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I'm Wendy and welcome to Moral Fibres, my green lifestyle blog. Here you'll find all sorts of thrifty and easy hints and tips for living a greener life that won't compromise your sense of style.

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Posts by Category: Fashion

Fashion November 10, 2014 posted by

Your Ethical Style – Jamillah from Made to Travel

Your Ethical Style – Jamillah from Made to Travel

I‘ve got another great Your Ethical Style feature for you today, this time with Jamillah from the ethical fashion blog, Made To Travel.  New York based Jamillah’s posts on ethical fashion are really useful and inspiring – her post on Ethical Fashion 101 is so useful!  Jamillah has some great looks and some really useful advice so, as always, I’m sure you’re going to love this post.

Over to Jamillah:

Hi Jamillah, can you share with us three facts about you?

1) I have 21 first cousins just on my mom’s side and we all grew up together!  So while I only have 1 brother I feel I have a huge family!

2) I’ve been a hair factory pretty for the last 6 years – growing and chopping my hair off to donate.

3) My mama wanted to nickname me Jamie after the Bionic Woman and they happened to know a woman named Jamillah – the only name they could figure Jamie made sense with.  Jamillah actually means beautiful in Arabic, but my parents had no idea until a Jordanian classmate told me in 3rd grade.

Where are your favourite places to shop for ethical clothing?

I love thrifting in a real way, but I also really enjoy supporting ethical designers.  I heart the artisan feel of the clothes from State, the easy/modern pieces from KowTow and I have a super-sized crush on every print at Clover Canyon.

uk fashion blog

Hat – handmade in Iceland / Jacket – thrifted via this Etsy store / Dress- Meg / Vegan bag- Matt & Nat  / Boots – gifted / Ring – Heart of Haiti and gifted / Bracelets – Gifted

What’s the last ethical item that you bought?

These sweatpants from Nancy Goes Green.  Looking forward to cozy chic outfits with them this fall/winter :).

Is there anything ethical or secondhand that you are lusting over at the moment?

I’d really like to score a pastel colored winter coat and a denim shirt dress like this one from Study NY.  I think both pieces would do wonders for my winter wardrobe game!

Do you have a top tip for shopping ethically?

Don’t be afraid to ask questions!!  One thing great about living in the time we do is that getting in touch with retailers is so easy.  If there’s a question you have about where a product is made, how, or with what then tweet, email, leave a Facebook comment on the retailers page and ask it!  There’s also lots of places that offer live chats that I’ve found very useful too.

eco fashion blog

Dress – Asos Africa / Belt – gifted / Shoes – thrifted via Buffalo Exchange / Jewellery – gifted and Made Her Think

Is there anything you find difficult about shopping ethically?

For me the non disclosure is a big issue.  Lots of sites don’t say where an item is made or what it’s made of.  And while we have lots of ways to get in touch with companies some will just not get back to you and that’s infuriating to me.  But I just have to let them go.

Also, when I first started being a more conscious shopper the amount of brands that I found to have questionable practices was astounding.  There are just less brands that are completely transparent and so that process to find the right brands takes a bit of time, but it’s totally worth it!  They are out there!!!  Promise!

Where do you get your style inspiration from?

While I think I have a style that I really enjoy to wear and stick to, I’ve gotten great style experiments from bloggers.  Someone will wear a skirt as a shirt or add a belt where I never would have, and poof, I have new outfits from things I already own.

What is your best secondhand or ethical find ever?

Ooo, I have a long list!  I think brand wise I got  a hot pink skirt suit by Bill Blass and a white denim jacket from Helmut Lang.  Both were practically nothing from thrift stores.  But my favorite favorite thrifted item to wear are these flower pants that I bought a couple of years ago – they are my happy outfit!  And my fave ethical find would have to be my winter coat from the German company Hessnatur (top photo).  I bought it on sale and a couple of weeks later they stopped shipping to the US, so I was elated I bought it when I did.

ethical clothes

Jacket – very old / Denim shirt & sandals – thrifted via Buffalo Exchange / Flower trousers – thrifted via goodwill / Rings – gifted & Nissa ring

What would be your ultimate thrifted find?

I would be ecstatic to find the perfect shirt dress….  I LOVE a good shirt dress.

Finally Jamillah, can you share three ethical style tips with us?

1) Take a moment to think.  Do you need the item?  Would you really wear the item?  How are you going to wear it?  Curating a thoughtful wardrobe took a lot of practice, but it’s worth it!  I was a very impulsive shopper, buying lots of things because they were really pretty but finding they weren’t necessarily my style.  If I had just took a moment to think at those times I would’ve saved so much money!

