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

This post contains some affiliate links

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Pikolinos – Ethical Sandals

I have mentioned in the past that Spartoo has one of the best selections of ethical sandals and shoes around including some fantastic brands like Melissa and Dream in Green. Today I wanted to share with you a Spanish ethical shoe brand Pikolinos.

I have a pair of Pikolinos shoes and they are fantastic quality, really well made with lots of attention to detail and also incredibly comfy. They are the sort of shoes that I really treasure and enjoy wearing.  The brand concentrates creating on natural shoes made by artisans with respect for the environment. The leathers used to make their shoes are vegetable tanned and are chromium free.

For spring summer, they have some really beautiful beaded and cut out sandals which would be perfect for wearing with boho, ethnic and festival fashion type of outfits!

Pikolinos sandals formentera

Sandals – Formentera

 Pikolinos sandals

Formentera Dust Black Sandals

 Ethical sandals

Moriara Black Sandals

Alcudia Lola sandals

Alcudia Lola Sandals

I would wear  these ethical sandals with all sorts of outfits from casual dresses to maxi skirts and jeans for summer. Now all we need is a bit of sunshine.

With warmest wishes

Ceri x

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Candy Coloured Shoes From Dream In Green

I just wanted to share the lastest collection of shoes from ethical shoe brand Dream in Green. If you read this blog regularly you will probably have seen that I have posted about them quite a bit in the past. I have a fantastic pair of ankle boots from the brand which feature in loads of my outfits. I love that they are so wearable and comfy, I can easily wear them for walking the girls to school and yet they still look really on trend.

For spring and summer, they have an amazing collection of wedge heel sandals, ballet flats and boots in delicious candy shades as well as some more neutral coloured pairs that will go with just about everything.

Dream in green ethical shoes

Tahiti

Dream in green ethical shoes

Cook

ethical summer boots

Anapurna

eco boots for summer

Makalup

Eco sandals

Delos

Dream in Green Ethical sandalsHadas

I think my favourites are the turquoise Anapurna boots. Which do you like best?

Keep your eyes out for my ethical outfit competition next week where you will have the chance to win £100 of vouchers for Spartoo to spend on Dream in Green shoes (or any other shoes / handbags of your choice from the site).

I hope you are having a good week!

With warmest wishes

Ceri

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Sustainable Shoes for Spring and Summer

I am pretty sure that spring will be on its way soon and we will be able to pack away winter boots for a few seasons in favour of lighter and more strappy footwear (I am ever hopeful!). I have in the past mentioned that Spartoo has a fantastic section for green or sustainable shoes. The most exciting thing is, that at the moment almost all of the shoes are on sale or offer.  Here are just a few of my favourites:

Feel like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz with these classic court shoes by my favourite eco shoe brand, Dream in Green. They are so perfect for wearing with retro style and vintage dresses and skirts.

These leather sandals are by Greenfit are made from all natural materials with wooden soles. They are high quality shoes made in modern styles using traditional techniques.

If you are looking for something a little quirky and different, the eco shoe brand Think has a good selection. I love the colours and shape of this pair. They are made from 100% natural materials including vegetable tanned leather.

 For comfy and casual shoes for spring and summer, Simple shoes are fantastic. They have a range of different styles but these are my faves.

What do you think? would you consider buying eco/ sustainable shoes? Do you like any of these?

With warmest wishes

Ceri X

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Tuesday Treats – Ethical Shoes in the Sales

I am always complaining how affordable ethical shoes are difficult to find. But lately I have changed my mind on that one. Spartoo has an amazing collection of ethical shoes and they also have some amazing bargains in the sales. Here are just a few of my favourites which are made from naturally tanned leather or other recyclable or natural and biodegradable materials.

First up are these amazing shoes by Dream in Green, they are made using vegetable tanned leather. I actually have these shoes and wear them loads, you can see them in this outfit post. They have just the right amount of heel to give me some height and make my legs look longer but also be comfortable to walk in. They are reduced from £184 to £87! There are also plenty of other beautiful Dream in Green shoes in the sale.

If you are in need of a lady like pair of shoes to go with vintage style dresses for spring, these court shoes by Terra Plana are great. The black and white combo goes with any colour and they are also super comfy. They are made from recycled materials including leather. Reduced from £111 to £78.

