Monday, 24 June 2013

Eco Chic - Guest Blog

This is a guest post by Niki Whittle, owner of Niki Whittle Image and Style Consulting Services, Bristol, UK. You can find her on Twitter at @nikiwhittle. The original post appeared on her blog: To know more about Niki, read our interview with her. She was also recently on our twitter chat party we hosted @beluxedfashion, where she was a panelist and gave style tips and discussed June Fashion: Must Dos Must Haves. Check it out on this link

My recent post about changing our shopping habits focused on encouraging you to make the most of the clothes you already have, to make informed decisions when making new purchases and to spend the maximum you can on one great quality item rather than two or three of lesser quality. I also wrote about how to pull together a capsule collection of clothes, but what I haven't mentioned, is shopping ethically.

One of my readers made a valid point saying that spending more for an item of clothing doesn’t necessarily guarantee that it’s not been produced at minimum cost to be sold for maximum profit, and asked me if I could point her towards some ethical fashion retailers.

Now before I continue, I feel that I need to be open with you; I have to admit that I rarely seek to purchase clothes that are ethical or eco friendly and I don’t really know much about this area. I shop the high-street all the time, both for my clients and myself, as it’s the perfect place to source great items without having to stretch your budget beyond your means. But at the same time, this doesn’t mean that I don’t shop responsibly. I shop responsibly by making sure that I love the items I buy, that they fit well, are versatile, slot seamlessly into my wardrobe and will be worn again and again.

But yes, I know there is more that I can do and I couldn’t ignore your requests for more information, so after some lengthy research I’ve pulled together this post for you. It lists some great online resources where you can find out more about ethical fashion, along with a list of ethical, eco friendly and sustainable fashion retailers that are producing some great collections and my favourite ethical fashion blogs. I’ve even picked out my favourite pieces to prove to you that eco chic really is chic…because let’s be honest, I can’t be the only person guilty of thinking ethical fashion is all hippy and hemp?

Resources (links)
Great tips for how to wear vintage from A Pair and a Spare
Find out the ethical and environmental ratings of our high street retailers here
Great eco magazines:Green my style and eco chic magazine
A fantastic site for inspiration on re-working old outfits and keeping clothing waste out of landfill sites: Redress
Estethica is founded by the British fashion council and showcases ‘the growing movement of cutting edge designers committed to working eco sustainably’

Angel Jackson
Fashion Conscience
Izzy Lane
People Tree
Style Is
Lost Property Of London
Beautiful Soul
Stewart Brown
Beyond Skin
Fair and True
Aymo (Bristol Based)
Charlie Boots (Bristol based)
Marks and Spencer are launching their ‘Best of British’ collection featuring gorgeous heritage fabrics all manufactured in the UK. It marks the beginning of a 3-year partnership with the British Fashion Council "which will see the retailer working with the BFC to celebrate British fashion, home-grown talent and sustainability". The collection isn't available in store until the end of July but here's a peek of what to look forward to...

. Best of British Cream Cable Knitted Jumper GBP 129.00, Dark Pink Herringbone Skirt GBP 89.00. / 2. Chelsea Boot GBP 185, Black White & Pink Check Wool Cocoon Coat GBP 299.00. / 3. Black Tailored Suit Jacket GBP 199.00, Black Tailored Turn Up Trouser GBP 129.00, Black Brogues GBP 165.00. / 4.Long Ivory Deep V Wool Coat GBP 299.00, Grey Tailored Trouser GBP 129.00.

Fashion blogs

Ethical Fashion Blog

Eco Fabulous

Very Nice Threads

The Good Wardrobe

Oxfam Fashion Blog

And what about my favourite eco pieces? Well, there were so many to choose from, but here are my top picks...

Of course, there are other ways to make responsible style choices such as reworking old designs...

1. / 2. / /

...buying second hand from charity shops or vintage boutiques, hosting swishing parties or even hiring a wow dress for your special occasion. All these things keep clothing waste out of landfill sites but not only that, they also give you something unique to wear – win win!

So you see there are endless ways to make a difference. So what will you do?


  1. Love the cut out tops :D

  2. Very good stuff with good ideas and concepts, lots of great information and inspiration, both of which we all need, helpful iformation. I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article.


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