2) Don’t pay attention to size!  I have a ridiculous range of sizes in my closet, you’d think 8 different women were in my apartment!  But vintage sizes run very differently than modern sizes and even contemporary retailers have huge disparities when it comes to size.  Keep an open mind and get the sizes that fit the way you want your clothes to fit.

3) Find a shoe repair guy and a tailor STAT.  My shoe guy has done wonders for me.  I usually bring a bunch of shoes to be repaired twice a year.  PRO TIP! – If your guy’s a local little shoe dude, like mine, he’ll swing a discount for bringing a bundle in at a time :).

ethical style

Sweater – thrifted via goodwill / Bag-  Hearts / Trousers – Marketplace Handwork of India / Shoes – thrifted via goodwill / Rings – gifted and Nissa

Thanks for taking part Jamillah!  You can follow Jamillah’s blog, Made To Travel, and find her on Twitter.  New to Moral Fibres?  You can also check out the other Your Ethical Style posts!

Do you want to share your ethical style with Moral Fibres readers?  Whatever your age, sex, size, style, budget or location I’d love to feature you to show that ethical fashion is for everyone!  Get in touch via moralfibres@gmail.com to take part in Your Ethical Style!  There are no barriers to taking part – you don’t have to be a blogger to be featured!

Fashion October 29, 2014 posted by

Men’s Ethical Clothing Companies

Men’s Ethical Clothing Companies

Men’s ethical clothing can be a little trickier to track down than their female counterparts, but there are still lots of great shops and companies out there catering to the ethical man!  To make life as easy as possible for you I’ve put together some of my favourite options on men’s ethical clothing companies, and other outlets where you can buy men’s ethical clothing.

This list will be ever evolving as I find more shops, so make sure you bookmark this post or add it to Pinterest and revisit it on a semi-regular basis!

To help support running costs of the blog any links marked with a * after them are affiliate links.  These don’t affect the price you pay for items or your consumer rights, such as your right to return items – it just means I get a very tiny percentage of the sale price if you buy anything via the link, which helps cover my web hosting and things like that.

where to buy mens ethical clothing

I’ve broadly categorised the shops by price range to make life easy:

Budget – £

Beyond Retro – If you’re into vintage clothing and one-off vintage pieces then Beyond Retro say they have biggest range of men’s vintage fashion in the UK, with clothes from the 50s to the 90s.

eBay – eBay has changed in recent years, but it is still possible to shop for secondhand clothes on a tight budget.  Filtering for secondhand clothing only and setting a maximum budget for each item are great tips for shopping ethically on a budget.  You can also find some other useful tips on my post on eBay shopping tips.

H.O.V. – H.O.V. sell fashion-led men’s vintage clothing, with prices from £9.

Oxfam* – Oxfam have a super collection of secondhand clothes for sale on their website, so you don’t have to spend hours wandering round charity shops.  Instead, grab a beer or a coffee and peruse their secondhand collection from the comfort of your sofa.

Wolfe Academy – Wolfe Academy sell a large selection of Earth Positive t-shirts printed with water based inks.

Budget – ££

Arthur and Henry – classic shirts for the ethical man.

Braintree Clothing* – casual organic cotton, hemp and bamboo menswear.

Brothers We Stand – design led ethical menswear

Cock and Bull Menswear – classic designs (think flat caps, bespoke tweed, and more) all made in the UK.

Ethical Superstore* – a one-stop shop for a wide variety of ethical brands.

Ethletic – Ethical Converse style trainers made from FSC certified natural rubber and FLO certified organic cotton.

Etsy* – a wide selection of hand-made, hand-printed and vintage menswear from sellers worldwide.  If you don’t want to get stung by import duties search for shops in the UK only.

Finisterre – focussing on ethical clothing for outdoor sports.

Frank and Faith – stocking a wide variety of ethical menswear brands.

Greenfibres – a small range of organic and natural fairtrade menswear which is 100% chemical free.

Howies* – active clothing ethically made, with a focus on quality clothing that lasts.

Katharine Hamnett – this campaigning designer sells ethically made t-shirts with a message.

Komodo – one of the original pioneers of ethical clothing, they have a wide men’s selection.

Liv – Liv have carefully sourced a nice selection of ethical men’s clothing.

Lost Shapes – ethically made organic t-shirts, hand printed in Somerset.

