Katie Gannon is the woman behind www.ecofriendly-fashion.com and the green clothing label ‘Mother Maria’, which she sells on her e-commerce site, The Cotton Cloud. The blogger, designer and business woman tells Eluxe about magazines, manufacturing, and mango masks.
Why do you think bloggers are becoming increasingly important in the publishing world?I believe bloggers are great at putting a personal spin on things. They often write straight from the heart, and their opinions are honest and viable. I think consumers appreciate this as many traditional magazine readers are tired of being bombarded with pushy advertising. Blogs are also in real time, which is very important for readers who need to keep up to date.
Which green fashion labels are currently in your lust-list?
I am currently loving the green fashion coming out of Australia and New Zealand (being Australian myself). Monolog and Kowtow are two of my favourites. They both produce in organic cotton and design cutting-edge but wearable garments. I am also very much in love with UK’s Luva Huva. They sent me a cute pair of knickers as a gift for blogging about them, which I adore!
How do you merge ethical and non-ethical brands in you wardrobe?
Most of my wardrobe consists of vintage garments and basics. I love to mix plain t-shirts with vintage skirts, and great jeans with old retro shirts. Of course, many basics are mass produced which is hard to steer away from when purchasing, although I try to buy good quality basics (from brands such as Mesop) which are made well, and I know will last the distance.
Do you use any green beauty products?
I don’t wear a lot of makeup by choice, however most of my cleansers and creams come from Origins and Sukin. I adore both of these products! I also love mixing up my own concoctions from fresh fruit. My favourite is a mango mask in summer. When you are finished eating your mango, rub the wet side of the skin all over your face. Leave to dry then rinse off. It feels amazing!
Which new green labels do you see as up and coming?
Being a designer myself (for the label ‘Mother Maria‘) I have always used up-cycled fabrics. I am a big fan of any labels experimenting with this. I think it is so important that we look towards the future, and stop manufacturing so much. Anything we can up-cycle or recycled is such a big help to the environment. I was recently sent information about a company called Ella Sven who repurpose vintage clothing. I think they are definitely on the right track.
Which is better: buying green, or buying vintage?
For the environment buying vintage is definitely better. Green is great, but still uses a lot of energy to manufacture. As I said before, recycling is definitely the best thing for the environment to cut down our carbon emissions and conserve energy.
What’s your position on leather? Fur?
That is a tricky one. As I don’t believe in factory farming at all (and don’t eat meat) I am not comfortable with the use of animals in any type of industry. Unfortunately, I do own leather shoes however which is very hypocritical as I can’t stand the feeling of synthetic fabric on my feet! I always battle personally with the ethics of this. I discovered a company recently called ‘O My Bag’ who makes bags, sourcing their leather from cows who have died of sickness or old age. I think this is extremely admirable.
Which shopping habits do you think are the most important ones consumers need to change?
I really believe there should be a production process on every tag of every item (much like an ingredients list on food items). Consumers need to know where their goods are coming from and not expect to be able to buy things for so cheap. We all need to be comfortable with buying less, but spending more on items that are of high quality and ethical production. In other words, have a small wardrobe of really amazing things!
How are you adding to a ‘greener’ world?
In my household everything we purchase is sourced from an ethical retailer. We are also trying to grow our own food, compost, and recycle. I started my blog to educate people about the harsh reality of the fashion world. I hope in some way I am making a difference!