Wednesday, 28 December 2016

My Slow Fashion Heroes of 2016

Looking back on this year, it's safe to say that 2016 will probably go down in history for all the wrong reasons. But however disappointed or sad you might be feeling about the events of the last 12 months, remember that there has also been a lot of positive progress towards a fairer, healthier and more environmentally-friendly world, and some big steps forward in slow fashion, led by a special group of #girlbosses who are all contributing to the cause in their own special way. Read on for my list of Slow Fashion Heroes for 2016!

Monday, 19 December 2016

7 Last-Minute Christmas Gift Ideas

Christmas is almost here! But if you still haven't bought your presents, don't worry - instead on spending money on things that no-one needs, why not try out these quick, ethical and eco-friendly gift ideas that won't break the bank.

Sunday, 11 December 2016

Book Review: The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees

Following the success of Marie Kondo's "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" and the trend for all things chic, minimal and Scandinavian, comes the first book from personal style writer Anuschka Rees of the popular blog INTO-MIND, whose tips and tricks for building a simpler and more streamlined wardrobe have now been compiled into one easy-to-read guide. I've been meaning to review "The Curated Closet: A Simple System for Discovering Your Personal Style and Building Your Dream Wardrobe" since its launch in September, and with 2017 fast approaching (where has the year gone?!), now seems like the perfect time to be promoting a more conscious, considered approach to shopping into the New Year.

Sunday, 30 October 2016

Check Out My Top 5 Denim DIYs

Great news for slow fashion fans - upcycled denim is quickly becoming the fashion industry's new hot topic, seen in the success of cult designer brand Vetements' deconstructed jeans and Cheap Monday's new C/O capsule collection, which is re-fashioned out of pre-existing garments. As denim is one of the most water-intensive fabrics to produce, upcycling items you already own into something new is one of the most sustainable ways of updating your wardrobe, as well as being creative and budget friendly. Check out my favourite denim DIYs below, from three bloggers who've made upcycling into a successful career, with over 750K Instagram followers between them.


Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Book Review: Thrive by Kamea Chayne

Exploring how to live a more conscious lifestyle is a bit like falling down the rabbit hole – whether you first get hooked on green beauty, slow fashion or zero waste, there’s so much more to learn and discover that it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the abundance of information at your fingertips. Enter Kamea Chayne’s Thrive, an “environmentally conscious lifestyle guide to better health and true wealth” – better described as a whistle-stop tour of everything you need to know about making more mindful choices in only 234 pages.

Saturday, 24 September 2016

My Top 3 Must-Reads This Autumn

Summer is officially over, but it's not all doom and gloom - now that the first leaves are starting to turn brown and there's a chill in the air, what perfect way to settle in to the new season than with a cup of hot chocolate/tea/coffee and a good book? Here are my top three must-reads for the coming months - a great way to wind down of an evening and get inspired by the latest in sustainable fashion and conscious living.

Saturday, 10 September 2016

Review: Bread & Butter Presents the Future of Fashion

Image via Jolie Janine
One of the best bits of working in retail is going to trade fairs and discovering what's coming up next - under the radar brands, new fashion trends and changing consumer behaviour, which all comes together to form a preview of what the fashion industry will look like in the future. So last Friday, I was very excited to be able to attend the newly revamped Bread & Butter - originally a trade show for buyers and industry professionals, but now transformed into a "trend show for everyone", complete with sneak peaks of upcoming collections and various interactive experiences.

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

5 Easy and Ethical Ways to Clear Your Clutter, in Collaboration with Oxfam

I'm a firm believer that a tidy home leads to a tidy mind, and it seems I'm not alone, given the runaway success of Japanese de-cluttering guru Marie Kondo's guidebooks and the minimalistic Scandi aesthetic currently dominating my Pinterest feed. However, simply throwing out your unwanted possessions isn't the solution - chances are it'll just get end up in landfill. So what's the best way to de-clutter easily and ethically? Check out my top 5 tips below.

