This week, SHOP TALK welcomes guest blogger Malorie Bertrand, editor of Ef Magazine.
When I moved to Ottawa five years ago, I explored the city’s somewhat hidden fashion community, attended Ottawa Fashion Week, and became well-acquainted with shopping districts like Dalhousie Street and Wellington West. To me, the most important aspect of the city’s fashion scene is its budding eco-fashion industry. With EF Magazine, an online publication that promotes sustainable fashion and beauty, I get to showcase some great environmentally friendly designers, stylists, and shops.
So what is sustainable fashion, exactly? Sustainable fashion refers to a part of the fashion industry that incorporates environmental, social, and ethical practices. From heavy-weights such as John Patrick Organic and Stella McCartney to local artists like Duffield Design and N-Product, sustainable fashion is not a separate industry, but rather a growing sector. Sustainable fashion means shopping second hand, consigning from your closet, and buying from shops that bring in environmentally-friendly labels (here in Ottawa we have Green Tree Eco Fashion, terra20, Victoire, and Flock/Workshop).
Indeed, there are so many interpretations of sustainable fashion that the sector continues to evolve, showing the world that eco-fashion isn’t just about hemp skirts and recyclable packaging. Bloggers are a big part of this evolution. They spread the word, share images, and provide styling tips. EF Magazine wouldn’t be where it is without them!
Here are a few of my favourites, from Ottawa and beyond.
ourMode: A friend of mine recently told me about this his-and-hers style blog run by an adorable couple with a true love for fashion. They regularly post pictures of their impeccably styled outfits — and they’re big fans of second-hand. This is your go-to blog for inspiration when your closet isn’t giving you any good ideas.
Chameleonic: Justyna Baraniecki is not your average fashion blogger. She’s expanded her first blog, chichichic, which featured daily posts of her fab vintage outfits, into Chameleonic, a more robust site that includes gorgeous pictures from her latest styling projects with local photographer Joel Bedford.
Tinfoil Tiaras: Style maven Emily Brown, is a staple in Ottawa’s fashion community. Emily has a style that is all her own and isn’t afraid of colour and accessories. She works for Dress for Success, a wonderful organization that supplies underprivileged women with a week’s worth of office-appropriate clothing. All of the clothing is donated by businesses and individuals — clothing recycling at its best!
Kaight: This blog is the product of an independent eco-fashion boutique in New York City of the same name. Kaight works hard to provide consumers with clothing and accessories that are innovative in design, ethically produced, and eco-friendly in nature. It is a rich source from the centre of fashion in the United States.
Magnifeco: This site offers great information on up-and-coming eco-designers and new collections from around the world.
Just as more and more people are embracing organic food, hybrid cars, and natural beauty products, many are realizing that they can make positive changes with their clothing too. It may be run by people who are considered self-involved eccentrics, but it’s a serious industry with a lot of influence on society and the environment.
It’s also one of the most innovative industries, which tells me it is the most well-equipped to adapt new practices and make radical changes. This is an exciting time in fashion and I’m thrilled to be in the thick of it. Stay tuned for more from Ottawa’s emerging eco-fashion scene.