Go green in style with these wardrobe options.
Who knew my ecology degree would come in handy? I had nothing in common with my classmates, who wore T-shirts with slogans that read “Save The Whales.” Back then, going green meant fashion was the last thing on your mind. It was all about a deliberate effort to look like you didn’t care what you looked like. To be taken seriously you had to be “unkempt.”
Thankfully, nowadays, going green doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your sense of style (or hygiene). From the high street to the high end, everyone is turning to eco-friendly alternatives. Fashion designers across the spectrum are embracing the fact that toxins and pollutants are never in style. That in turn has urged retailers like H&M and even Target to carry eco-friendly labels. I scoured the “green” market and found some fabulous designers that are creating sustainable clothing, accessories, perfume, and yes, even sexy shoes. It’s not so hard to create a head-to-toe look that’s chic and environmentally friendly.
Green fashion consists of clothing and accessories that are either reused, recycled or made from sustainable fabrics. It may take a while for us to change the way we think about eco fashion, but when it looks and feels so good, why not?
Sustainable fabrics include organic cotton, bamboo, hemp, corn, soy, peace silk, and other eco-friendly materials. They cause less harm to our environment, and ultimately, to us. So you can now step out in style and leave a daintier, stiletto-shaped carbon footprint – without a Birkenstock in sight.
If you’re looking for a perfect fall coat, look no further. I’d wear this blanket-inspired cozy coat even if it weren’t made from organic wool (wool yarn that has not been exposed to pesticides). Inspired by nature, history and art, the Kristinit label, founded by L.A.-based designer Kristina Lenss, fills a niche for inspirational and sophisticated fashion for the elegant and eco-conscious woman. The line uses innovative organic fabrics, local manufacturing and fair trade practices. Kristinit Coco coat: $185
Let’s face it: Most eco-friendly shoes make you want to run to your most environmentally hazardous stiletto. That’s until I stumbled across Charmone shoes. Charmone is where style meets socially conscious design, and the result is luxurious, Italian-made sexy shoes. It doesn’t hurt that they’re sustainable and cruelty-free, too. The Cinnamon shoe is made entirely of high quality, eco-friendly, low-polluting microfibers. The shoe is vegan (no leather) and made sweatshop-free in Italy. They chose to not use leather in part to be cruelty-free and in part because the tanning of leather is one of the most toxic processes in the world. The entire line is vegan, PVC-free and uses water-based glues. Charmone Cinnamon shoe: $229
I’m all for the tree hugger signature scent of patchouli, but if you’re looking for something a little more refined that’s free of synthetic chemicals, solvent, dyes, and alcohol, A Perfume Organic has the answer. They offer exquisitely crafted perfumes blended from the finest USDA-certified organic botanicals that are hand-poured locally in Manhattan in small batches to maintain purity. The signature perfume, GREEN, bears notes of fruity rose (New York’s state flower), black truffle, two chamomiles, and sweet ylang ylang with a spicy wood finish. The petite bottle and flower seed-embedded box can be planted and recycled in an effort to reduce wasteful packaging. A Perfume Organic, Green: $65
Did you know that 88 (oranges in crate) is the ideal size of an orange when picked from the tree? That’s where the local design label gets its name, 88 Orange. Created by Newport Beach natives Andy Drakeford and Heather Artukovich, 88 Orange’s cozy knits are made from California-grown-and-milled Supima cotton to create lightweight, soft T-shirts and dresses that are refined, simple and ideal for layering. Colors are hand-picked to reflect the natural beauty of the beaches and groves of OC, and all styles are named after local areas. Longing for the clean, fresh scent of the orange groves of their childhood, the clothing is infused in their signature “orange blossom” scent that smells divine. And best thing is: The brand is made right here in Orange County. 88 Orange Montage dress: $140