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  • The List: A Roundup of Fashion, Films, Restaurants and Hotels To Help You Lead a More Sustainable Lifestyle

    With Fashion Revolution Day celebrated on April 24th around the world, there is an awakening of consumers who want to know what goes inside the products they buy and who makes them. Here at Fashion ComPassion we have the same ethos. So we’ve compiled a list from restaurants, films & fashion to help you become a more conscious consumer.

    1) Fifteen

    Run by Jamie Oliver with an amazing apprentice scheme helping young unemployed people. The success of this restaurant earned it a TV show “Jamie’s Kitchen”, today the restaurant has branched out to Cornwall and Amsterdam. Why not eat happily knowing that you’re helping employ the country's future leaders?

    2) UK Green Film Festival

    Join the UK’s only celebration of environmental films. There will be touring the country from June 1st until 8th. Packed with special guest speakers from around the world from the film and the environmental movements.

    3) Carlton Guldsmeden Hotel

    Enjoy a stay in the worlds greenest city Copenhagen, in the worlds greenest hotel Guldsmeden. Our favourite of the seven Guldsmeden hotels is Carlton Guldsmeden. Complete with 74 spacious rooms with their signature Balinese style.

    4) Sewlomax Lipstick Bag

    This quirky eco conscious bag and it is handmade. A percentage of the sales help underprivileged youth in the UK, Malawi and India with the charity Wings of Hope. Buy it here.

    5) Lo Top By From Somewhere

    This mismatch of rare jersey material looks amazing, be bold and wear this, it would look great with baggy boyfriend jeans.

    6) Krze Studio Bag

    kryze

    Make a bold statement with this IT bag of this season. This bag is vegan and eco friendly. This is the perfect day bag buy it here.

    7) Sherbet Dress By Bhaloshop

    This sherbet dress by Bhalo is a gorgeous pastel colour which is on trend this season, made by Fair Trade organisation, Thanapara Swallows.

    8) Uma In Hot Pink And Nude

    These beautiful Beyond Skin Uma sandals are vintage inspired, which is in this season. Made with 100% vegan leather, Wouldn’t you just feel fabulous strutting in these ethical shoes?

    9) The Upcycle: Beyond Sustainability

    A very interesting read for those of you interested in fashion and sustainability. This book gives practical tips on how you can put sustainable choices in practice. Another big plus, is that the foreword is by Bill Clinton.

  • Guest Blogger of the Month: Recycled Fashion

    Recycled Fashion Logo

    What is the name of your blog?

    Recycled Fashion

    Tells us about your blog and why you started it.

    I write a blog about fashion, but fashion not in the traditional sense. I write about sustainable fashion, which encompasses shopping expeditions in opportunity shops, charity shops, thrift stores, vintage stores, markets, garage sales, car boot sales, online stores and auctions to find recycled fashion wardrobe pieces.

    After the birth of my first son, I enjoyed the change in my life, but do admit to finding the adjustment from full time work to stay at home mother really difficult. I always remember my husband saying to me at this point “you need a hobby” and laughed at him! But, he was right, I did need a creative outlet to focus on. I’d always enjoyed writing, and sourcing second hand fashion, so combined the two together which became my blog; Recycled Fashion.

    Why is sustainable fashion so important?

    Fashion can be damaging to the environment, from the dyes and chemicals used in the process, through to the waste generated by our throwaway nature of cheaply produced ‘on trend’ clothes.

    By choosing sustainable fashion, we are kinder to our planet, and to the people that make our clothes.

    How would you describe your style / fashion sense?

    Eclectic, I wouldn’t really say I have a style, anything goes, but I don’t like to follow trends.

    Who do you admire in the world of sustainable fashion?

    I think Vivienne Westwood is doing well to fly the sustainable fashion flag.

    What are your favourite ethical brands and why?

    Because I favour recycled fashion, I tend to prefer brands that repurpose existing fabric, such as Junky Styling and Queenie & Ted.

    What are your top tips for buying ethical and sustainable products?

    I always say to choose recycled before buying new as a priority, otherwise to I’d say when choosing a new garment to buy, do a little bit of research behind the brand first, and make sure you are happy with their ethics before parting with your hard earned cash.