 

These fabulous brogues are from the Alexandre Herchovitch collection for Melissa, they are made from sweet smelling plastic which is recyclable. They are reduced to just £51 in the sale. There are also plenty of other Melissa shoes in the Sale.

These boots by Think are a classic style that will never go out of fashion, they can be worn all winter long. They are made from chromium free vegetable tanned leather.

That’s all for today. I hope that you are having a fantastic week!

With warmest wishes

Ceri

30 Days of Ethical Fashion – Ethletic Shoes

Baseball boots are a classic piece of casual clothing. The perfect comfortable choice of footwear which look great with so many different outfits from jeans to dresses.

Ethletic trainers are made by Fair Corp a company that makes sports and fashion products whilst putting people and the planet first. The shoes and boots are made from Fairtrade and organic cotton and Fairtrade rubber. By purchasing organic cotton Ethletic trainers you can help farmers in India to improve life for themselves and their families. Other Fair Corp projects and factories help those in Pakistan. The Fairtrade schemes have a variety of benefits including safe drinking water schemes, eye clinics and education.

Ethlectic trainers are available in a variety of colours in both hi top and low top styles. You can find out more about Ethletic Trainers from www.thefaircorp.com. They are also stocked at Fashion Conscience.

Check out the rest of my 30 Days of Ethical Fashion series here.

With warmest wishes

Ceri X

30 Days of Ethical Fashion – Po-Zu Shoes

I have never been really fond of Ugg Boots for how they look. On the really cold days in the winter, I will have to admit that they keep your feet toasty warm but I prefer to try and look a little different than the same as everyone else. That is where Po-Zu come in. They have a range of warm and extremely comfortable boots for winter that will set you apart from the crowd in terms of style.

I have the Piper check boots and I love wearing them on those cold icy mornings to brighten up my outfit which almost always consists of a black winter coat. They also look great with a thick pair of coloured tights.

As an added bonus Po-Zu boots are great for the environment. They are made from a range of natural and sustainable materials including hemp, wool, cork, coconut husk and natural rubber. Many of the styles are also suitable for vegans. When you have finished with them, you can bury them in the ground and they will completely biodegrade. They are stitched together instead of using glue and are made in an ethical factory in Portugal.

I also couldn’t tell you about Po-Zu shoes with mentioning their amazing coconut husk foot bed. Each shoe or boot has a unique sole (or foot bed) which moulds to the shape of your foot. The website describes them as being like ‘walking on clouds’ and I have to say, they are probably the comfiest shoes that I own.

Po-Zu have also had some interesting collaborations with Timberland, Amazon Life and Maharishi.

Check out the full 30 Days of Ethical Fashion Series here.

With warmest wishes

Ceri X

Sustainable Fashion Review – Simple Shoes

I don’t often do product reviews anymore, partly because I already have lots of clothes and also because many of the items that I am offered aren’t sustainable fashion. But when Nature Shop contacted me to see if I would like to review a pair of shoes from their website, I jumped at the chance.

Whilst I have plenty of high heels, I always struggle to find the right pair of flat shoes to wear with an outfit. The pair of ballet flats that I bought last year are almost worn through and a comfy pair of black shoes is always handy. The Simple shoes on the Nature Shop website ticked all of the boxes being comfy but not frumpy, stylish, versatile, sustainable and ethical. I chose a pair of boater shoes in black.

In the above outfit picture I chose to show them off with a move learnt at my body combat class (makes a change from the usual hand on hip, no?) and by wearing with a nautically striped top from a charity shop and M&S Fairtrade jeans .

They are neat and looked great with a range of outfits from skirts and dresses with tights, to jeans. They also have an interesting egg box like insole which is amazingly comfy and in contrast to my thin ballet pumps, also really insulating. My feet were really warm, even when wearing them without socks.  I love the cute grosgrain ribbon stitching and detail. The soles are a colourful purple and are non slip, I may even wear them if I go sailing next summer.

In case you are interested in sustainable fashion, there is plenty of information on the box about the materials that have been used to make the shoes. They are made from eco certified leather with organic cotton lining and recycled PET laces. The soles are made from 30% recycled car tyres and 70% natural rubber and the insole from recycled paper.

Here are some of the other styles of Simple Shoes that are available at Nature Shoes:

If you like the look of these Simple Shoes, don’t forget to enter my ethical outfit competition for the chance to win a pair and lots of other great prizes. Have a fab weekend.

With warmest wishes

Ceri