Thursday, 18 August 2016

1 Hour DIY: Culottes

Culottes have been on the fashion map ever since Victoria Beckham wore them to end her Spring/Summer '14 show back in New York in 2013, but it wasn't until this year that the trend really seemed to kick off, reflecting the current mood for relaxed tailoring and easy-going silhouettes. I wasn't keen initially, but inspired by street style and my classic white Vejas, I thought I'd give it a try the ethical fashion way - with an old pair of trousers and a spare 60 minutes! This is a really easy DIY to try at home that works to shorten any kind of trousers, plus you don't even need to use a sewing machine if you're a beginner.

Sunday, 7 August 2016

Eco Sessions in Berlin: My Main Takeaways

Last month I attended the Berlin edition of Eco Sessions, a series of panel discussions set up by Magnifeco founder Kate Black, which explores all topics relevant to ethical fashion and sustainability. I'd spotted the the event on social media a couple of days before and thought it sounded interesting, so I dragged my boyfriend along to upcycling and alternation store Bis es mir vom Leibe fällt (literally, "until it falls off my body") in the beautiful but relatively expensive district of Schöneberg.

Sunday, 24 July 2016

DIY: Off Shoulder Update

Off shoulder tops have been having a real moment this summer, and for good reason - they can be styled up or down, work well with both skirts and jeans, and of course are one of the easiest things to upcycle yourself from an old shirt. I've been wearing my 1-hour DIY off shoulder top for months, but after being inspired by the beautiful (and ethical) styles from LA-based brand Reformation I decided to upgrade the original and add a couple of design twists. 

Friday, 8 July 2016

Review: The Ethical Fashion Show Berlin, July 2016

Last week the international fashion press descended on Berlin for Mercedes Benz Fashion Week, and as the capital of sustainable fashion, the event wouldn't have been complete without the Ethical Fashion Show and the Green Showroom, which this year celebrated their 10th anniversary. I feel very lucky to be back living in this incredible city, which is absolutely buzzing with both new emerging talent and established labels with one aim in mind - to make the fashion system work better by producing beautiful clothes that put people and planet first. 

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Oxfam Fashion Blog: 5 Reasons You Should Choose a Vintage Wedding Dress

Photo credit: Benjamin Tietge/Oxfam
Wedding season is here again, and if you've been following Oxfam on Twitter recently you might have been inspired by their beautiful series of posts featuring brides in pre-loved Oxfam wedding dresses. So for all the future brides-to-be who haven't found the perfect gown yet, here's five reasons why you should consider a choosing vintage, as well as helping others benefit from your special day.

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

New Stylish and Sustainable Parisian Label Les Sublimes

I always love discovering new ethical fashion brands, and so I was really excited to hear from sustainable Parisian brand Les Sublimes, who are launching their first collection today on crowdfunding site Indiegogo. Offering beautiful wardrobe essentials that are also affordable, luxurious and responsibly-made, the capsule collection is comprised of 6 styles each inspired by different cities, made from Lenzing Modal® and certified organic cotton in a small family-run atelier.

Saturday, 11 June 2016

1-Hour DIY Off-The-Shoulder Top

Off-the-shoulder tops are everywhere this season, but if you're looking for a way to buy into the trend without buying something new, why not 'shop' your own wardrobe instead? If you've got an old, oversized shirt lying around (top tip - check out your boyfriend's collection) then with a bit of DIY know-how and only 60 minutes you could turn that unworn and unloved item into your new favourite wardrobe staple.

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Summer Hero Pieces From Everlane

Everlane is a fashion startup with a difference - the company's tagline is "Radical Transparency", and this extends right through from the factories it produces in to a detailed breakdown of the the true costs involved in making each product. Plus there's more good news for customers outside of the US - international shipping is available until June 5th for a flat fee of $25!

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Instagram-Inspired DIY Photo Wall

Now that all the basics are sorted in our new apartment, it's finally time for me to move on to the nice part - decorating! I'm really excited to share one of the projects I've been working on recently - this super quick, cheap and easy DIY photo wall that's the perfect way to save and share all of your memories.

