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Plus-Size Ethical Fashion, Privilege & Shopping Better | Q&A

By February 16, 2018 Ethical

A while ago, I answered some of your questions about ethical fashion in a simple, almost Agony Aunt style post. It went down well, so I’m back, helping simplify and break down some of your concerns and quandaries based around the idea of ethical and sustainable fashion. Hit it!

Plus Size Ethical Fashion and Discussing If Sustainability Is a Privilege


WHAT I WORE: Floral Blouse (ASOS Africa – old) // Floral Trousers (ASOS Africa – old) // Keep On Asking Sweatshirt (Lost Shapes x Tolly Dolly Posh) // Sleeveless Denim Jacket (Jumble Sale & DIY) // Sunglasses (Unknown)


How can I find body inclusive, plus-size, ethical fashion on a budget?

Firstly in answer to your question, I want to apologise for the fact that I don’t tend to cover plus-size fashion. This is simply because I’m personally not plus-size so for my own style, it’s not something that I need to focus on. However, I understand how important it is to be inclusive and appreciate all body shapes and sizes.

Admittedly, ethical fashion brands do seem to be rather size exclusive, although they can be far more diverse in other areas compared to fast-fashion or unethically focused brands.

My knowledge of ethical plus-size brands is small so I took a brief moment to do some research and the first brands I came across were all fairly highly priced.

It led me to an article by EcoCult which in the end, also came to the same conclusion, explaining part of the problem to be that due to ethical and sustainable brands usually being on the smaller scale of business, it creates an added cost to produce plus-sizes (new patterns need designing) which in turn puts the price up for customers.

This is ultimately a little unfair – nobody should be paying more for fairly made clothes simply because of their size – so, if you’re struggling to find good examples, don’t be too hard on yourself.

As always, a really good option for finding new (to you) clothes is going second-hand shopping, whether that’s online (eBay, Depop, Oxfam* etc) or offline (charity and thrift shops, garage sales and car boot sales etc).

However, depending on your size, some of my favourite brands like People Tree do go up to sizes like UK 16. I think it’s just the case of spending your time researching and working out what’s best for you.

(I know there are issues surrounding Oxfam right now but I use them as an example as they have a great online charity shop and I appreciate the work they are doing in making second-hand shopping more appealing.)

Plus Size Ethical Fashion and Discussing If Sustainability Is a Privilege

How do I get into the habit of paying attention to the kinds of clothes I buy?

This is an interesting question because for me, once I became educated about the ethical issues around fast-fashion or the issues around sustainability when it comes to our clothes, I started to watch out for what I was buying almost instantaneously. The fact that you’re even asking the question makes me believe you’re on the right path already.

You can almost go at it by using the rules of writing (the 5 W’s and 1 H). Ask yourself 6 simple questions…

  • Who made it?
  • What’s it made of? (Try and stick to natural fabrics like cotton, if you can)
  • Where was it made? (Can you find information about the supplier? ‘Made in’ labels don’t mean much)
  • When will you wear it? (Can you see yourself wearing it 30 times or more?)
  • Why are you buying it? (Is it an impulse purchase?)
  • How could you find an alternative? (Is it something you know would be readily available second-hand?)

You might only ask yourself one or two of these questions at a time, and some of them might never apply but having them in the back of your mind, especially when shopping on the high-street or from a brand which has an unclear ethical stance, can help you make much more considered choices. Remember, it will always be about shopping less when you can’t shop better.

What are some independent ethical brands?

Have you taken a look at my ethical directory, yet? It’s full of them! Some of my favourite true indie brands are Lucy & Yak (they do wonderful corduroy dungarees), Lost Shapes (did you know I designed the sweatshirt in this post for them?), Vintage Style Me (all handmade in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire) and What Daisy Did (they use scrap post-production leather to make their dreamy handbags).

Plus Size Ethical Fashion and Discussing If Sustainability Is a Privilege

Is sustainable living, a matter of privilege? 

This is a topic which has been floating around the sustainable-sphere rather a lot lately, mainly due to some recent controversy around a statement made by a well known, waste-free brand.

I’m going to lay out my current thoughts plain and simple. They’re open to evolution, criticism and hopefully mutual-understanding. For me, I don’t see thinking sustainably as being a privilege but the physical action of, for example, using and buying less single-use plastic or supporting ethical fashion brands, as yes, a privilege that not everyone has the ability of participating in.

I’m being very selective in my choice of wording here as I don’t want to imply that thinking sustainably isn’t a privilege for everyone. If I were to say everyone, I would really be suggesting the target-audience of my blog and anyone who stumbles across my share of the web in the future.