    What are your plans for the future?

    Part of my blog writing involves refashioning op shop clothes into new styled pieces. However, I've got to the stage now where I don't really need that many clothes for my own wardrobe. I am in the process of linking up to op shops (charity shops) close to my home, take damaged or un-wearable clothes and refashion them into new stylish pieces. I plan to document how I did so on my blog, then donate back to the op shop for resale.

    What are your 3 top picks of the Fashion Compassion website?

    Erica’s 3 top picks from Fashion ComPassion’s website – Bhalo’s Scarecrow Trousers (£90), Sarah's Bag Classic Posters Clutch (£92) and Bhalo's Pocket Skirt (£80). Erica’s 3 top picks from Fashion ComPassion’s website – Bhalo’s Scarecrow Trousers (£90), Sarah's Bag Classic Posters Clutch (£92) and Bhalo's Pocket Skirt (£80).

    Check out Erica's Recycled Fashion blog here.

    Erica is also on Facebook and Twitter.

  • Guest Blogger of the Month: Adore, Reflect, Sustain

    Emma Waight from Adore, Reflect, SustainWhat is the name of your blog?

    Adore, Reflect, Sustain

    Tells us about your blog and why you started it.

    I started my blog Adore, Reflect, Sustain more than 3 years ago because I was studying for a research-based Masters in ethical fashion and I wanted a space to promote ethical fashion and also have an online presence for when I started looking for jobs. It changed direction a little once I started my PhD so this year I also launched ethicalhighstreet.co.uk as a space to promote everyday ethical shopping choices, not just in fashion but for the high street as a whole.

    Why is sustainable fashion so important?

    I do see a slight distinction between ethical fashion and sustainable fashion. Sustainable fashion is slow fashion, kind to planet and people. The problem with fast fashion is that we have lost an understanding of how clothing is made, it’s so easily accessible and cheap; we’ve almost lost respect for the process. The way it stands the fashion industry just can’t be sustainable. Sustainable fashion is important because it puts the love back into clothing so we buy fewer but better quality clothes, making our environmental footprint as low as possible.

    How would you describe your style / fashion sense?

    Increasingly eclectic! I like to look feminine but I don’t think I can get away with some of the super girly clothes I wore a few years ago. I love vintage clothes and the traditional English heritage look. At the moment I wear a lot of skinny jeans and skirts with baggy sweaters.

    Who do you admire in the world of sustainable fashion?

    I love Lily Cole because she has used her incredibly prominent place in the fashion industry to promote ethical fashion through the Environmental Justice Foundation and also through her own sustainable fashion brand The North Circular. There are lots of amazing people who have dedicated their life and career to changing things in the industry.

    What are your favourite ethical brands and why?

    People Tree is an all-time favourite. They have got a lot more fashion-conscious over the last few years and they always have some stunning dresses and great quality too. Locally to me in Southampton, WhoMadeYourPants? manufacture and sell gorgeous underwear with a great story at its heart – they offer jobs to local marginalised women who might otherwise struggle to get jobs because they have a low level of English or lack British qualifications.

    What are your top tips for buying ethical and sustainable products?

    There are so many wonderful, ethical brands out there you just have to go and look for them. Buy classic pieces which won’t date and don’t be afraid of new fabrics like bamboo or milk fibre. I don’t think you have to boycott the big brands, just make sure you buy their ethical/sustainable products (most of the big names offer organic or Fairtrade cotton t-shirts for example) to show that there is consumer demand.

    What are your plans for the future?

    I am writing up my PhD on second-hand consumption at the moment. Adore, Reflect, Sustain will continue to be my personal blog but I want to grow Ethical High Street into a bigger and better resource for shoppers.

    What are your 3 top picks of the Fashion Compassion website?

    Emma’s 3 top picks from Fashion ComPassion’s website – Burqa’s Silk Ikat Cocktail Dress (£165), Bhalo’s Cloudgazer Skirt (£80) and GUNAS’s Admiral Baguette Clutch (£260). Emma’s 3 top picks from Fashion ComPassion’s website – Burqa’s Silk Ikat Cocktail Dress (£165), Bhalo’s Cloudgazer Skirt (£80) and GUNAS’s Admiral Baguette Clutch (£260).

