Tag Archives: hemp

Sustainable Spring Scarves

Spring was AWOL this past week in San Francisco. So I found myself more often reaching for a scarf and jacket rather than sandals and a skirt. Here is a round up of sustainable scarves.

Azuri Organic Cotton Scarf from Nimli.com

Organic Cotton Spring Scarf by Margiwarg from Etsy.com

Squid Scarf by Gaiaconceptions from Etsy.com


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Pick Your Favorite Tunic

Edun Idris Tunic from http://www.nordstrom.com

Pretty Birdie Open Back Tunic from http://www.etsy.com

ISDA & CO Square Neck Tunic from http://www.zappos.com

City chic, yoga cool, or preppy clean. No matter your look, there’s an eco-friendly tunic just for you. Made of organic cotton, Edun‘s racy version features a slim fit, contrasting trim and cutouts on the sleeve. Pretty Birdie‘s relaxed cut comes in hemp and organic cotton jersey, with an open back, wide cowl neck, sleeve tabs, side pocket, and skinny belt. And last but not least, ISDA & CO‘s minimal design, offered in organic cotton, is a study in geometry thanks to a square neckline formed from a rectangular bandeau.  Clearly, the choice is yours.

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A Classic SF Dress in Sustainable Fabric from She-bible

She-bible Organic Classic Dress

She-bible is a label that designs and makes clothing in San Francisco. Turns out they are making their best-selling dress in an organic cotton, hemp and lycra blend. The fit on this dress is fabulous thanks to a bias cut panel, which forms a pretty cowl neck. Ties at either side of the torso allow for a custom body-hugging fit. Pretty and elegant, this look will take you easily from day to night.

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Saks’ New Catalog Needs More Sustainable Fabrics

Eileen Fisher Cardigan from Saks Fifth Avenue

The Saks Fifth Avenue March Fashion 2010 catalog arrived today. It’s tagline?  “Think about . . . newsworthy nature.” A promising invitation to behold innovations in sustainable fashion, or so I thought. The reality was that there were many beautiful and clearly artisan-made pieces, yet there was a dearth of products sustainable in other ways. The one exception was this simple, elegant cardigan made of hemp and spun silk by Eileen Fisher. The material is sustainable because hemp is made from a fast growing and naturally insect repelling plant (which is illegal to grow in the U.S.), while spun silk is renewable, biodegradable, and leaves the moth unharmed.

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A Start on the Definition of Sustainable Fashion

What does sustainable fashion mean?  It’s a question that is increasingly being asked by people in the fashion industry, such as Vanessa Friedman, the FT’s fashion editor. In her February 10, 2010 article on the topic, she points out that the definition varies according to who you ask. She concluded that there is no collective answer yet because ” . . . we are in the middle of  a paradigm shift.”

In my mind, sustainable fashion has to have a lasting positive impact on a personal, environmental, and social level. Examples of this include apparel and accessories that are:

  • Made from recycled materials. Ties into belts, jeans into skirts, tops into hats, these are just some examples of the recycled trend.
  • Made from materials grown without the use of pesticides, which cause rashes, harm industry workers, and pollute our planet. Organic cotton comes to mind.
  • Made from rapidly renewable materials. One example is fabric made of bamboo, which grows quickly and thrives without the use of fertilizers or pesticides.
  • Made in an ethical way. Think handbags made in a cooperative that employs people who would otherwise not have a job.
  • Recyclable. Once the useful life of the piece is over, it will biodegrade, instead of adding to a landfill. Think tencel fabric, which is made of woodpulp.
  • Vintage. The life of the item is extended so that it stays out of a landfill and new resources are not used to create it.
  • Artisanal quality. The maker of the item has comfortable working conditions and enjoys a good quality of life thanks to a higher wage. The product is likely to last season after season, thus reducing your need to buy a new item.
  • Locally made. When something is made near you, then less resources were used in the transport of the item. Also, by purchasing the product, it’s like investing in your community.
  • Comfortable. The more comfortable an item is, the longer you’ll wear it. Using an item to the end of it’s usable life maximizes the use of the resources that went into making the product.
  • Beautiful. Some pieces you cherish all your life and pass down to loved ones, which means less consumption.

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A Highly Sustainable Capelet

Mountains of the Moon Heidi Capelet

On cold nights capelets are a great alternative to sweaters. With a rich violet outer layer and gingham flannel on the inside, this capelet from Mountains of the Moon takes the chill off in more ways than one. Made of tencel, hemp, organic cotton, and recycled buttons — a highly sustainable design. For a modern, feminine look, this piece would pair nicely with an A-line dress or skirt.

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