So, to explain my thoughts more accurately, let’s use you and me as an example. Just you and me, the singular person reading this text. I believe you are capable of thinking sustainably.

Plus Size Ethical Fashion and Discussing If Sustainability Is a Privilege

Whether you are like me, a teen, with very little money in the bank or whether you are a mother of two young children, I know that you have the capability of changing your mindset (at this point really, my blog may as well be renamed Tolly Dolly Mindset for the number of times I come back to that word).

Here, I am not implying that you physically have the capability of adapting your life to this mindset – I can’t know whether that is true or not, there are far too many variables -, simply, I believe you have the good-heart of somebody who knows the world needs to make significant changes to become a healthier and better place.

With that good-heart comes the ability to walk down a supermarket aisle and understand where we’re – humans; the system – going wrong. With this new found (or hopefully, years old) mindset, you’ll see plastic as something to be wary of and perhaps you’ll take time to really treasure whatever new dress you next buy.

That, I cannot see as a privilege. Perhaps time and education have to come beforehand and maybe that’s where my conclusion fails at the wayside; I’m again, happy to be proven wrong.

Anyone who jumps to the idea and exclaims that there is nothing getting in the way of anyone implementing sustainable and ethical practices is simply well, ignorant. As I recently tweeted, it’s vital to never assume that everyone has the ability to take actions and to understand that really, there are much bigger issues at hand.

As much as I hate to admit it, individual change and consumerism are only a minuscule part of the problem. 


Do you have any questions for me to answer next time? Leave them in a comment below or click here to fill out the Q&A form.

  Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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What’s the Difference Between Ethical and Sustainable Fashion?

By January 31, 2018 Ethical

This blog post is extremely overdue. I understand that for those who are new to the concept of ethics and sustainability, understanding the differences between the two terms can be difficult – there’s even the question as to whether there even is a difference. Although this dilemma can be subjective, here’s how I define the two…

Difference Between Ethical and Sustainable Fashion

Difference Between Ethical and Sustainable Fashion


ETHICAL FASHION
Related Terms: Fairtrade, Fair Fashion, Cruelty-Free


Ethical
adjective
1. relating to moral principles or the branch of knowledge dealing with these.
Synonyms: moral

Ethics
noun
1. moral principles that govern a person’s behaviour or the conducting of an activity.
Synonyms: moral code, morals, morality, moral stand, moral principles, moral values, rights and wrongs, principles, ideals

 

Ethical fashion is fashion that takes into account the morals of manufacturing. Ethical fashion is generally fashion and clothing produced with the whole production line and supply chain in mind, from cotton pickers to those who seal up, package and deliver. The belief that all workers and those affected by the production of garments should be treated equally and fairly, is the common mindset behind most ethical fashion brands.

The providing of a safe working condition, a living wage and a kind and non-abusive work environment are the usual priorities of those producing ethical alternatives to the likes of fast-fashion.

Ethical fashion avoids the use of forced, slave and child labour throughout the manufacturing process and organisations like Fairtrade International are able to help brands and companies to label and guarantee that safe and ethical practices are being put into place. Often brands don’t just ensure ethical practices but they also support and improve the livelihood of the workers they employ, especially those of which are in developing countries.

Ethical fashion can also be a term to cover cruelty-free and vegan practices, meaning that no animals are harmed or used as part of the production of clothing. An example of a vegan fabric is Peace Silk; Peace Silk is produced from moth cocoons after the moths have emerged and flown away, therefore it does not disturb or kill the moths in order to be woven into fabric.

Difference Between Ethical and Sustainable Fashion

Difference Between Ethical and Sustainable Fashion


SUSTAINABLE FASHION
Related Terms: Slow Fashion, Eco Fashion, Eco-friendly, Green Fashion, Organic, Recycled, Upcycled, Second-hand, Vintage


Sustainable
adjective
1. able to be maintained at a certain rate or level.
2. able to be upheld or defended.
Synonyms: viable, unceasing, imperishable, renewable, unending

Sustainability
noun
1. the ability to be maintained at a certain rate or level.
2. avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance.
Synonyms:

 

Sustainable fashion is fashion and clothing produced to last and with the environmental costs of production, in mind. Seeing as fashion is the second most polluting industry in the world, sustainable fashion aims to cut down on pollution and the negative consequences fashion production has on the earth.

Not only does sustainable fashion recognise things like pollution (whether that be into the water systems, the atmosphere or the ecosystem), it also recognises the dangers of the fast-fashion business model. Sustainable fashion brands often provide less choice, choosing to focus on quality rather than quantity, making the supply chain as eco-friendly as possible. This is also known as ‘slow fashion’.