    For my top picks I've choosen; the Burqa's Silk Ikat Cocktail dress, for its sexy shape and gorgeous colour, the Bhalo's Cloudgazer skirt, as I'm loving long skirts at the moment, and GUNAS’s Admiral Baguette Clutch. I always worry about anything very embellished (not knowing who has sewn on all those sequins) so it’s great to find a beautiful alternative to put my conscience at ease.

    Check out Emma’s Adore, Reflect, Sustain blog here and ethicalhighstreet.co.uk here.

    Emma is also on Twitter.

  • SUMMER SALE - 30 - 50% Off Clothes, Clutches & Scarves!‏

    It's time for Fashion ComPassion's Summer Sale! Shop for trendy socially responsible clothing and accessories at massive discounts!

    50% Off on Bhalo's Collection

    30% Off Lost City Scarves

    50% Off Lost City Clutches

    Visit the Fashion Compassion website for more information!

  • Guest Blogger of the Month: Just Rach

    Rachael Cocking from JustRach

    What is the name of your blog?

    Just Rach

    Tells us about your blog and why you started it.

    My blog has gone through quite a few names and styles over the years, and it has transitioned slowly into what it is today; Just Rach. I think it began in my second year of university, as a sort of online diary and over the last four years it morphed into a fashion, beauty, lifestyle and occasional geekery blog. I've always been passionate about reading and writing, but uni work put a dent in the number of books I could devour without feeling guilty that I should be reading academic pieces instead. It's always been a dream of mine to become an author one day, but I don't know if I'd have the time, commitment or imagination to accomplish this - in a way my blog is like the book I'll never write; a long and intricate autobiography of my own life. That's why I've finally settled on the name Just Rach, because everything you get on my blog is simply just me :)

    Why is sustainable fashion so important?

    While I don't really ever write about sustainable fashion, I do love to promote sustainable brands that I sometimes come across. I am relatively passionate about sustainable living and my ultimate aim is to live a life that is 100% green. To me this would mean sustainable fashion, eco-friendly beauty products and sensible eating habits. I often have day dreams about living in a sustainable wood home, powered entirely by ground source heating, wind and solar generators! I'm all about planning for the future, I love to think about and imagine what life will be like for the generations ahead of mine. I don't want to leave this world knowing that I didn't do everything within my power to ensure that those surviving me live on a planet that they're proud to call home.

    How would you describe your style / fashion sense?

    I think I'd have to say I'm a relatively classic dresser. I don't particularly follow the main fashion trends, I'm more likely to stick with what I know, love and what catches my eye. (Although, my favourite tee is a blue superman one - so I do occasionally give in to the little kid inside of me!) I gravitate towards pieces that I know will form staples in my wardrobe and will last me years - I'm not a huge fan of the season-to-season throw away fashion that seems to be the favour of the high street stores over the last couple of years. I love flattering cuts, sweetheart necklines, classy dresses, shirts, skinny jeans and any cute pair of flat shoes. I seem to have a never ending collection of coats, I think a good coat is so important - I've had most of my coats for a few years now and I can't imagine passing them on any time soon. I also have a bit of a shoe obsession - a girl never can have enough shoes, there's always the perfect pair for any outfit. I'm happy to spend more on a quality piece if I know it will last me a long time.

    Who do you admire in the world of fashion?

    This is a tough question, because I don't really admire anyone specifically. I think I'm always quite in awe of those who really push the boundaries of fashion. Those who aren't afraid to try something really out-there. I'd never have the confidence or fashion-savvy to try something that I'm not 100% comfortable about wearing.

    What are your favourite brands and why?

    Although the majority of my favourite clothes come from shops like Zara, Mango, H&M, Jack Wills, Hollister and Henry Hunt - my ultimate favourite places to browse and shop are online boutiques, etsy shops and bloggers wardrobe clear-out sales. I love the idea of finding one-off quirky pieces from indie sellers and blog sales are so great for recreating the style of your favourite fashion bloggers.

    What are your top tips for buying fashion products?

