Resolutions from Berlin Ethical Fashion Show

I packed learnings of balance in my suitcase back from Berlin (alongside this Resolution organic cotton tee by Cruba). 

I should have known it would be a knowledge excursion when I spotted my school history teacher on our flight over. Ms Hodson taught me everything I know about Berlin’s past, and I was about to learn about the future and significant hub the city has created for the international fashion crowd that likes their lewk sustainable. 

I could share spring summer 2019 trends from the Greenshowroom, now rebranded NEONYT – a combination of the old Greek and Swedish words for new,  but this isn’t a show that promotes out with the old, in with the new seasonal dressing. One could note hemp like you’ve never seen it; cullotes; the colours yellow, rose, summer black, and athleisure with a persuasion for tennis above all other sports, but the newness at NEONYT is more about optimism for a change in fashion for good. The designers showing here are about capsule wardrobes with considered additions and innovation like this clever cork bag by COSSAC. 

This bag will beautifully balance summer essentials – beach towel + big book, which brings me back to the dressing lesson I’m taking back from Berlin – balance.

Even though the city was sweltering, Berliners struck the balance in summer-wear they felt comfortable in that didn’t look like it belonged at the beach. Sometimes it is tough in the city to get the right harmony of skin-on-show, shoes that are pavement or even cobble friendly, but aren’t sweaty and Berlin handled the heat perfectly.

My strategy was a lotta linen, like this ’80s Oscar de la Renta dress (above) and Noumenon shirt (below) with trainers or a wedge. 

And a free and easy Etro wrap skirt from my local Mary’s Living and Giving Shop worn with a COSSAC t-shirt and a choker made from surplus furniture fabric by Noumenon, as before.  

The other resolution I made, actually just before Berlin was to give up gel nail varnish. I’m ashamed to say that despite making an effort to live green, my make-up bag has RSVP’d, but is yet to attend the party. I’ve swapped all lipsticks for organic Ilia shades, but I am still working through things, so next up it’s nails. People in the clean beauty scene talk in the number of chemicals a nail polish is free from – the starting point being 3-free – meaning formulas with no formaldehyde, toluene or dibutyl phthalate. I love having long nails and gel polishes kept them strong and long, albeit unnaturally, so I was thrilled to find vegan non-toxic 10-free formulas by Kure Bazaar. The nail polishes are nourishing with 85% of the formulation derived of natural origin, such as wood pulp and potato.

I’m wearing them shorter in Beige Milk whilst they repair, but the collection is full of awesome spring summer 19 ready colours like Sunset (above).  

*Content Beauty is currently  offering a free base coat when you buy two Kure Bazaar nail polishes, so it’s a good time to buy if you’re trying to cure a gel mani addiction.

The Fresh Therapies remover is designed to retain the natural oil in your nails and all of the ingredients are biodegradable, plus it actually smells good (as if you’ve just been squeezing limes).  

But as ever, when you commit to resolutions, there’s always more you can do. I’ve been a pescatarian since I was nine and in recent years I’ve removed more and more dairy from my diet. Agata, founder of COSSAC and Dena, founder of Noumenon invited me and my friend Rebecca for dinner with the team from Vegan Good Life magazine.  By chance, we sat by dietary group with the meat eaters on one end, vegans on the other and me in the middle.  There was no logic to our seating order as we were all sharing vegan plates at 1990 Vegan Living, which was, as billed, ‘hands down the best Vietnamese place.’

I’m not going vegan yet, but I’m thinking about it, and the Vegan Good Life special edition, Ethical Fashion Today is good fashion for thought.