Sustainable fashion brands often use organic fabrics, avoiding the use of pesticides and synthetic materials which have a damaging effect on the environment (as well as those who live nearby to farms and factories). Organic and natural fabrics (like cotton or bamboo) are biodegradable, which means they won’t cause as much as an issue when it comes to disposing of them.

Second-hand and vintage clothing is also considered to be a part of sustainable fashion as it is a form of recycling, meaning the consumer isn’t supporting the production of new clothing.

Difference Between Ethical and Sustainable Fashion

Often both terms get combined – ethical and sustainable fashion – simply because both go hand and hand. Although certain brands often focus on one or the other more prominently, most of the time you will find that those who believe in ethics also believe in sustainability and vice versa. 

There are certain things to be aware of though, like greenwashing, for example. These terms shouldn’t be thrown around lightly for the sake of it. I wrote all about greenwashing here, so for a more in-depth look at the issue, go and take a read. However, the main takeaway is that with ethical and sustainable brands, for the most part, they will fly the ethical or sustainable flag proudly.

One way I differentiate a brand from being ethically or sustainably focused as to not, is by taking note of how openly they discuss the issues at hand. If for the most part, ethics or sustainability doesn’t seem to be their main priority, you can use that to make your decision as to whether to support them or not.


Clothing featured: Mayamiko (ethical), People Tree (ethical/sustainable), vintage Skirt (sustainable) and upcycled DIY jacket (sustainable).


Has cleared things up for you? Do you have any more questions? Leave them in the comments below…

  Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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Calling out Hypocrisy Won’t Get Us Anywhere

By January 15, 2018 DIY & Lifestyle, Ethical

🎆🎉 Longtime no-write, huh? Happy New Year to all, even if it’s a little late to celebrate. 🎆🎉


Recently, I saw a tweet which was in regards to a cutting down on single-use plastics. The tweeter was on a flight when she used her Ecoffee cup (a reusable and biodegradable bamboo coffee cup that you can use in replace of throw-away options given out in public) and she wanted to praise the airline for allowing her to do so. However, the point that she was on a plane was highlighted and that became the major issue and talking point.

Fighting Against Single-Use Plastic and Hoping for a Better Future

My initial thought was that I could relate. For Christmas, I received an identical Ecoffee cup and I was undeniably excited about the prospect that I could now take it with me and be an example to others when I go to buy my next hot chocolate (I don’t drink coffee, ironically).

In fact, I even contemplated keeping it in my hand luggage when I, myself, took a flight after Christmas because I knew I would be faced with the same issue once I’d boarded the plane. I wanted an overly-priced cup of tea after a long day of travelling but do I really need to receive a cup with a plastic lid on it, in order to enjoy it? (As well another plastic cup I was given to keep my plastic milk sachets in – @Ryanair; what’s that all about?)

I didn’t use my cup mainly because I’m unsure of the regulations regarding them with the airlines I use (they still count as a liquid container over 100ml, right?) but the thought was still there, nagging at me.

Fighting Against Single-Use Plastic and Hoping for a Better Future

It seems that 2018 finds us in a, fortunately, very conscious and understanding time when it comes to our relationship with plastic. It’s still a major issue and once you open your eyes and walk around a supermarket, the idea of plastic ever going anyway anytime soon seems like an impossible feat.

Although Scotland may have just banned the use of plastic cotton buds (Q-Tips) and although the UK has now abolished the usage of microbeads, we still have Marks & Spencer selling slices of cauliflower as ‘Cauliflower Steaks’ boxed in, you guessed it, more plastic – it’s my understanding these ‘steaks’ are to be removed from stores but the point still stands.

More and more of us are starting to realise how toxic and unhealthy our relationship is with plastic and more and more of us are at least, attempting to make changes. Yet, according to the experts who responded to the tweet I used as an example – what good is a reusable coffee cup doing if you’re still using and drinking from it on a plane?

Fighting Against Single-Use Plastic and Hoping for a Better Future

Their point is valid and I agree with the argument from a certain perspective but following on from that, I could respond with another question – what good is pointing out the hypocrisy in front of you, if at least something is being done? In this instance, it’s safe to say that air travel isn’t about to be eradicated.

Anyone in their right mind would prefer if it flying was a more eco-friendly form of getting from A to B but often, travelling in the sky is the only realistic option. (May I also remind you that the fashion industry is more polluting than the whole of aviation put together.) So, if we as travellers can then try and make our experience on board more sustainable, why not?