    For me, the most important advice I could give would be to avoid throw away fashion trends and to pick classic, timeless pieces that you know you'll be wearing for years. Think about your choices more carefully - do you really love that neon pink and yellow zebra striped cat-suit? Or is it something you'll wear once because you saw your favourite celebrity in it, and then it'll be confined the the depths of your wardrobe for years to come?

    What are your plans for the future?

    Akin to my opinion on the importance of being sustainable, I'm driven by what the world will be like for future generations in other ways too. My ultimate passion and dream job (aside from astronaut, video-gamer designer (or beta-tester) and professional blogger) is to become a teacher. Specifically a primary school teacher. I think it's so important that, as well as academics, kids learn good morals, the difference between right and wrong, and a fiery passion for learning and reading - this is what I hope to achieve as a teacher. Perhaps I'm expecting too much? But, as long as just one student looks back and can say that I was inspiring to them, I'll be happy in the knowledge that I've accomplished my ultimate life goal. As far as Just Rach goes - I hope I'll be blogging away until I'm old and grey, documenting every little twist and turn that comes my way.

    What are your 3 top picks of the Fashion Compassion website?

    I think this is my favourite question of them all! I took such a long time choosing just 3 picks, there are so many beautiful pieces! In the end I settled on the Bhalo Pineapple Dress, the Bhalo Streamer Skirt  and the Sougha Moon Clutch!

    Rachael's 3 top picks from Fashion ComPassion’s website - Bhalo Pineapple Dress (£80), Bhalo Streamer Skirt (£110) and Sougha Moon Clutch ( £155) . Rachael's 3 top picks from Fashion ComPassion’s website - Bhalo Pineapple Dress (£80), Bhalo Streamer Skirt (£110) and Sougha Moon Clutch (£155).

    Check out Rachael’s ‘Just Rach’ blog here.

    Rachael is also on Twitter - @JustRachBlog and on Facebook

  • Guest Blogger of the Month: Sadie's Wardrobe

    Sadie from Sadie's WardrobeWhat is the name of your blog?

    Sadie's Wardrobe

    Tells us about your blog and why you started it.

    I started my blog way back in April 2009, when I was just starting to get interested in fashion. I had been reading a lot of other blogs at the time and really wanted to make one of my own! It’s a good ‘creative’ outlet, where I often feature little DIYs and sewing projects. I recently ‘rebranded’ it as an ethical blog, although it has always featured lot of vintage & thrifted items.

    Why is sustainable fashion so important?

    Fast fashion is very much the norm, and I really didn’t think twice about it before I read Lucy Siegle’s book ‘To Die For’. For me, the importance of sustainable fashion is definitely something that needed pointing out. Since reading the book, I just don’t think I can go back to buying cheap disposable clothes. The way I see it is that in a world of finite resources and growing population, we really can’t afford to keep producing clothing at the rate we do. At the same time, fashion is such an important cultural symbol. So I think the best solution at the moment is to make it as sustainable as possible.

    How would you describe your style / fashion sense?

    I’m not really sure how I’d describe my fashion sense! I tend to wear a lot of bright colours and 70s blouses, and I’d say I’m very influenced by 60s mod style. But since moving to Paris, a lot more grey and 'texture' has been creeping into my wardrobe.

    Who do you admire in the world of sustainable fashion?

    Anyone who has decided that they want to do something about sustainability issues and managed to achieve it, no matter how big or small!

    What are your favourite ethical brands and why?

    The first ethical brand I really became aware of was People Tree, and they are still one of my favourites. I love that they are able to produce clothes that are ethical but still fashionable (and affordable!). I’m discovering new brands every day, which is really really encouraging. Sites like Fashion Compassion are really useful for discovering new brands!

    What are your top tips for buying ethical and sustainable products?

    My top tip for buying ethical and sustainable products is to look for companies whose philosophy is based around being ethical, and that way you know it is genuinely important to them. It’s also good to buy second hand, as this has very little environmental impact, but I try to remember to support the ethical companies too, or they can’t continue to exist!

    What are your 3 top picks of the Fashion Compassion website?

    Sadie's 3 top picks from Fashion ComPassion's website! Sadie's 3 top picks from Fashion ComPassion's website - Pineapple dress (£80), Saturday shirt (£65) & Pocket skirt (£80).

