Monday, 22 June 2015

We Are Cow: Recycled, Redesigned and Remade

Apologies for the lack of posts over the last week; work has been incredibly busy recently which has meant a lot of exciting travel but unfortunately not a lot of time off, let alone time to write some interesting and thought-provoking blog posts! After being away Monday-Friday in Germany and the Netherlands, I spent the weekend relaxing at home in Derbyshire, which was a lovely break away from the bright lights and break-neck speed of London. It's amazing what a few fields and some fresh air can do! Aside from enjoying the greenery, I also managed to fit in a visit to Nottingham with my boyfriend on Saturday, which was a fantastic real-life example of how the repair/remake/recycle movement is slowly infiltrating the British high street (see my post on the vintage 90s denim trend here).

As a lively student city, Nottingham boasts an incredible range of high street retailers as well as small independent boutiques, vintage stores and charity shops, which all add to the individual vibe of the city and reflect the unique style of its young shoppers, who are just as likely to be seen in a customised or remade second-hand item than the latest top-to-toe look from Topshop or Zara. Walking around the city centre, I was struck by just how many shops were selling organic, vintage, remade or repaired products - Lush's natural beauty productsLevi's Tailor Shop repair service and Cow to name just a few - and I really hope that this focus on provenance and sustainability is a movement that is starting to spread to all retailers, rather than just another passing trend. 

Cow is "an affordable vintage clothing and accessories retailer, selling handpicked items that are sourced from around the world", which challenges the traditional retail model by "closing the loop" on clothing production, by redesigning and remaking existing items into new and exciting shapes and styles. In addition to selling a selection of vintage clothing and accessories (think college sweaters, 90s print dresses and New Balance trainers), the women's range at Cow also includes a fantastic selection of re-purposed Ralph Lauren shirts, which have been given a new lease of life as clean shirt dresses, cute co-ord sets and minimal crop tops, with prices starting from around £18. Not bad considering the quality of the original item, and the time that has gone into resewing it to create something on trend as well as ethical and sustainable.

A selection of vintage shoes and bags

The menswear display on the ground floor
You can check out Cow's website here and read more about their story on their blog. If you can't get to Nottingham, they also have shops in Birmingham, Manchester and Sheffield, and ship their products internationally for those not based in the UK.

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All pictures taken from Cow's blog - find them on Twitter and Instagram.


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