I later discovered that the tweeter was in the field of plastics and its effects on the environment and that those responding to her were likely criticising the irony of the fact she was using this mode of transport to do a job to fix issues that are caused by it… but this isn’t the only place I’ve seen hypocrisy being called out. It’s everywhere and I even have personal experience.

Especially when it comes to being an ‘influencer’ or somebody with an audience that now expects me to approach and tackle these sorts of topics, it can be extremely difficult to be open and honest when it comes to my own hypocrisies.

What am I doing which goes against another? What am I saying yet not doing simultaneously?

Fighting Against Single-Use Plastic and Hoping for a Better Future

There are lots of things I could list and I’m unashamed to share some of them…

😱 I talk about leading a life that is as sustainable as it can be yet I’m nowhere near living a plastic or waste-free lifestyle.

🤐 I understand the disastrous effects of fast-fashion on the environment yet I continue to eat meat which also pollutes the world we live in (and in the past, I’ve had followers feel comfortable enough to point that out directly, after posting a picture of a Five Guys meal on my social media – I’d just been through an extremely traumatic time in my life and the last thing I’d had on my mind was the environmental cost of what I was eating).

😥 I have a reusable coffee cup yet I continue to use single-use sanitary products as a period-having person. 


But we achieve nothing when these hypocrisies are pointed out. There’s enough guilt put upon individuals already when it comes to tackling the issues at hand.

We’re essentially in a time where we need to reverse a lot of the processes we’ve come to normalise – fast-fashion, plastic production, pollution caused by transportation, meat and animal produce – yet we also need to live our lives and get through each day as it comes. We can advocate and get behind as many issues as we like yet it’s almost impossible to be a perfect image for each and every one.

After taking a social media break for personal reasons at the end of 2017, I realised how much social media emphasises this and how we’re continually reminded of what we are and aren’t doing to aid the fight against what is, technically, killing our planet.

Fighting Against Single-Use Plastic and Hoping for a Better Future

If we weren’t on social media, we wouldn’t be consuming endless stories about the detriment of our world and ways to fix it or how the ways we’re trying to fix it, just aren’t enough. I felt that relief of guilt when I was disconnected from it all but it doesn’t mean it was completely forgotten. I saw it with my own eyes and I was able to understand what I personally could realistically try to change in my life.

I wasn’t constantly being told what I could be doing better and that pressure of doing so is what will, in turn, scare many people away from actually trying.

Praising one person for making one change, no matter how inconsequential it may seem, can lead to another person making the same, who also might be adapting to other causes elsewhere. It’s a domino effect and pointing out that there’s a domino we’ve missed leading in a different direction, stops us from completing the journey we’re already on.

However, it would seem ignorant of me to not point out that this is a very rose-tinted-glasses way of looking at things. I’m able to discuss this and believe that small actions lead to bigger things because I’m relying on an element of hope.

Fighting Against Single-Use Plastic and Hoping for a Better Future

Essentially, as a millennial or a teen from Generation Z (or whatever other buzz word or phrase you want to use), I have to. My generation is the rose-tinted-glass for past generations; I am the hope for others but that doesn’t mean I don’t need hope for myself.

Hope is the pair of rose-tinted glasses we all need. It’s a comfort blanket (or sleeping bag, for the purpose of the analogy I’m about to use) and it protects us from insanity and giving up before we’ve even started. It shields us away from the mountain of fears that I, and I suspect, we all have.

All of these issues in regards to the earth we live on, have created a mountain of fears of colossal size and hope provides the ropes and the hiking gear so that we can reach the peak or the sleeping bag that keeps us warm at night. Without it, most of us would be lost at base camp.

So, let’s not be too harsh on ourselves when we accomplish reaching the peak of all the smaller, less dauntingly sized mountains, first.


How do you feel about hypocrisy when it comes to fighting the good fight? Do you feel the same pressures in your own life? Let’s discuss in the comments!

  Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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My 2017 Ethical Fashion Education | Books, Magazines & More

By December 19, 2017 Ethical

It can be challenging to know where to look when it comes to educating yourself on ethical fashion or becoming a conscious consumer, so, to take some of the hard work away from you, I’ve compiled a list (just like last year) of what I found helpful and educational during 2017. Below, you will find books, websites and even an industry report, which I believe will be worth your time in taking a look at…


→ Clothing Poverty by Andrew Brooks

I actually never wrote the review of this book as I had promised as I believe I may need a second read of it. It’s a little harder to digest than other books I’ve read on ethical topics and admittedly, there were certain parts of it which I disagreed with and/or I would have tackled from a different angle but that’s all part of educating ourselves; it’s important to look at things from different perspectives even if it means feeling uncomfortable or in disagreement.