    I really love the 50s-style Pineapple summer dress by Bhalo. Wouldn’t mind one for a holiday wardrobe! The pastel coloured panels on the Bhalo Pocket skirt give it a really cool twist. I love the fact that it has hand-made coconut buttons! For lovers of mod fashion such as myself, this Bhalo Saturday shirt is perfect. Again, I’m a big fan of the contrasting pastel-coloured sections!

    Sadie Wardrobe is also on twitter: @sadieswardrobe

  • Global Gifts that Give back!

    Are you looking for a meaningful Christmas gift for your loved one? For this Holiday season, shop on Fashion ComPassion for Global Gifts that Give back; whether looking for a socially responsible gift or an Eco-friendly one, we have what you want!

    SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE GIFTS

    Vivacious clutches by Nawa (£ 190)

    Nawa Jean BagInspired by Jean Shrimpton, a British fashion icon in the 1960’s, these hand-crafted clutches are created with a mixture of Nappa leather and textured water snake leather in vibrant colours (available in black & green).

    Working with women in under priviledged areas susch as Palestinian refugees’ camps in Lebanon, Nawa is a social fashion label with dual purpose: satisfy the highest standards of the customer and be a small engine for social change. All net profits from the sale of the products are channeled 50% back into the community and 50% to support UN Food Programme

    Casual but chic T-shirt by Palestyle (£ 55)

    Palestyle grey hear t-shirt100% cotton t-shirt embroidered by Palestinian refugee women. Perfect for those casual days when you want to dress down but still look chic!

     Wow them with this piece of art by Palestyle (£ 110) Palestyle necklaceWear an initial of your name or the name of your loved one in a statement necklace that has a wow factor and holds a personal meaning. The glam necklace is available in different letters, gold plated, embellished with Swarovski crystals and can be worn on a trendy choker.

    Palestyle fuses the traditional Arabic heritage with contemporary fashion to create trendy and chic collections. The brand empowers women in Palestinian refugees’ camps in Jordon and Lebanon, by giving them a sustainable income and percentage of revenue from sales.

    Inspirational Scarves by Lost City (£ 100 & £ 115)

    Lost city scarf100% cotton scarf with words COME CLOSER hand embroidered on both ends of the scarf, created by artisans in Lucknow.

    Lost City scarf

    100% cotton scarf with gold and silver metallic sequins densely hand embroidered in a zig-zag pattern inspired by David Bowie's "Aladdin Sane" album cover. The pattern is repeated in three blocks on the scarf.

    The Clash Clutch by Lost City (£ 100)

    Lost city clutchThis exquisite Clash Clutch is inspired by British punk rock band, The Clash. It has gold metallic sequins densely hand embroidered with steel safety pins using a hooked needle.

    New York based design house, Lost City employs artisans in Lucknow, India, who have lost their livelihood due to mass production. Paid fairly on a weekly basis with a yearly bonus, the artisans are also provided with a health care plan and access to education for them and their families as well.

    Shinning in the shiny shawls by Numa (£ 65) Numa shawlBeautiful organic cotton shawls, woven in traditional "métiers" with tassles by women artisans in Tunisia. The shawls come in various colours and various woven Tunisian motifs.

    Numa employs women artisans who specialize in traditional and exquisite Tunisian craft which is now going obsolete due to mass market production. The brand brought value to the work of the women artisans by providing them with sustainable revenue and a market to sell their creations.

    Baraka Sindoor to adorn the neck by Inaaya (£ 40) Baraka Sindoor Inaaya necklaceThis exquisite hand crafted necklace is a solid red 7 layer vibrant vermillion with a two way necklace with silver accents and a peacock fastener.

    Inaaya means Empathy, the capacity to recognize and share the feelings of others.  This Pakistani Ethical fashion brand produces limited run pieces by combining classis techniques with artisanal production. Inaaya works with women artisans in Khaipur, Sindh & helps to bring a positive change in their lives by providing them with jobs and income & further instills confidence and self-belief in them.  

    ECO - FRIENDLY GIFTS

    Bag to make you feel…Special by Gunas (£ 130) Gunas tulip bagA perfect year round arm candy, this bag is 100% sweatshop free. The structured body allows for the bag to stand when set down and also lets you easily find everything inside the bag.