Thursday, 12 May 2016

New Oxfam Post: Throw Your Own Summer Swap Party, Inspired by Fashion Revolution

Fashion Revolution's swap party at the 25h Bikini Hotel Berlin

Summer is almost here, and it’s the time of year when you're bombarded from every angle with the latest seasonal ‘must haves’. But here’s the trick – unless the weather plays along, you’ll probably only be able to wear your new purchases for a few weeks before the weather starts to turn again and the first drops of the Autumn/Winter collections start trickling into stores – meaning an even fuller wardrobe and no money for those big winter investment pieces! So what’s the solution? Why not throw your own summer swap party, inspired by Fashion Revolution? Hop over to Oxfam UK's Fashion Blog for more info, or read on for the full post. 

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Slow Fashion and Sustainability News: March/April Edition

Whilst time has been scarce since moving into our new apartment (read my tips for a greener home here), now that summer is just around the corner I'm back into the swing of things and excited to see what the next big developments in sustainable fashion will be! The last couple of months have been really important for raising awareness of key issues - from H&M's World Recycle Week through to Fashion Revolution and some beautiful Green Carpet Challenge gowns at this year's Met Gala - read on for my summary, plus more highlights from the blog and other interesting articles.

Saturday, 23 April 2016

Fashion Revolution Day - What's on in Berlin

Sunday 24th April is Fashion Revolution Day - the day that we remember the 1,134 victims of the 2013 Rana Plaza disaster, and call on all brands for more transparency and better workers'  rights through the hashtag #whomademyclothes. This worldwide event is gathering pace every year, with thousands of people challenging brands and taking part in discussions about the future of fashion. If you haven't so far, tweet your favourite brand to ask #whomademyclothes, and if you're about in Berlin check out my list below to see what ethical events are happening this weekend. See you there!

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Sustainable Tips for Your New Home

Moving into a new apartment is incredibly exciting, but for those interested in living a more conscious lifestyle it can mean a whole new set of stresses, especially if it involves furnishing your new home from scratch! Over the last few weeks I've felt really guilty for buying a lot of new things, but ultimately I've had to keep telling myself that living a more sustainable life is a balance, and every smaller choice contributes to bigger change. Read on for my top tips for a more sustainable new home!

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Quick DIY: How to Repair Jeans

Repairing your existing clothing is one of the easiest and best ways to practice slow fashion, because you're not consuming any new resources or creating extra waste. Denim is a great example of a hardwearing material that can be repaired many times over, so much so that many classic jeans brands such as Levi's, Nudie Jeans, Denham and G-Star are now offering recycled styles or repair services to help make your favourite pair last even longer. However, you can just as easily repair them yourself with a scrap of fabric, needle and thread and a spare 15 minutes - read on for an easy how-to guide!


Saturday, 26 March 2016

Review: The Green Market Berlin

Happy Easter! It's a beautiful weekend here, and one that I'll be spending mostly with my boyfriend in between seeing family and friends, as we get ready to finally move into our new apartment. I can't wait to show off the results of all our hard work soon, but first I wanted to share the fun I had at last Sunday's Green Market Berlin, a "vegan lifestyle market" set right in the middle of the RAW Gelände, a repurposed industrial estate which is now full of clubs, bars, and even a swimming pool!

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Oxfam DIY: Sleeveless Springtime Blazer

It's official - sleeveless blazers are everywhere this season! They're the perfect transitional piece to take you from cold, dark days of winter into the decidedly more fashion-friendly spring, layered with either a cosy jumper and pencil skirt or a silk shirt and jeans. This is one of the quickest and easiest DIYs to turn a sad old blazer into the latest SS16 trend - and all you need is a spare hour with a needle and thread. Check out what's on offer in the Oxfam online shop, including this amazing M&S jacket, or read on for the tutorial.