I wouldn’t recommend Clothing Poverty if you haven’t read any other books on ethical topics as it may throw you in right at the deep end. However, for those of you who have already started to explore ethics and sustainability, I’d add this to your ‘To Read’ list.

☼ Ethical Consumer Magazine

This year I was kindly set up with a subscription for Ethical Consumer magazine which essentially helps consumers make more ethical decisions when shopping. I’d used their directory before becoming a member but it can be frustrating when you can’t get hold of all the information you need, so, it’s been relieving being able to dig up more than I’d been able to.

Not only can you work out what brands are excelling in different areas, you can also read their actual online publication, which covers all sorts of subjects and is full of facts and data to feed your knowledge with.

★ Ellen MacArthur Foundation – A New Textiles Economy

Fairly recently, Ellen MacArthur and Stella McCartney partnered up to launch their new report – A New Textiles Economy – which explains the current model of the fashion industry and how it can change and evolve into a circular model, to decrease the amount of waste that is currently produced through manufacturing and the ways that consumers currently dispose of unwanted clothes.

Although perhaps better reading for industry insiders, the report is thought-provoking (so far; I have yet to complete it) and is a great way of introducing yourself to the idea of cradle-to-cradle manufacturing or circular design. I know that in the next year, I want to learn even more.

▷ A Harvest of Thorns by Corban Addison (Review)

If you missed out on my review of this fictional book, then you won’t know how highly I rate it. Unlike Clothing Poverty, I believe this is a great starter book to lead you towards a more empathetic experience of fashion.

I won’t say too much here so either click on through to my review or click on through to the checkout. You won’t regret it!

✤ Fashion Revolution Fanzine – Loved Clothes Last

I may be biased here as two pieces of my work can be found within the recycled paper pages but Fashion Revolution’s fanzine never seizes to amaze me. Not only is it informative and full of its own wonderful resources, it’s also incredibly inspiring and is a great way to refuel yourself with the hope that change can and will happen.

I’m extremely honoured and proud to be part of the FR community and I will appreciate you picking up a copy as much as their team, will.

→ Ethical Revolution Video Directory

Although I’ve always been aware of Ethical Revolution, they recently introduced me to their video directory which is a great place to find new documentaries and educational clips to watch!

So far, I’ve watched the BBC mockumentary, ‘Carnage‘, which explores what the world would be like if we all changed our eating habits and became vegans (not fashion related but it fits into sustainable issues). If you prefer watching to reading, take a look!

Plus, Ethical Revolution has an exclusive discount code for Lost Shapes, which you can apply to the whole Lost Shapes x Tolly Dolly Posh collection.


What have you been reading and watching in 2017? What have you learned? Share your recommendations and findings in the comments below…

  Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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It’s Taken Me Over 3 Years to Become a Conscious Consumer | My Ethical Journey

By December 16, 2017 Ethical

In early 2016, I was still buying fast-fashion, even knowing that my purchase wouldn’t benefit anything other than my itch for wanting something new…

How Long Does It Take to Become a Conscious Consumer?Circa April 2013, I was sat in my living room, rocking back and forth in my chair as I read the news of the Rana Plaza disaster. This was the very first time I considered that the industry I loved might have scary and dangerous consequences. I was thirteen but go ahead and call me uneducated or close-minded if you so wish.

The little I did know was extremely simple (and rather inaccurate) and barely scratched the surface on the real issues at hand – the clothes I bought were inexpensive because they were made cheaply and the more expensive they were, the higher quality they would be.

What literal schooling and the school-of-life hadn’t taught me was that cheaply really meant, unfairly. There’s always a reason why products are priced lowly or highly, after all. But for child and pre-teen me, it was exciting to shop, no matter how things were made.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Conscious Consumer?

It was an experience, one which I mostly shared with my mum and my sister. We’d go out on the weekends and we’d browse the latest offerings, piling up clothes to take to the changing rooms where we’d laugh and giggle when things didn’t fit right and joyously celebrate when a dress was ‘perfect’ and ‘so you’ (and also didn’t break the bank).

My sister moved out before I ever reached my tenth birthday so those shopping trips lessened. However, they only became more cherished when she’d come back to see me and we’d do what we hadn’t been able to do for however long it had been.

I’d go on days out with my mum too because that was what we did to treat ourselves, with Southampton’s West Quay being the destination of our choice.

To avoid being stereotypical and saying that only the women in my life were shopping-til-they-dropped, I also used to plan days out with my dad where we’d spend one-on-one time dressing each other up and treating ourselves to a KFC afterwards (it was a treat, thank you very much; their baked beans are second-to-none.)