Get your copy here

©Photographs Reclaimed Woman & courtesy of COSSAC   

 

 

 

Conscious Christmas Gifts

Fashion Revolution fanzine #001:Money Fashion Power  pages of poetry, illustration, photography, graphic design and editorials that explore the hidden stories behind our clothes

green rose earrings by Gung Ho from Ethical Collection

nothing more, nothing less t-shirt by Prabal Gurung from YOOXYGEN

lip crayon in shade Keen by Axiology from Content Beauty

sample vial of Edition Perfume She Came to Stay inspired by the novel written by Simone de Beauvoir in 1943.  A unique stocking filler or just an excuse to top-up the shopping basket and enjoy the holiday discounts on Content Beauty when you spend £30+ (ends 29th Nov 2017)

candy skull leggings by Yoga Democracy from Rêve En Vert

antique jewellery box LASSCO

face care kit Natural Spa Supplies featuring British Hemp Oil Soft Soap,  Rhassoul Clay, fragrant Organic Rose water and Virgin Cold Pressed Organic Argan Oil

 

Conscious Consumer

Jumpsuits aren’t always the smartest move when it comes to travelling, but I always seem to choose one because the chic/comfort balance outweighs the likely woman v jumpsuit wrestling in the loo. This People Tree collaboration with the V&A is wonderful.  The Tulip print is based on a fabric from the 1930s, originally by the Calico Printers’ Association in Manchester, now held in the V&A archive.

In Safe Hands hand cream Laidbare

V&A collaboration jumpsuit People Tree

Classic Small Drawstring bag Baia

EcoTools sustainable sleep mask from Boots

Sandals Brother Vellies

Conscious Consumer

I couldn’t resist Randy’s Reproductive System Sweater from Rachel Antonoff for World Population Day with a portion of the proceeds being donated to Planned Parenthood (even if it is harder to get your hands on in the UK)

Barocco handcraft pieces like these Wishbone earrings using ancient casting techniques and work with Fair Trade and recycled metals. Shop at Gather & See

ZAO organic eyeshadow in Pearly Old Pink Beautifully Organic

Vegan note pad with 100% recycled nylon lining Matt & Nat

Fair & true orange skirt from Fashion-Conscience.com

Stella McCartney faux-leather loafers MatchesFashion.com

Colour analysis for a confident conscious wardrobe

Wardrobe dilemma – It’s summer and all I want to do is break out playful printed dresses when our British climate plays ball, but switching between boots and sandals, bohemian dresses and woolies doesn’t make my winter white skin feel ready.

Wardrobe solution – The unpredictable climate doesn’t mean you can’t have confidence when swapping between seasons, if you know the colours that suit you.  I just had my colours analysed and it turns out I am Spring.  I know what you’re thinking, sounds dated.  Like a service suited to a generation that hasn’t grown-up with wardrobe apps and WhatsApp to share fitting room try-ons with fashion friends.  But I cannot recommend Adonica Simmons, who analysed my colours highly enough. 

I am undergoing a wardrobe detox, but as a woman that has worked in the fashion industry for years, I thought the only lessons yet to learn were about making more ethical-conscious choices.  

It’s a stereotype, but it’s true that most style-conscious women, particularly in fashion PR come clad in black, navy and grey (excluding the obligatory colourful bag and/or fun phone case).   So I particularly recommend colour analysis for fashion women, that yes, know the style rules, but perhaps not the confidence building colours that personally apply for them.  

Adonica Simmons is founder of Global Style Services, which helps women and men save time and money, by refreshing their existing wardrobe in a myriad of ways.  It’s said that 3 out of 5 items of clothing purchased end up in landfill or incineration within the same 12 months, so I can’t think of a better service if it helps us find more fulfilment from the fashion we buy.

I met Adonica as a fellow styling volunteer for Smart Works Charity and like me, she left her corporate job to start her own business.

“Many years as a professional woman in the IT world taught me that the daily task of getting dressed should not be underestimated as it has a direct impact on how you feel and perform, as well as how others engage and respond to you.” – Adonica of GSS

Colour analysis is the difference between compliments like, wow I love that outfit, to wow, you look well.  After applying what I learnt from Adonica, 2 people in the space of 2 weeks complimented me on my teeth.  They’re not that great, I am after all still British, but with better knowledge about which shade of red suits my skin.

Check out my conscious shopping edit below for Spring women like me and see Global Style Services for your own colour analysis, personal styling and more.

Dress Beautiful Soul London

Kosas lipstick in shade Thrillest from  Revolve

LA based organic cotton underwear brand Pansy  – high on my list to shop when I can try before I buy.  See here for global stockists

Peggy-Sue bamboo socks Thought

Vegan Hologram Daphne espadrilles Beyond Skin