Saturday, 12 March 2016

Second Hand Style #3: My Best Berlin Bargains So Far

If you've been following my second hand shopping series from my new home in Berlin, you might have seen that I that I spent some time last month exploring my temporary new neighbourhood of Charlottenburg, where I discovered a brilliant mix of charity shops and upmarket second hand boutiques only a ten minute walk from my apartment. It's testament to the stylish and discerning tastes of the owners that the shops were full of customers, and I ended up buying something in almost every store!

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Slow Fashion and Sustainability News: February Edition

With consumer fatigue causing chaos across the global fashion industry, leaving some brands and retailers mistakenly putting their faith in the increasingly unstable and unsustainable fast fashion system, it seems that the time has come to start treating our clothing with a little more care and attention. There was a lot of love for sustainable fashion throughout February, from inspirational Valentine's gift guides by all the best ethical fashion bloggers to the launch of Livia Firth's new capsule collection for M&S, and an even bigger turnout for her Green Carpet Challenge at this year's Oscars, which was topped off by Leo's brilliant speech on climate change.


Sunday, 21 February 2016

REVIEW: Sustainable Fashion at Modefabriek and MINT

Working in fashion definitely has its perks, and one of those was a few weeks ago when I attended Modefabriek, Amsterdam's premiere trade show with four fashion 'districts'  and over 600 brands. But Modefabriek (literally, "fashion factory") isn't just a key player in terms of size - it's also at the forefront of sustainable fashion, with dedicated trade show MINT giving eco-friendly, conscious brands a brilliant platform to present their products to potential buyers and promote the fashion of the future.

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Ethical Valentine's Gift Guide

If you're looking  to treat yourself or someone special this Valentine's Day, why not spread the love a little bit further with a present that gives back? These days it's easy to find beautiful, sustainable and ethically made products that beat the usual supermarket box of chocolates hands down - here's my pick of the best from companies with a conscience.

Monday, 8 February 2016

Oxfam Fashion DIY: Upcycled Apron

Spring is just around the corner, and one of my favourite customs around this time of year is Pancake Day (or Shrove Tuesday), which traditionally is all about using up leftover ingredients in preparation for Lent. But why not extend this philosophy to your wardrobe and see what can be re-used, repaired or up cycled into other items, like these brilliant DIY aprons made from old shirts and tea towels? Check out the Oxfam Fashion blog or read on for more details of how to make your own, and search the online shop for more second hand bargains.

Friday, 5 February 2016

Second Hand Shopping in Berlin #2: Charlottenburg

For part 2 of my second hand shopping guide to Berlin, we're moving west to the leafy suburb of Charlottenburg - former centre of West Berlin after the war, home to Charlottenburg palace, and my current temporary neighbourhood. This district has a completely different vibe to hipster Kreuzberg (which you can read all about in Part 1), so don't expect to pay per kilo here - instead, enjoy the grand townhouses and sophisticated streets, full of second hand "boutiques" with well-chosen selections of quality items.

Sunday, 31 January 2016

Slow Fashion and Sustainability News: January Edition

It's only been a few weeks since we said goodbye to 2015 and welcomed in the start of a fresh new year, but as January draws to a close it's the perfect time to review (or re-do!) your New Year's resolutions and prepare for the coming season. This month was a busy one for the fashion industry, as designers around the world showed off their new collections during fashion week, retail giants IKEA and C&A announced positive developments in cotton sourcing, Adidas and H&M came out on top in two different global sustainability rankings, and THE GREEN SCENE made its debut on Oxfam's Fashion Blog!

Friday, 29 January 2016

REVIEW: The Ethical Fashion Show January 2016

As you might have spotted recently from my Twitter and Instagram, last week I attended the January edition of the Ethical Fashion Show, a bi-annual event taking place during Berlin Fashion Week with over 160 eco-friendly and sustainable fashion brands from 19 countries. I was really looking forward to seeing what had changed since the last time I visited the show in July 2015, and I wasn't disappointed - there were even more brands, a bigger exhibition space, and what felt like a much greater emphasis on style and aesthetics, with the designers focusing on their place in the fashion world just as much as on ethical and sustainable production.