Monkee Genes – ethically made jeans.  Keep your eye out for amazing sales.

People Tree* – formal and casual ethical men’s clothing.   Take 10% off full priced items with code FIBRES10!

Rapanui – this Isle of Wight outfit focus on unique t-shirts, jumpers and hoodies.

Rockit – a huge selection of men’s vintage clothing online.

Silverstick – hoodies, sweatshirts, t-shirts and polo shirts for active lifestyles.

The Natural Store – a wide range of ethical clothing and accessories from a variety of brands.

The White T-Shirt Company – simple, eco-friendly ethical basics

Veleco – the UK’s first ethical cycle clothing manufacturers.

Yew Clothing* – ethically made sports and casual wear made from sustainable materials, such as recycled polyester.

Zalando* – stock a wide selection of ethical mens clothing from a variety of brands, including European brands not commonly found in the UK.

Budget – £££

Hiut Denim – bespoke jeans, handmade in Cardigan.

Nudie Jeans – 100% organic jeans made with sustainability in mind.  And if your Nudie jeans need mending you can pop into their London shop for a free repair service, or they can send you a repair kit free of charge.

Traidremade – a sustainable fashion label working exclusively with high quality reclaimed textiles.

If you know of any other men’s ethical clothing companies/stockists that you think should be included here then let me know in the comments below or drop me an email on moralfibres@gmail.com

ps: if you like this then you might also be interested in my posts on: ethical men’s underwear and ethical menswear for autumn.

Fashion October 27, 2014 posted by

Your Ethical Style – Stephannie Hay

Your Ethical Style – Stephannie Hay

Time for another Your Ethical Style feature!  This time, Edinburgh blogger Stephannie Hay is sharing her ethical style tips, secrets and inspiration with us.  Stephannie blogs at The Inelegant Horserider a blog about, funnily enough, horse riding, with Stephannie’s other loves of running and ethical fashion thrown in for good measure.

horse rider

Stephannie and her beautiful horse

Over to Stephannie:

Hi Stephannie, can you share with us three fun facts about you?
I took up horse riding again about eight years ago and love it, hence the name of the blog.  I am a nervous rider and wanted the blog to help me realise how much I have achieved and it allows me to chart my highs and lows.  The blog has really helped me during my recent attack of nerves.

I live in Edinburgh.  I adore the city – it is a beautiful place to stay and I love how small it is for a city.  I like being able to get to the country and the coast in no time at all.

I am pretty terrible at sewing or crafting but I love trying.  Just now I am attempting to learn to knit again: it’s going slowly but it’s fun.  Oh, and my baking is very much bingo baking – sometimes you win, sometimes you don’t!

Where are your favourite places to shop for ethical clothing?
Probably Howies, Finisterre and People Tree.  I also like Rapanui for t-shirts, they have brilliant prints and the softest material.  Last year I took part in the Wartime Wardrobe Challenge – a year long clothes rationing challenge – and started getting into eBay again.  This year I have also been to a few clothes swaps which are good fun, especially when combined with friends and cocktails!  I also really like Totty Rocks, an Edinburgh based design duo.  They are so friendly and happily alter items to fit you perfectly.

What’s the last ethical item that you bought?
The last secondhand item I got was a black and white stripe top at a clothes swap a couple of weeks ago, which I love.  The last ethical item I bought was a brilliant pair of cycling chinos from Howies which have a higher waistband at the back and extra stretch making them perfect for, well, cycling!  I adore them: I wanted a pair for a while now and the fact they are smart enough for the office is even better.

clothes swapping

Some of Stephannie’s clothes swap finds!

Is there anything ethical or secondhand that you are lusting over at the moment?
A Vaute Couture Emily coat in Emerald.  One of the bloggers I follow, Jesse Anne O, introduced me to this brand and I haven’t managed to buy anything yet but I love their coats.  They look so luxurious and warm plus the colour is incredible.  Alternatively I would settle for a Finisterre padded jacket, they look so cosy and stylish – perfect for being out and about whether on horseback or not.

