Brooke Lacey is not only a very stylish blogger, she’s a very nice one too, so it comes as no surprise that her eco-friendly fashion blog is called the Friendly Fashionist.
Brooke’s blog aims to make shopping for stylish eco-outfits easier, and offers a host of interesting ideas, from how to put outfits together to suggesting leather alternatives. Whilst we may not agree with some of what she labels ‘eco-friendly’ (i.e. a lot of plastic based ‘vegan leather’) we do love her style, attitude, and above all her, personality, which really shines through in this blogger interview of the week.
Why do you think bloggers are becoming increasingly important in the publishing world?
I think it’s because bloggers are more accessible and more trusted among their readers. They have that “everyman” factor that makes them seem more approachable but still knowledgable, like a normal person, versus a high-powered fashion editor. I think readers also like knowing the personality behind the site, and you just don’t get that kind of interaction from a hard-copy magazine.
Which green fashion labels are currently in your lust-list?
Freedom of Animals, first and foremost! I’ve been dying for Celine’s iconic tote for years, and Freedom of Animals has one similar to it that’s totally animal friendly and eco-friendly. I’m also very into yoga so I’m a big fan of Patagonia workout wear and lululemon. They recently teamed up with an organization called Canopy to create rainforest-friendly products, so I’m super into it and I can’t wait to see how they revise their manufacturing to make their new products!
How do you merge ethical and non-ethical brands in your wardrobe?
Well I don’t purchase non-ethical brands any more, unless I buy them secondhand (whether that’s thrifted or vintage). However, I still have quite a few items that are non-ethical and I just try to work them in with some of my more eco-friendlystuff. Waste in fashion takes a huge toll on the environment so I won’t throw an item away just because it’s not ethical. It’s better to just hang onto it and style it in with some of my more eco items whenever I can!
Do you use any green beauty products?
I use Urban Decay, just because they don’t test on animals and most of their products are vegan. I’m an animal lover so I’m definitely more apt to buy something with the “product not tested on animals” label!
Which new green labels do you see as up and coming?
Not one specific label, but I think we’re going to start seeing more designers implement more eco-friendly initiatives into their manufacturing processes. Or like in some cases now, they’ll design a smaller collection of sustainable items. I think the industry as a whole is really up and coming. Even at London Fashion Week this year, about a third of the designers were eco-conscious in some way, and that’s a pretty substantial increase compared to previous years.
Which is better: buying green, or buying vintage?
I think they’re both equally important in determining the sustainability of an item. Either way, you’re not contributing to global demand for non-ethical products so they’re both fantastic options. Buying vintage is probably easier, more cost-efficient, and more accessible for most people, so that’s the only reason I’d say it’s better. And in most cases you’re also supporting a local business, so right on!
What’s your position on leather? Fur?
I love animals too much to advocate for either! Even though leather and fur are sometimes byproducts of the meat industry, and the material is used instead of discarded, I can’t let go of the cruelty factor. There are so many great substitutes for leather and fur now, so I think it’s better to just choose the animal-friendly route and go faux on both accounts.
Which shopping habits do you think are the most important ones consumers need to change?
The addiction to fast fashion. From a sustainability point of view, the controversy is obvious, and I think consumers need to be more aware of where their clothing comes from and how it’s produced. And also, cheap manufacturing produces a poor-quality product. Don’t get me wrong- I’m all about shopping on a budget, but when you factor in the cost per wear of a well-made item, it far surpasses the value of something you’d get at a fast fashion retailer.
How are you adding to a ‘greener’ world?
I think just by increasing awareness around eco-conscious brands. I try to give people sustainable alternatives to everyday fashion to make it easier. I learned in my fashion PR internships that that if you want people to do something, you have to make it easy for them. I want people to be more eco-concious, so my blog makes it easy by giving eco-friendly alternatives to current fashion trends.