How Long Does It Take to Become a Conscious Consumer?

This was all ordinary behaviour and to this day in western culture, still is. We go into town with our friends and we make a full day of it. You can make memories in high-street changing rooms.

Thankfully for me, I was never brought up to avoid charity shops or vintage stores despite the stigma that surrounds them, so, without even knowing it I often balanced out my new purchases with more sustainable ones.

I’d say the closest I got to a proper formal education on the negative aspect to our clothes and the fashion industry, would have been a school trip to a local landfill where we saw the piles of rubbish which included perfectly usable textiles.

Other than that, it took the collapse of a garment factory home to the products of Primark, for me to finally embark upon my ethical fashion journey.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Conscious Consumer?

It took me until summer 2016 to properly bid farewell to those sorts of purchases (excluding underwear – you can read why that is here), even though I was well aware that there were better alternatives and reasons to consume more consciously.

A lot of it had to do with my shopping habits rather than the actual clothes I was buying, though. It’s almost as if you experience withdrawal symptoms and every now and then you have to fall back into fast-fashions grasp and use the good ol’ excuse of ‘treating yourself’ but since when did treating yourself mean buying something which was made without people and the planet in mind?

Technically, your dopamine levels are the only part of the equation that is being treated, or, maybe the water used to make the fabric of your new dress, just with toxic chemicals, dyes and plastic micro-fibres.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Conscious Consumer?

I am by no means perfect, currently. For instance, I shop second-hand but I pay no attention to the fabrics I’m buying and now that I’m more educated, I know more about the impacts of other aspects of my life, yet I haven’t made many changes in those other problem areas.

It takes time to become more conscious individually and the rest of the industry following will also take time. It’s one of the reasons we need to shout about it loudly and proudly because the quicker it happens, the better!

The more you educate yourself and allow yourself to question what you’re used to, the easier it will become to make the right choices for you. It will also make it a lot easier for other people who haven’t even considered other ways of shopping and experiencing fashion, to educate themselves too.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Conscious Consumer?

My consumption habits and patterns in 2016 were tremendously better than those I had in 2013 and the ones I have now make me feel content and comfortable, however, there will always be room for improvement. If you feel hopeless or perhaps even a little guilty, take a breather and put things into perspective.

Take a trip down memory lane and take a look at the changes you’ve made so far. Is there anything more you can be doing now?

Do you have any ethical goals you’d like to achieve? Is there anything you want to learn more about? If my thirteen-year-old self had asked herself those questions, I’m sure I would have reached the stage I’m at now, far sooner.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Conscious Consumer?


Here are some Q&As to break-down my ethical journey…


When did I first become aware of the issues of fast-fashion?

Around 2013 – early 2014. The main chunk of my education came from the documentary, The True Cost, which was released around the same time. You can watch it on Netflix.

What was my first ethical purchase?

Other than the dozens and dozens of second-hand items I’ve consumed in my life, I believe it was an ASOS Africa blouse. Although ASOS may not be the most ethical or sustainable brand and I don’t know too much about how it was manufactured, I think it was a good starting place and allowed me to slowly transition from shopping there frequently to making more considered choices.

When was my last fast-fashion purchase?

I can’t remember the exact time or date or which purchase was officially the last but the four items I do remember buying last year (in the early months and possibly towards the end of 2015) were a pair of Motivi floral trousers, a Pull & Bear jumper and a pair of jeans, and an embroidered white shirt from Stradivarius (the latter two brands of which are owned by Inditex).

Although these purchases weren’t ethical, they are all still in my wardrobe. I’ve worn the floral trousers so much that the zip is now broken (and will soon be fixed, I promise!) and I probably won’t be buying any other jeans for a fair few years.

I don’t condone boycotting on a mass scale but if you can shop with alternative brands – which I believe most of you reading this will be able to do, even if it means not shopping at all for a while -, then avoiding fast-fashion is what I highly advise.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Conscious Consumer?

What has been one of the biggest struggles so far?

Not being able to buy anything overly elaborate or ‘out there’. By that I mean, not browsing through ASOS’s new-in and buying a ruffled midi-dress which is half-floral and half-sequin (that’s the first item that caught my eye on a very brief look at their latest offerings).

I’ve perfectly adapted to this change and I believe it’s made me make much more versatile style choices meaning my wardrobe is far more wearable than it ever was before, but I can understand why it’s easy to succumb to pieces that are totally out there and not easily accessible elsewhere (unless you’re making it yourself).

What is my next goal as a conscious consumer?

