have lots of walking to do.

Here are a few of my favourites:

ethical sandals

Ethical Sandals by Dream in Green

Wedges by Dream in Green

Pikolinos Sandals

Sandals by Pikolinos

Marilyn Court Shoes by Terra Plana

What fun things do you have planned for the summer?

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

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Six Items Challenge – Week 2

So here I am at the end of week 2 of the six items challenge. It has been a pretty busy week and I haven’t had the chance to spend much time thinking about what I wear and how to accessorise my chosen items in order to create a different outfit each day. I did manage to do something slightly different each day except one when I resorted to the easy outfit which I wore last week of just my ASOS printed trousers and t shirt. I also got the opportunity to wear some accessories that I have recently treated myself to a pair of earrings featuring Josephine Baker and a scarf from Accessorise.

This is my scarf  by Accessorise and my first ever attempt at wearing neon

I got this scarf from Oxfam Online and the necklace is by ethical jewellery brand Made UK. 

This beaded necklace is from People Tree and it is those black ballet pumps by sustainable shoe brand Melissa, perfect for the rain as they are plastic!

Thursday was a bit of an opt out on the accessories front but I am wearing shoe boots my my favourite ethical shoe brand Dream in Green.

This was the outfit I wore to my cousins birthday party on Saturday. I picked the scarf up in the week from a charity shop. The earrings are handmade using vintage bits by Lilygrace Originals.

Another simple outfit  – I definitely need more colour  next week.

Apart from doing the  challenge this week I have also managed to get some goodies from a quick dash into a charity shop in Bath (inc the scarf I am wearing above). Too bad I won’t get to wear the green lace dress and angorra jumper yet.

I also went to London for the fabulous ‘How to be an Eco Warrioress’ event organised by Bi.itch Online. I will be blogging about it more on www.ethicalfashionbloggers.com.

I hope you are having a good start to the week. What have you been up to lately?

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

 

Recycled Sandals – Brazilian Beach and Urban Style

recycled sandals

Brazilian Ethical Sandals

recycled sandals

I just wanted to share with you another fantastic ethical brand that I have come across. Marlandia is the exclusive U.S. online distributor for Retalhos Cariocas, a progressive Brazilian fashion house that transforms flip-flops with recycled and sourced
fabrics into sandals with a vibrant mix of Brazilian beach and urban style. They are now shipping worldwide!

Founder Silvinha Oliveira was born into the Barreira do Vasco slum, far from the beaches of Ipanema. With extraordinary determination, she worked her way through fashion school, returned home and created Retalhos Cariocas, which translates to “Rio Scraps.” Her vision is to empower local women by teaching them sewing skills and offering fair wages. She explains, “People from the favela… There’s a destiny of being poor, not being able to go to university, or get a good job. We’re fighting to destroy the mentality that a person from the favela doesn’t have the right to be someone.”

Today, the women of Retalhos Cariocas are fighting their way out of Brazil’s slums and creating economic opportunities to lift their community out of poverty. Through their use of fair trade labor and sustainable materials, Retalhos Cariocas has gained worldwide acclaim for empowering local women from Brazil’s slums, as featured in Cosmo India, Look Magazine U.K., Origin Magazine, and Forbes Magazine Blog as well as Rio Fashion Week.

The story behind these sandals is pretty amazing, you can see more in the video below but what I really love with this sandals is that they look amazing and really unusual. As you can see from the video, it is not just about fair trade, the design is also of huge importance.

I hope that you are having a lovely weekend. Please don’t forget if you have not already entered, my outfit competition ends today. I am enjoying my last day of freedom (in terms of what I wear) before I start on the Labour Behind the Label 6 Items Challenge. I will post more about this tommorrow but if you would like to read about it, you can do so here.

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

 

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Fashion Blogger’s Ethical Outfit Competition – Over £250 of Prizes to be Won

ethical outfit comp June- Style Eyes Ethical Fashion Blog

Following on from the success of the last 2 Ethical outfit competitions, I have decided to make these competitions a regular event. It is fantastic to see how bloggers are wearing ethical and sustainable fashion and I hope that these outfits will inspire others to give ethical/ sustainable fashion a try too. The competition is open to any UK fashion blogger, your outfit just needs to include at least one ethical or sustainable item which include anything organic, made from sustainable fabrics, fair trade, vintage, recycled or second hand. you can find out more on how to enter below, but first I wanted to tell you about the fantastic prizes!

The Prizes

£100 of Spartoo Vouchers

Pikolinos Sandals

Spartoo are an online shoe retailer with a fantastic selection of ethical and sustainable shoes. The vouchers can be spent on men’s, women’s or children’s shoes from a wide range of brands including my favourites Dream in Green, Melissa and Pikolinos.

Organic Cotton Yoga Pants and Tencel Vest by From Clothing

From Clothing

This outfit by From Clothing consists of loose fit, 3/4 length Capri leggings made in a scrumptious soft organic cotton and a beautiful, feminine strappy vest made from 95% sustainable Lenzing Tencel. It is perfect for Yoga, Pilates or simple, relaxed everyday wear! From Clothing is a new Ethical Fashion Brand based in Devon designing clothes inspired by the big outdoors and made using ethically sourced, organic and sustainable
materials. Their clothes are stylish, flattering and on trend whilst promoting the
‘real shaped’ woman.

