By Chere Di Boscio
I must admit: I’ve committing a few sustainable crimes. Namely, I’d see an outfit, fall in love with its cut, drape and style, and just buy it – though it was far from eco-friendly or ethical. Don’t judge – we’ve all been there; we’ve all fallen in love with the gorgeousness of clothing and bought it just because it was so. Incredibly. Gorgeous. And finding something equally delicious that was also ethical and sustainable was pretty much impossible.
But now, there is absolutely no need to compromise on ethics when it comes to style.
Today, there are increasing numbers of ethical fashion designers creating clothing that is totally runway-worthy. I’m talking about style and tailoring that could easily be confused with the likes of Prada, Dior or Armani. Don’t believe me? Just behold the beauty of our favourite sustainable luxury fashion brands of all time, below.
1. Mara Hoffman
Organic cotton. Hemp. Tencel. Linen. Those are but a few of the totally sustainable fabrics this well known designer uses in her work. Once best known for her swimwear, Mara Hoffman is now converting herself into a well-loved, vegan-and-eco-friendly clothing creator.
Best for: The best summer of your life
Recycled materials meet natural ones – and more interestingly, athleisure designs meet high fashion in this young New Zealand born designer’s label. Entirely wearable, youthful and cool pretty much sums up Maggie Marilyn’s bang-on-trend work.
Best for: Seriously chic, highbrow athleisure
Born in South America, VOZ is an ethical fashion company whose mission is to protect the livelihoods, well-being, and cultural values of rural indigenous women globally. Theye pay living wages for every textile and sewn garment, and use only sustainable fibers and dyeing processes.
Best for: A touch of South American elegance
It’s sophisticated and sexy, perfect for weekends away with that special someone. But honestly, this nightwear is just too gorgeous to keep in the boudoir! I’d personally pair a kimono with a pair of jeans and a crop top, but these hand-painted, silk creations are gorgeous enough to even hang on the wall as decor.
Best for: Feeling like a ’40’s film goddess when lounging around at home
A favourite brand with celebrities like Olivia Palermo, Emma Watson and Natalie Portman, Amur’s dresses are chic enough for red carpets and gala events, and yet their separate tops can also be paired with jeans or shorts. GOTS certified natural and regenerated fibres comprise the fabulous fabrics they use, which drape beautifully on the body.
Best for: ‘It’ girl style
6. Eleven Six
This knitwear brand is close to my heart, as it was inspired by a trip the designers took to the Sacred Valley in Peru. Based on Peru’s rich heritage of craftsmanship in textiles, modern knitted separates are created by fairly paid indigenous women in Peru from the finest spun, local alpaca yarn.
Best for: Everyday separates that you can wear for decades
7. St Roche
Dedicated to preserving the planet and its people, St Roche states “environmental and social impacts are equally as important to us as profitability.” They work with carefully selected manufacturing partners in India and Peru who are committed to responsible labor practices, transparency and preserving skilled craftsmanship. Eco-friendly, sustainable fabrics are sourced wherever possible, incorporating GOTS certified organic cotton and low-impact natural fibers into their casually cool collections.
Best for: Super chic casual wear with a twist
No one wants real fur anymore. It’s not just cruel – it’s gauche! So House of Fluff have come to your winter rescue with their shaggy, vegan-friendly furs. They’re so damn chic, we could easily imagine the Queen of Cool, Kate Moss, sporting one of these.
Best for: Rock chick chic
9. Cult Gaia
Lightweight linens and wicker, bamboo and rattan accessories make up the majority of the collections created by Cult Gaia. Designer Jasmin Hekmat says she draws inspiration from vintage pieces and is passionately committed to fair and sustainable practices throughout her production process.
Best for: Bourgeois Bohemians
This hip LA brand admits that the most eco-friendly outfit ever is simply your own gorgeous birthday suit – but if you don’t want to go naked, this brand may be the next best thing, thanks to their use of upcycled deadstock, Tencel, ECONYL and organic cotton! They’re most famous for their slinky wrap dresses, which pretty much suit all body types, but they also do swimwear, jeans and even wedding dresses.
Best for: A bit of California cool in your wardrobe
11. Flor et al
This design-led fashion label counts three minds behind its chic style. Each item is created from sustainable materials including vintage fabrics and upcycled polyester fibres, and Flor et al works with small artisans in India to create the hand beaded floral details seen in some of their collections. They have also partnered with NEST, a non-profit that connects artisans and designers all over the globe.
Best for: High fashion elegance, ethically
Entirely made from recycled materials, this made-to-order label features feminine designs with a keen eye to attention to detail. Bell sleeves, frills, chokers and kimono style tops are but a few of the vintage-styled highlights from this design-led brand.
Best for: 70’s vintage style – for modern times
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