    Colour to brighten your style by Gunas (£ 85) Gunas Emma MiniThe Emma Mini in tropical green and studded details is your perfect companion for a day out. Sling it as a cross-body or on your shoulder with the adjustable strap.

    Gunas is an exclusive, progressive luxury brand that proves that being green and looking haute is not mutually exclusive. These vegan bags are created by skilled artisans under good working conditions and fair pay, using eco-friendly materials.  

    Stand out in this Shipbreaker Dress by Bhalo (£ 90) Bhalo shipbreaker dressTruly stunning silk dress 100% hand woven and hand printed with small shell button and back reveal. Easy to wear, loose style with optional tie waist!

    Bhalo (the Bengali word for ‘good’) is an ecofriendly label that designs limited edition women’s clothing and accessories, made from ethically hand woven and naturally dyed cottons and silks. Focused on honourable working conditions and community development, Bhalo works with local women, widows and indigenous communities in rural Bangladesh.

  • Meet The Women Behind Our Ethical Brand Bhalo

    We know you love our brand Bhalo and their trendy collection, but we thought why not introduce you to the women who help create the brand...from the designer Jessica Priemus to the women artisans that work to create the brand!  Bhalo  is a fair trade design label that aims to create desirable fashion whilst empowering disadvantaged people, especially women, allowing them to work their way out of poverty.

    The cotton is hand loomed and hand embroidered by women in rural Bangladesh, not only giving them much needed employment and training, but providing them with simple things that we take for granted - education/childcare for their children, basic healthcare, and most of all, dignity. Fashion ComPassion and Bhalo opposes human exploitation and feel everyone should be given the right to fair employment terms, and given a decent price for their work, Would you expect the same?

    Jess With Children At Napara Swallows

     

    Noity- An expert in embroidery, she is a Garo (tribal) woman from Mymensingh

     

    Lovely- she manages all the wax printing and dyeing of silk. From the Christian minority in Bangladesh

     

    Liberation Widow:  A widow from the Liberation War has been working with Thanapara Swallows since 1972

     

    Tailoring the Pineapple Dress

     

    Children at Day Care

     

  • What's Fashion ComPassion!?

    Fashion ComPassion is a unique online store that offers high end fashion that is exclusive and hand crafted especially for you. Actually its more than that!! Its high end fashion that is both ethical and socially conscious!

    Fashion ComPassion works with social enterprises from the developing world that empower women, develop communities and alleviate poverty. Our brands Bhalo, Beshtar, Lost City and Palestyle are working towards enriching the lives of women artisans by providing them with jobs, paying them fairly, enhancing their creative skills and giving a percentage of the profits in the company and hence instilling a sense of worth and purpose in the women.

    Since its launch in November 2010, Fashion ComPassion has gained momentum rapidly both in the UK and internationally. You will be hearing lots of exciting news about us in the near future, so keep visiting our website, spread our news and write to us with your comments and feedback.

    XOXO
    Fashion ComPassion

    PS: We hope you love our new and improved website and had a browse of our online store!

    The Brands We Work With...
    Besthar’s stunning Green and Yellow Burqa Dresses!

    Afghan girls in a classroom in Kabul by Afghan Women Education Centre (AWEC). Besthar's give the profits from the collection to AWEC and various other charities that support Afghan women and children.

    Bhalo's Pineapple Dress

    Jessica Premius, Co- Founder and Designer of Bhalo working with a women artisan from one of the Fair Trade Organizations, Thanapara Swallows that Bhalo works with.

    Lost City: Silver Sequin Scarf

    Renu, one of the artisans employed by Lost City in Lucknow, India is making a scarf.

    Palestyle: Velvet Hand-Embroidered Pouch
    Quote by Amal Al Habab, Founder of the Al Amal Society which Palestyle works with in Jordan,

    "Today 42 ladies work on Palestyle's different embroidery projects. Such type of work does not only add value financially to those women or us, as an organization, but importantly allows us to train the women to work as a team in production of designs, this team spirit raises their positivity, & allows the women to escape from the demanding cycle of their household to a bigger world".

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