A Calypso Skirt from Bibico

Bibico calypso skirt

Take your pick of a Calypso skirt in you choice of white, grey or a pretty print. (subject to availability). Bibico is an ethical fashion brand which combines contemporary styling with traditional skills including hand weaving, embroidery and knitting to create beautifully simple and charming clothing. All of their clothes are made from quality natural materials and produced in fair trade cooperatives.

£50 to spend at Grassroots Fashion

Grassroots Fashion

Break free from the high street with GrassrootsGrassroots provides unique, fashionable and affordable, upcycled clothing. Each garment is individually re-designed and upcycled to reflect the current fashion trends so you can wear the season’s must have styles without it costing the earth.

If you would like to enter, all you have to do is post a picture of you wearing your ethical outfit on your blog with a link to www.ethicalfashionblog.com and mention which aspect of your outfit is ethical. Then follow me on Twitter (@StyleEyes) and tweet me the link with the following:-

’I’m rocking #ethicalfashion for the @StyleEyes Blogger’s Outfit Competition’

Before the end of 30th June.

I will choose winners from 1st to 4th place based on how stylish, creative and ethical their outfits are, on 2nd July. The first prize winner will get to choose their prize first, the second next and so on. All outfits enetered in the competition will also be published here on Style Eyes Ethical Fashion Blog with a link to the relevant blog.

I can’t wait to see your outfits! If you want a bit of inspiration, check out the amazing outfits from my last competitions in November 2011 and March this year.

For those that have an interest in Ethical Fashion, you may be interested in joining a new group that I have just set up www.ethicalfashionbloggers.com. You don’t only have to just blog about ethical fashion, it is for anyone that is interested in networking with other bloggers, working with ethical brands, joining in ethical outfit challenges, DIY and post round ups and coming along to meet ups. We also love vintage, charity shopping and DIY.

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

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Patagonia Shoes – Performance and Comfort to the Max

When you think of the companies that have been the real pioneers of sustainability in the clothing industry, Patagonia is most definitely one that springs to mind. Whilst they are perhaps more about function than fashion, their clothes are just right for looking the part when out and about in the great outdoors even in an urban area and I always think you need to be comfortable to look stylish!

The brand founder Yvon Chouinard is a lover of the outdoors and of nature and the company has a strong philosophy of respect for the environment which encompasses everything that it does from the creation of new fabrics including recycled polyester and their common threads recycling iniative to its involvement in environmental projects and campaigns around the world. It still manages to make great looking clothes that perform to the max.

Patagonia is a company that really does walk the walk when it comes to sustainability making a huge commitment to the environment by donating 1% of all sales to grassroots environmental groups. They also have an environmental internship scheme where employees can leave their jobs for up to one month to work for the environmental group of their choice. Patagonia continues to pay their salaries and benefits while they’re gone, and environmental groups worldwide get them for free.

I am particularly taken by the range of Patagonia shoes stocked in the UK by Spartoo.co.uk which are ideal for those who like to combine comfort and style and demand a lot from their footwear from the flip flops which are ideal for beach holidays and watersports to the trail shoes for those who love to run.

Patagonia Ballerina pumps

Maha Breathe coral shoes

Patagonia flip flops

 Banda Thong Flip flop

Banda Sling Sandal

Banda Criss Cross

Fore Runner Trail Shoes

What do you think of these? Do you need comfy shoes for an active life?

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

Ethical Fashion Brands in ASOS Green Rooms

I have, in the past, been a little critical of the ASOS Green Room for the fact that many of the clothes featured in it would not really be what I would consider ethical and they provided very little information on the ethics of the brands and clothes that they sold. I am pleased to say much of that has now changed and ASOS Green Room now contains quite a comprehensive collection of ethical brands as well as some of their own label clothes including the fabulous ASOS Africa Collection which has been produced by working with SOKO, a clothing production workshop for the export market that aims to create sustainable, fair employment and offer training and skills to some of the most impoverished communities in Kenya.

It also has a bit  of information about each of the designers/ labels that it sells. I would however suggest that if you are unsure of whether a label fits with your ethics you look for further information on the brands own website.

I wanted to share some of the ethical brands and collections that are stocked in ASOS Green Rooms and have caught my eye.

ASOS Crochet Village

ASOS Crochet Village

I love crochet and I love the way this dress incorporates it into a fresh and modern style of dress ! Crochet Village is part of ASOS collection and includes dresses, skirts and tops that fit perfectly with the other exciting and directional pieces in the collection. The collection is made in Bangladeshi village of Chonpara, it enables underprivileged communities to establish sustainable business through their local artisan craftsmanship.

Heti’s Colours

Hetis Colours

Heti’s Colours is the label of Heti Gervis, a colour forecaster and textile designer who has worked with the likes of Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs and Calvin Klein. The collection is inspired by the softness and depth of colour created by hand-dyeing. The collection consists of tonal jersey pieces which are perfect for layering and colour blocking hand dyed in a community near Jaipur, India.