Monday, 25 January 2016

Oxfam Fashion SS16 Update: The New White Shirt

From left: DIY by A Pair and a Spare, street style on The Style HQ and a twist on the classic at Nasty Gal
Whilst the start of 2016 may have been a bit cold and depressing (it’s no fun being stone-cold sober in -9C…thanks, Dry January), it’s now time to start getting excited about the new season and re-discovering your favourite Spring pieces, such as the classic white shirt. This wardrobe staple is a great item to update for SS16 through some easy DIYs - the perfect topic for my first Oxfam Fashion post!

Sunday, 17 January 2016

Second Hand Style #2: Autumn/Winter Update

Clockwise from top: 1. Leather bag // Colours Kreuzberg 2. Wool jumper // B&B Secondhand 3. Denim dress // Topshop via Ebay 4. Grey silk & angora jumper // B&B Secondhand 5. Ethnic jumper // Zara via Ebay
A big part of ethical fashion is all about regularly curating your wardrobe - making the most of what you already have and adding well-thought out pieces when necessary that will stand the test of time - or as Vivienne Westwood says: "Buy less, choose well, make it last". There are so many great ethical fashion brands to choose from these days, but if your budget doesn't stretch that far then buying second hand or vintage instead is an easy and fun way of shopping more consciously, and of developing your own unique style.

Friday, 15 January 2016

Planning for The Ethical Fashion Show

It’s that time of the year again, when the Ethical Fashion Show opens its doors to over 100 eco-friendly brands and acts as a space for open discussion on some of the hottest topics in the fashion industry right now. I visited the show for the first time last July as part of Berlin Fashion Week, and was amazed at the range of brands on offer, from established labels like People Tree and Komodo to new and upcoming brands such as Muka Va. This year the focus of the show is “Circularity”, and I’m really looking forward to attending some of the lectures led by industry experts.

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

FREE Course: How to Build a Sustainable Fashion Business

Maybe you're already an established ethical fashion designer looking to improve your business? Maybe you'd like to start designing, but don't know where to start combining your creative ideas with a solid business plan and respect for both people and the planet? Maybe, like me, one of your New Year's resolutions was simply to learn more about how fashion and sustainability can work together, and how you can play a role in it? Then the free course "How to Build a Sustainable Fashion Business" from Future Learn and the Ethical Fashion Forum is for you.

Saturday, 9 January 2016

REVIEW: "Fast Fashion: The Dark Side of Fashion" in Dresden

Back in May I posted about a ground-breaking exhibition in Hamburg which aimed to shine some light on the darker side of fast fashion by exploring the impact on its employees, the environment and the global economy. Over 80,000 people visited the exhibition, which has now moved to the Hygiene Museum in Dresden until 3rd July 2016, and as I missed the original format I was very happy to finally get to see it!

Thursday, 7 January 2016

Second Hand Shopping in Berlin #1: Kreuzberg

Colours vintage store in Kreuzberg
It's been just over a month since I moved to Berlin, and now that Christmas and New Year are out of the way I can finally get round to one of the things I've been most looking forward to - second hand shopping! For the first part of this guide, I've focused on two of the biggest vintage stores in Kreuzberg, in the heart the city. Luckily, although the streets have changed somewhat since I lived here in 2010, both stores are still going strong and between them offer an exceptionally wide range of clothing for men and women in all the colours of the rainbow, from the 1950s onwards. Read on for the first part of my guide to second hand style in Berlin!

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Thoughts on New Year's Resolutions

Looking down my Facebook feed on New Year's Eve, it was interesting to see how differently people were reacting to the arrival of 2016. As you might expect, the majority were celebrating the past twelve months and looking forward what the new year will bring, but I was also surprised to see a few bitter comments about how bad 2015 had been, despite good health, many friends and stable jobs.
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