Go Green: Great Eco-Friendly Clothing Lines
Posted by Katie Ostoich on April 17, 2012 at 9:41 AM
I get it, you want to help the environment, but not look like a hippie at the same time. Luckily, some great designers using organic cotton, bamboo, and other green materials are out there, making cute and stylish clothes. In honor of Earth Day, I thought I’d highlight some of our favorite (affordable) eco-friendly clothing lines. Sure we go gaga over House of Organic, and we swoon for Lara Miller, but both remain a tad out of our budget (ok, more than a tad…).
If you’re looking for clothes that are eco-friendly and affordable, check out these great clothing lines:
Jonano produces clothes made of certified organic cotton, bamboo, hemp, as well as their popular ecoKashmere blend – all for an affordable price. In addition, their clothing is made using Fair Labor practices, their fabrics use low-impact dyes, and their packaging and mailings are printed on recycled paper. We love that their homepage lays out the reasons why we should care about organic and eco-friendly clothing. But we especially love their feminine clothing and deliciously soft lingerie.
While Loomstate isn’t exactly inexpensive, they’re reasonably priced and too stylish and versatile not to mention. The Oki dress (I know, certainly not cheap at over 200 beans) can be rotated and reversed for 6 different trendy color-block combinations. Makes the cost worth it. Luckily, for those stealthy shoppers out there (we know you’re out there…) Loomstate deals can be found on such sites as Greenloop and Bluefly.com.
If you’re looking for jeans, Levi Strauss is still the go-to, even when it comes to eco-friendly denim. Not only do they use organic cotton, recycled zippers and buttons, and use natural indigo dye, they also regularly donate money to environmental causes. And since January 2010, Levi’s jeans hit the stores with a new tag, one meant to encourage customers to treat their clothes in an environmentally responsible manner. The tags encourage people to wash items in cold water, dry them on a line, and when no longer needed, donate them to Goodwill. The tags are a result of a study Levi Strauss did on the life of a pair of 501 jeans from a cradle-to-grave life cycle assessment. The study examined the environmental impact of a single pair of 501s — from cotton production and transport exhaust to washer-and-dryer use and final disposal. Smart, huh?
For the basics, American Apparel can’t be beat from a price and usability perspective. Find great basic tees for the whole family (including babies!) in a fit that American Apparel is known for. Retail stores offer the Sustainable Edition clothing with the distinctive green contrast stitching, as well as “store exclusive” organic styles not available online or through wholesale.
While you’re working out, you’re probably not thinking about how green your clothes are, but there are some great eco-friendly fitness duds out there. Check out Hyde for stylish yoga clothes you won’t want to take off. And some of the pieces from Restore are made from recycled coconut shells. Amazing!
For glamour girls out there, H&M just launched a collection of eco-friendly evening wear, called ‘Glamour,’ as part of its ‘Conscious’ clothing line. The conscious collection contains dresses, shorts, blouses and skirts made from sustainable materials such as hemp, organic cotton and recycled polyester. The retailer is also introducing a new ‘Fashion Against Aids’ collection, to hit stores on April 26th; a quarter of all sales go to international youth HIV/AIDS awareness projects. Glamour line is full of satin and neon, but the regular conscious collection stuff is more casual, and cute in a Zooey-Deschanel-meets-Betty-Draper (meets old botany textbook) sort of way.
In terms of footwear, you can’t beat Toms for casual, earth-friendly kicks. The new ballet flats are adorable and could work for office-wear. For heels or nicer options, I like to do a Zappos search for “vegan” or “eco friendly”. Or you can check out online stores that specialize in green footwear, such as Planet Shoes. These wedges are perfect for spring, and while not cheap, are reasonable for quality materials.