Choolips

Choolips

Choolips combines ancient textile traditions with fun colourful prints and pretty dresses. The dresses featuring modern Batik prints on pure cotton made entirely in Ghana with both ethical and sustainable practices. Theses dresses are so perfect for summer!

TOMS

TOMS shoes

I have seen TOMS featured on quite a few fashion blogs recently and really love them for their simple laid back style, multiple choices of colour/ fabric and that they match every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes given to a
child in need.

What do you think? have you visited the Green Rooms at ASOS recently?

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

 

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Veja Ethical Shoes and the Observer Ethical Awards

Veja Shoes

Veja shoes

 

Ethical shoes by Veja

As a teenager, I spent a lot of time sailing pretty much lived in my deck shoes both onland and off land. They were super comfy and easy to wear but were never quite as colourful as these fantastic ones by ethical shoe brand Veja. The summer collection is called Mediterranee and is made from two tone organic cotton with vulcanized wild rubber soles.

Veja also have some fantastic trainers sneaker (or daps as they call them here in the West Country), with a fantastic retro style inspired by running tennis and Volley ball shoes.

Veja Ethical trainers

Veja ethical shoes

Veja ethical sneakers

Veja white trainers

The brand has a vision simple vision where another world is possible. They are inventing new ways to work that use ecologically friendly materials including organic and Fairtrade cotton from North East Brazil, vegetable tanned leathers and natural latex and a global chain which respects workers diginity. The brand also minimises its environmental impact and carbon emmissions at many levelsi ncluding energy use, transportation and packaging but they openly and honestly admit there limitations which include that the pigments used for dying leather, rubber and cotton, are not made from natural products. By reading the brands website you can begin to understand the huge challenges which face ethical shoe and fashion brands but it is great to see that Veja are taking postive steps in working towards their companies vision.

And here is the bit that is really interesting! Veja does not advertise. The resources saved are integrated into the production chain. This means the farmers and producers Veja works with are fairly remunerated – to accomodate their social and environmental requirements.

Veja have been shortlisted for Observer Ethical Awards in the Fashion and accessories category which is sponsored by Vogue. They have some really tough competition in this categroy with Ada Zandition and Bottle Top, both of which create pieces that are desirable beyond just their ethics (as is Veja). The winners will be announced at a ceremony on 30th May. Would Veja get your vote?

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

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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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Birthday Week

Apart from the fact that it marks me getting another year older, I really love birthdays. I don’t have much time to myself most of the time so on my birthday like to indulge myself. This year I have managed to spread it out over a whole week of doing pretty much exactly what I want. I had some lovely pressies including delicious smelling Lush goodies from my sister, a beautiful mirrored jewellery box and a necklace from my neighbours and a vintage book from my friend but mostly I got money which I  have used to treat myself to a few goodies (clothes of course!).

paisley scarf

Monsoon Ramirez Dress

On Monday, I spent a very wet day wandering around the shops and researching my Vintage and Second Hand Guide to Bath, I did also manage to squeeze in some shopping and got this beautiful scarf from the Black and White Shop for just £10. I also got this amazing printed dress from Monsoon and a Monsoon cardigan from the Oxfam Boutique. I can’t wait until the weather warms up so I can wear the dress perhaps with the scarf for a really printastic outfit!

My actual birthday was really all about eating cake. I ordered up this beauty from Patisserie Valerie, it was delicious- sponge, cream, fruit and white chocolate.  I did manage to fit in 2 hours of excercise classes which hopefully went some way to offsetting some of those calories.

Noorin Khamisani Outsider

On Thursday, I had a cup of tea and chat with the lovely Noorin Khamisani of Outsider, a fantastic label that is all about classic, wearable and beautiful clothes (that just happen to be ethical too) . I really love her latest collection which features some very lovely dresses, one of which she happens to be wearing in this photo.

Antiform top

It was yet another horrible and wet day so I resorted to wearing jeans (organic cotton from M&S) and boots (Dream in Green) with my new Antiform top that I got from Mr Style Eyes and the girls. I did give them a little help in deciding what to get me. Well actually I just bought it ,myself from Think Boutique. Antiform is another label which I really love and well worth checking out if you love unusual pieces. They use reclaimed fabrics and mix fashion forward shapes with heritage crafts.

zakee shariff paisley t shirt

I also got this People Tree top from the Zakee Shariff Collection.

And this dress by Frank and Faith (another amazing and very afforable brand) from Ethical Superstore which I wore out to dinner with my friends on Friday with leggings and necklace by People Tree, swapped denim jacket and shoes by Simple.

I have also ordered myself a few more goodies in the Ethical Superstore 20% off sale and some Melissa shoes (to keep my feet dry) which I will share once they arrive.

So that is it birthday week is over, back to reality, sensible, healthy eating and a complete shopping ban until at least the autumn, I definitely don’t need any new clothes now.

I hope you have had a lovely weekend, despite the rain!

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

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