Congratulations to talented U.K. designer Nicola Woods of 'Beautiful Soul' for her recent recognition award of Future 100: Future Talent - Budding Entrepreneurs on the Horizon 2009. Nicola's latest kimono-inspired SS 2010 Collection, Miss Butterfly, will soon be available at the V&A's fabulously curated museum shop.
Embellishments and accessories for 'Miss Butterfly' were handmade by a small cooperative (Umdoni Creek) that 'Beautiful Soul' set up in South Africa in 2008 and feature indigenous up-cycled ingredients and fabric remnants. The designer graduated from The London College of Fashion in 2008, and was invited to spend her summer designing for a charity in South Africa. Upon her return to the U.K., Nicola decided to start up her own ethical fashion label, 'Beautiful Soul', as way to "use fashion as a tool" as well as "providing training and motivation for less-privileged communities in the U.K. and around the globe".
'Beautiful Soul' has gained recognition for its creative, intelligent and open minded approach to design, winning the Ethical Fashion Forum’s Innovation award, in February 2009 as well as being a finalist at the Fashioning the Future Summit in November 2008. In addition, in September 2009 'Beautiful Soul' debuted at ‘Estethica’, London Fashion Week and showcased at the Interstoff Asia, Hong Kong; promoting sustainable fashion design. Nicola Woods is definitely one-to-watch, and celebrate as a designer with vision and true, theatrical imagination.
Felicitations to Hélène Sananikone for the re-opening of the boutique House of Organic Paris as the exquisite eco shopping destination, Green in the City.
Beautfully curated, internationally celebrated, and certainly the new 'bijoux-verde' at 7 Rue Mahler. Stay tuned for more details on unique designer collections available at this bright new star clearly visible on Europe's 'fashion with a conscience' radar.
Green in the City in Madame Figaro ~ with special mention of Loup Charmant
*And for those lucky enough to be in the City of Lights today, do not miss this delicious event with AÏNY. Details below.
Congratulations to The Andean Collection for these amazing recent photos by Guru Khalsa. The AC team is currently traveling in Ecuador working with talented local artisans on their upcoming natural materials and fair trade jewelry collection. You can follow their travel and design progress on their blog. Consider giving The Andean Collection's bold designs this holiday season as the ultimate in sustainably chic accessorizing and colorful goodness.
I really love that during my first interview with hipster London-based fashion designer Ada Zanditon she made reference to American football uniforms in relation to her very sculptural Graduate Collection. How fitting that Ada is having a fabulous Sample Sale on Thanksgiving Day in the U.K. I consider her to be the ultimate pilgrim when it comes to eco fashion vision and sustainable style risk-taking. A warm congratulations also to Ada for her recent award with the British Fashion Council’s new Eco Fashion Mentor Programme.
*click on top image for details on the upcoming sample sale coordinates
The much-anticipated Global Sourcing Marketplace (GSM) hosted by the Ethical Fashion Forum (EFF) will be in full-swing this weekend in the U.K. Exhibiting at the event will be ethical garment and textile manufacturers, suppliers of organic and fair-trade cotton, representatives of cooperatives and community groups, eco-colour dye and printing specialists, suppliers to leading retailers, and sustainable designers and pioneering brands. GSM is guaranteed to be a true fashion-forward convergence for all vital links in the ethical sourcing, manufacturing, design, and retail chain.
Vivienne Westwood and Zandra Rhodes (image via edictive)
Dame Viv and Daisy Lowe (image via Treehugger)
The state-of-the art RE:Fashion Awards pieces are being shown exclusively for the first time since they were modeled by Daisy Lowe, Pixie Geldof, Leah Wood, and Leah Weller. There will also be inspiring designer and supplier stories by Ascension & Sewa and Edun Live & Phenix.
I so love these latest graphic expressions by Istanbul-based eco-fashion designers Sena Çevik and Seray Cengiz of BOA Studio. I have been a fan of BOA for quite some time and consider myself to be a neighbor of sorts given all of the time that I now spend in Sofia, Bulgaria. Their latest 'Organic Symphony' collection melds the best of organic 'pamuk' (cotton) with signature doodles and enviro-art whimsy. Each piece is a unique work of art that utilizes the best organic materials as a fashionable canvas.
*If you happen to be in colorful Istanbul this weekend, check out BOA Studio's 'Organic Symphony' Winter 2010 collection and their new project 'Boa Re-cycled' at Babylon Lounge in Istanbul on November 21st/22nd.
What can I say? I am smitten with El Naturalista's eco friendly footwear and their company mission to connect each one of us with a deep-rooted sense of place. Founded as a humble operation in La Rioja (Spain), El Naturalista today has a team of talented designers who travel the globe as 'inspired naturalists' in search of better ways of doing and making things.
I am definitely the type to wear my boots to the very end of their lifespan (and back again), but the latest collection from El Naturalista really got me thinking about where I am really going, what I am doing, and who is alongside me, in both spirit and action. How often does footwear serve as a catalyst for such reflection and awareness?
See for yourself. I cannot make the journey for you. But yes, these boots were made for walking, talking, and examining the footprints we leave behind.
I am not the most militant person when it comes to scrutinizing eco fashion, but there are some definite guidelines that I believe should be upheld when talking about green design and sustainability. On this note, I feel that I have to speak up about VOGUE's November issue featuring a fashion spread called, 'Midnight in the Garden of Good'. The luxe-label layout was intended to highlight the 'subversive' activity of renegade green guerillas and the night-prowling activity of the guerilla gardening movement.
What I do not understand about this story is why the stylist opted to highlight so few eco fashion labels and standout designers? What a missed opportunity to feature green-luxe designs available at chic boutiques like Beklina, Eco Citizen, Green In The City, Kaight, and Trunkshow - to name a few. There were surely wheelbarrow loads to choose from for this hip gardening photo shoot.
Let's keep the green in green while also cultivating educational links with mainstream media. Just a little bit of fashion research goes along way, folks. A Prada Ostrich bag that retails for $4,990 does not make the green cut - at least not in my hood.
Besides an inspiring speakers programme with a variety of guests I&A - Ingrid Horsselenberg & Annouk Post, are organizing the Beyond Green Gallery for the second time. Read more in Hiphonest during the week to come.
It's Friday night, and frankly, I am whooped. A week with the laptop in the shop, a sick toddler, and way too much work to get to. I think that I will cleanse myself by seeing Vermeer at the Met or perhaps be absorbed by a wall ala the photography of Erwin Olaf. When in doubt, a little fantasy always melts the aches and pains. Oh, and Ariel Clay, I am thinking of you!
Remembering Cholas & Chollas (2009) by Sara Hubbs; discarded shoe straps, synthetic hair, and adhesive (27” x 12” x 4 ½”)
This rockin' art fashion innovator will host Partner Play at Callalilai in Brooklyn on Thursday, November 5. Stop by to see Sara's amazing work as well as savor some groovy refreshments and music by DJ Tabu.
Callalilai 296 Atlantic Ave @ Smith Street Brooklyn (Boerum Hill) t. 718.875.1790
Thieves by Sonja den Elzen is a strong and independent collection wth a mix of fine tailoring, soft draping, and clever asymmetry that will easily steal your heart. Designer den Elzen focuses on using only eco friendly fabrics such as organic wool, organic cotton, peace silk, bamboo, tencel and vegetable tanned leather. The Toronto based label is definitely one to watch on the global (eco) fashion scene. I honestly think that Thieves takes the prize for Fall 2009 for the exquisite styling of their auburn-tressed model.