Do you have a top tip for shopping ethically?
I think this top tip is probably just a top tip in general – I would say taking your time is key.  I have made so many purchasing mistakes through impulse instead of thinking if I need the item or in most cases if I love it.  Let’s face it, we all have items that we love in our wardrobe and ones that we don’t.  I think this tip is especially important at clothes swaps or second hand or vintage shopping as sometimes it can be tempting to get lots of items which you don’t need just because they are free or cheap.

jumping

Is there anything you find difficult about shopping ethically?
Jodhpurs are a niche item which are hard to find ethically produced!  Joking aside I do find certain parts of sportswear tricker to source and some ethical brands I have tried have not been up to the job.  It is definitely getting better though with Ronhill, who have a pretty decent ethical policy.  Howies also have some good cycling and running gear, while Finisterre have good base layers.  And, of course, if in doubt you can patch and mend while emailing each company you like asking about their ethical policies!

Where do you get your style inspiration from?
A tricky question for me as I am in a bit of a style quandary at the moment, I’m not even sure I have a style!  But I like the 1920s/30s/40s style captured beautifully in the Agatha Christie Poirot series.  I also love looking at street styles, friends’ style and other bloggers style for inspiration.  I particularly enjoy Franca at Oranges and Apples (you can check out Franca’s ethical style here!), Jesse Anne O, and Katie at Sustainability in Style.

What is your best secondhand or ethical find ever?
I have a couple of these!  Firstly I love my bright red Totty Rocks mac printed with blue ponies on the belt and collar.  I got it as a reward for achieving something important to me and it is made to measure with these huge pockets that can fit so many things in it so you don’t need a bag! The other items are kind of a set: I have my mother’s denim Chinese-style jacket and denim shirt from the 70s.  They are fabulous, worn to the softest denim and I like the fact that I have pictures of my mum in these items styled totally differently from how I wear them.

Totty rocks mac

Stephannie’s gorgeous Totty Rocks mac.

What would be your ultimate thrifted find?
Hmm this one is one for the horse riding folk, but I would to love to find some Ariat Windermere boots – perfect for riding and stomping around in.

Finally, Stephannie, can you share three ethical style tips with us:
Clothes swaps are brilliant fun.

The internet is your friend for ethical shopping: people out there have often done some of the hard work for you.  See Ceri’s Ethical Fashion Blog and Ethical High Street as just two examples.

If you can make friends with your sewing machine or even friends with someone who can use a sewing machine (in my case my mum!) it helps for fixing and altering items that you need to.  My mum managed to rescue a jumper that was attacked by moths by patching the holes with brightly coloured sequins.  It’s so simple but looks great!

sequin jumper

Thanks for taking part Stephannie!  You can follow Stephannie’s blog, The Inelegant Horserider, and find her on Twitter.  New to Moral Fibres?  You can also check out the other Your Ethical Style posts!

Do you want to share your ethical style with Moral Fibres readers?  Whatever your age, sex, size, style, budget or location I’d love to feature you to show that ethical fashion is for everyone!  Get in touch via moralfibres@gmail.com to take part in Your Ethical Style!  There are no barriers to taking part – you don’t have to be a blogger to be featured!

Fashion October 15, 2014 posted by

6 Women’s Vegan Shoes You’ll Love

6 Women’s Vegan Shoes You’ll Love

disclosure

I‘ve spoken before about the ethical dilemma of leather vs. non leather and six months on I’ll still not entirely sure what the answer is.  Personally as a vegetarian I’m happy to wear vintage or secondhand leather or new vegetable tanned leather, but equally I understand that not everyone is happy wearing leather.

If you’re not happy wearing animal based products then I’ve been on the lookout for some stylish women’s vegan shoes.  I think I’ve done alright – I’ve found a selection for most occasions that I think you’ll love:

vegan shoes

Here are some lovely women’s vegan shoes, from the top:

Esprit Women have a lovely range of vegan PETA approved shoes.  I think Esprit may have had a fairly checkered past with regards to ethical issues, but seem to be making roads to resolve this.  This association with PETA just launched in July, and I hope it’s the start of good things to come from this high street retailer.  I’m liking these lace up ankle boots (£55) and these tiger print trainers (£45) from their vegan range.

I’m a little bit in love with these teal Oxford style vegan heels from Beyond Skin (£71).  Alas, they only have them left in small sizes otherwise I’d have these in a heartbeat….

Good old TOMS UK have some funky women’s vegan shoes in stock.  I love this zebra print pair (£39.99) – they’d look great with skinny jeans.

These ethical tan brogues (£87) from Bourgeois Boheme are so pretty.  I do like a good pair of brogues, they make wonderful shoes for autumn.

Finally Inkkas have some lovely hand made and fair-trade vegan trainers.  I’m especially taken with these grey ones (£44) with their jazzy South American fabric panelling.  What a way to brighten up an outfit!

Which ones are your favourite?

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