Ethical + Sustainable Places to Shop

FINALLY. My promised follow-up to why I started caring who made my clothes blog post with my new favorite ethical places to get clothes and shoes. There are manyyyyyyy other ethical and sustainable companies that you can find, but these are companies that I have actually bought something from. 

  1. Nisolo, for leather shoes and goods. I love their mission, their materials, the way they treat their employees, and the fact that I could walk in my leather wedges all day long.  

    “To push the fashion industry in a more sustainable direction--where success is based on more than just offering the cheapest price--a direction that not only values exceptional design but the producer and the planet just as much as the end consumer.”
  2. Veja, for tennis shoes. They have tons of cute styles that sort of mimic all the trendy shoes out there right now. True story, they are so much more comfortable compared to my Nike Internationalists that I used to wear!! And similar in price as well. They’re based in France so shipping could be tricky, but there are stores in the US that sell them, so google that! They use sustainable materials and they care about their factory workers. 
  3. Girlfriend Collective, for women’s activewear! They made my yoga pants out of recycled water bottles! Seriously, so comfy (comfort is obviously a big deal to me, if you haven’t figured out by now) AND I feel stylish and skinny in them. They are working on an entire line coming out soon so get on their email list. 
  4. L.A. Relaxed, for women’s clothing. I’m not a huge fan of all of their items, but I have gotten a few things from them and they are SO SOFT.

    "Where it’s made, who’s making it, and what it’s made of is at the heart of LA Relaxed."
  5. Noonday, for jewelry. They are fashionable - always coming out with fun new styles and ethical - partnering with 29 artisan business in 12 countries around the world. 
  6. Melt Goods, for minimal modern jewelry. They employee refugees in Dallas! The Rozeh stud earrings are one of my staple jewelry pieces. Bonus, my friend Meredith started this company and I love supporting my friends, especially when they're supporting others. 

    "We believe one of the best ways to alleviate poverty is through employment. Employment provides hope, purpose and dignity." 
  7. Everlane had been a huge staple for me when I came across it a few years ago. I really liked their transparency about pricing (not marking up products to the consumer) and factories. But after researching more, I wish they gave more information about their employment wages and conditions. Also, they don't use organic cotton, which is actually a bigger deal than I used to think. Maybe I'll write on that next. For quick info on the impact of non-organic fabrics, I still recommend watching The True Cost
  8. Thrift shops and resale shops! By not buying brand new clothes, you are slowing down the demand for new clothes and new styles (fast fashion). Also, this is an inexpensive option to finding new clothes! Especially because old trends come back in style! Thrift stores are classics, but my go to online resale shop right now is Poshmark. The Reserve is my favorite little vintage leather shop to keep my eyes on. Want the best of best of both worlds? Slowre sells secondhand ethical clothing!! There's also ThredUP and Swap for online resale shops. 
  9. Also, swapping with your friends is fun! Trade a few pieces for a couple or weeks. Or, ask to borrow a special occasion dress from a friend and be willing to share your own clothes. :) I started to realize I don't need as many new things as I thought I did. 

There are SO many more companies that I want to try but haven’t gotten to yet (like Allbirds, Accompany, Symbology, 31 Bits, Gaia and more). You know, budget. And that shopping pause I agreed to a few months ago ((taking a pause from buying clothes, shoes and accessories until July 23)). 

When I come across something ethical or sustainable that's CUTE, I save it on my Pinterest board, so follow along if you are interested! 

Do you have an ethical or sustainable place I should shop? Let me knowwwww. 

And thanks for reading this!!! 

Veja shoes and Girlfriend Collective leggings

Veja shoes and Girlfriend Collective leggings

Photo by Nisolo. 

Photo by Nisolo. 

Melt Goods Earrings, Everlane denim shirt, thrifted funky sweater and honorable mention  Linea Jewelry  necklace! 

Melt Goods Earrings, Everlane denim shirt, thrifted funky sweater and honorable mention Linea Jewelry necklace! 

Photo by  Gaia

Photo by Gaia

Why I Started Caring About Who Made My Clothes

Why I Started Caring About #whomademyclothes

It’s Fashion Revolution Week, so I thought I would take a minute to share why I started caring about who made my clothes. 

A little over a year ago, my eyes were opened to the fast fashion industry. One documentary (The True Cost - Netflix!) and tons of articles later, I couldn’t ignore it. It has affected so many of my decisions since then. 

Here are 3 reasons that why I started caring about who made my clothes and where they came from. 

  1. The realization that somewhere in the world, there are real people making my clothes. What are their lives like? Are they getting paid fairly? Do they work reasonable hours? There is a reason why you can get clothes so cheap. Costs have been cut somewhere. As the fashion revolution website describes it, “The majority of the people who makes clothes live in poverty, unable to afford life’s basic necessities. Many are subject to exploitation; verbal and physical abuse, working in unsafe and dirty conditions, with very little pay.” These are real people.
  2. Fashion is the second highest polluting industry in the world, second only to oil. The details are vast and difficult for me to explain. But, as the demand for faster fashion increases, the bigger the problem is becoming. This isn't just damaging the earth but the people that are involved in creating all of the materials as well. You can read more details about it here.
  3. What I spend my money on is what I choose to invest in. I get to choose where I spend my money! What a crazy thought! No one says I have to shop at certain places. If I’m going to buy something, I want to further companies that I believe in, not the other way around. It’s not just what items I choose to purchase, but what companies I choose to support. 

I know I'm just one person but I realized that by participating in the fast fashion industry, I was feeding the ugly monster. 

I love this quote from Simon Parry in his article written just last June, “You [we] are supporting the culture of cheap products. When customers say, 'I will only buy a sustainable product that has been made responsibly,' the entire supply chain will change, because the market rules. It is the customer who is the king.

It hasn’t been easy to only shop at stores that I can back or buy clothes that have been made responsibly. Of course I haven’t done it 100% of the time. But it has changed the way I view shopping entirely. In my next blog post, I’ll share a few of my new favorite ethical companies that I like to shop at now. I encourage everyone to take time to think about how your purchases go beyond just buying something - that they effect real people's lives.  

Fashion Revolution Week was started after the Rana Plaza incident to shed light on the fashion industry. “Much of the global fashion industry is opaque, exploitative and environmentally damaging and desperately needs revolutionary change. We love fashion, but we don’t want our clothes to come at the cost of people or the planet.”  Other articles around the Rana Plaza incident: here and here