In terms of fashion purchases, I want to consider the fabrics I’m buying, whether that’s new or second-hand. I want to avoid bringing more polyester and man-made materials into my life to avoid the unwanted breakdown of fibres when washing, as well as wanting to consider the affects fabrics have on my body – who knows what chemicals are in what we wear?


Are you a conscious consumer? How far along are you on your ethical journey? What are your ethical goals? Share them in the comments!

  Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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Why Wish Lists Aren’t Just for Christmas

By November 20, 2017 Ethical, Wishlist

A while ago, I made the conscious decision to rid my blog of any content using product images, in the hopes to make my site more organic and a place where I only featured items I owned and loved. Most of that content came in the form of wish lists. After reading a piece at around the same time by my Twitter buddy and fellow teen blogger, Eleanor Claudie, I’ve been mulling over why maybe we should all start to rethink wish lists and why they’re fit for purpose for more than just your Christmas or birthday lists as a child…

How Wish Lists Can Make You a More Conscious Consumer

Although it’s a lot easier to see something of a higher price as an investment, I personally like to see everything we obtain and buy as an investment in itself especially when it comes to our clothes.

It’s easy to walk into a high-street store and take the low prices for granted; if you don’t like something after a few weeks or months of buying it, it doesn’t have to break the bank to pass it on or throw it away without much thought.

I know I’ve come across plenty of still-new and still-labelled items in charity shops which shows the short amount of time it can take for something to come in and out of our wardrobes (it even makes me think people have forgotten returning items for a refund is a viable option).

This throw-away culture has become easier for me to avoid and understand over the past couple of years not only due to my knowledge of consumerism but also due to the fact that as I near adulthood (6 months!), I know that what I buy is mine and will be with me when I leave home and create my own haven for collecting and storing what I own.

How Wish Lists Can Make You a More Conscious Consumer

This even crosses over into other parts of my life, like home décor – I’ve curated a style I like and I have posters and prints that I one day want to have framed and hung on the wall. They may not be of use to me now but I know they’ll be of use to me in the future.

What we buy now should last us for years. There’s really no excuse for buying something now and not liking it after 30 days (the usual time allowed for returns and refunds for most stores); it’s a mindless way of buying, whichever way you look at it.

I take this to the extent of properly considering what I buy second-hand, too. Due to the fact that second-hand shopping doesn’t have many consequences or cons to it, it’s easy to want to buy everything you set your eyes on but the same principle still stands. Do you really need what you’re buying?

I’ve previously discussed ways to know whether you’ll actually end up wearing what you buy and one of the tips I suggested was ‘sleeping on it’. Here’s a quote directly from that post which a fair few of you found helpful…

“If you walk away from something you catch your eye on, you’ll know for definite if it’s really worth buying if you sleep on it and wake up still thinking about it.”

How Wish Lists Can Make You a More Conscious Consumer

Perhaps as a child, we never took this too seriously. We might not have written down what Bratz doll we wanted after sleeping on it for weeks and weeks – yes, I played with Bratz, Barbies and the odd Action Man – but we wrote it down and waited and if we were lucky and fortunate enough, it would show up under our tree on Christmas morning or wrapped up on our birthday, and we would go on to treasure the gift because it hadn’t been bought for us on impulse.

Not only do wish lists make us think through our purchases more considerately, they also give us time to think about our budgets which can be helpful especially with items which are priced a little higher. You’ll be more certain about how worthwhile the purchase is and you’ll be more certain you can afford it, too.

So, what’s on your wish list currently? What do you really love but are willing to wait for? Here’s a list of items that I’d quite like to add to my wardrobe…


~ MY WISHLIST ~

Tulsa Hexagon Ring (Tribe of Lambs)
Rashmi Ring (Tribe of Lambs)
Ida Black Lace Bra (Luva Huva)
Ninette Ruby Bra (Luva Huva)
Corduroy Trousers (People Tree)

V-10 Extra White Nautico Pekin Trainers (VEJA)
Eliza Dress (Reformation)
Iris Sunglasses (Peep Eyewear)
Hotel Sweatshirt (Paloma Wool)


Of course, everything is better in moderation and I would recommend you limit the number of wishlists you compile because otherwise, it defeats the whole purpose of more considerate choices. If you want some easy ways to create a wishlist without putting pen to paper, you can use a notepad on your laptop or create a bookmark folder on your browser.

Make sure to subscribe to my newsletter if you want to see more of what I’m loving, from time-to-time.

  Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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Goodness and Gold | Little by Little Jewellery*

By November 13, 2017 Ethical, My Style

With age, my style has evolved over the years, drawing me closer to items and elements that I never used to appreciate when I was younger. Part of this evolution involved discovering the joy of high-quality jewellery and saying goodbye to costume necklaces and rings which turn my fingers green. They’re sustainable investments and certain pieces have now simply become part of me…

Little by Little Ethical Jewellery for Action Against Hunger

Little by Little Ethical Jewellery for Action Against Hunger

Little by Little Ethical Jewellery for Action Against Hunger


WHAT I WORE: Floaty Cover-Up (Jumble Sale) // Geometric Slip Dress £47.00 (Mayamiko)* // Recycled Denim Choker (Yours Again)* // Watch (Timex)* // Silver Rings (Old & Gemporia*) // Gold Wedge Fan Ring £45.00 (Little by Little)*


My love of rings started when my mum sorted through her jewellery collection a couple of years ago, discovering a silver ring which no longer fit her but was in perfect condition. Fortunately, I was handed it down and you can now see it gracing my finger in almost every picture I post. It’s simple and the stone isn’t anything too spectacular but it’s definitely been and will continue to be sustained by an emotional attachment to it.

It took a few weeks of taking it on and off before I realised I could simply wear it all around the clock because it wasn’t going to wear away or turn a different colour like all of the other jewels I owned previously.

Peculiarly, I get a sense of satisfaction from the idea that just anybody I pass in the street will never know how long it’s been there with me and that yes, I carry it with me all day and every day; it isn’t just a decoration to match what I’m wearing.

For someone in their teens who most definitely isn’t nearing marriage anytime soon, it gives me a similar sense of pride as to wearing a wedding ring (okay, maybe not quite in terms of the meaning behind it but I now get a sense of what it can feel like). It’s the one thing which makes me feel complete even if I’m having a bit of drab day, sartorially.

I added my next ring to my right hand not too long after and although it may seem even simpler, the sparkle to it is what’s missing from my first original addition. And now here I am, donning my third; a gold number – because I’m not against mixing metals – which can fit almost all my fingers (I have tiny ones so it was nice not to have to get a ring measurer out) and has a rather special inspiration behind it…

Little by Little Ethical Jewellery for Action Against Hunger

Little by Little Ethical Jewellery for Action Against Hunger

Little by Little was set up in 2015 by Annabel, a jewellery designer, and Georgina, a cookery author. Combining their two passions, not only do the duo create beautifully designed jewellery to last a lifetime but they also put their energy into supporting the charity Action Against Hunger; the global organisation combating world hunger and providing healthy livelihoods for those in need.

It’s the reason as to why my ring might remind you of a fresh slice of lemon, which is rather fitting for me as not only do I love lemons but where I’m staying in Italy, is dotted with lemon trees around the garden.


Our main aim in establishing Little by Little in 2015, was to make a difference in a sustainable manner. That is why we partnered with Action Against Hunger.

Action Against Hunger’s teams work in nearly 50 countries worldwide to carry out innovative, lifesaving programmes in nutrition, food security, water, sanitation and hygiene. The money that we have raised has generated enough funds to build a latrine and feed 100 malnourished children for a day.


I have to be honest and say that there are plenty of brands out there that label themselves as ‘ethical’ or ‘sustainable’ simply for the work they’re doing with what they generate from their revenue. I’m of course in no way against companies which do this but it can make you feel sceptical of what their end goal is all around.

A lot of the time when people ask me how to know if a brand is truly ethical, I tell them to trust their gut instinct and work out whether the brand is truly passionate about spreading awareness for the issues that affect the industry.

Speaking to Annabel about her core values made me understand and appreciate that it isn’t all about donating money once the item is purchased – it’s about being transparent and responsible from stage one. Although I’m able to let myself and others off for purchasing unethical jewellery and watches due to how long they last, it feels refreshing and satisfactory when you know your jewellery has been made with care.


The intricate jewellery is lovingly created by a well-established jewellery producer in Lima, Peru. The factory has been running for 25 years. It now employs 350 people.

From its inception, its aim was always to bring opportunity and employment. It does this by giving jobs to people with no prior technical experience, training them in the art of jewellery. Having visited I can verify that it is a well equipped, safe and spacious place to work.

Whereabouts are Little by Little items manufactured?

Little by Little Ethical Jewellery for Action Against Hunger

Little by Little Ethical Jewellery for Action Against Hunger

Little by Little Ethical Jewellery for Action Against Hunger
whomademyclothes~ WHO MADE MY RING? ~
There are a number of different individuals that put together the different elements of Little by Little jewellery. Everything is made from scratch. The team are well-skilled jewellers who make and manufacture the jewellery. This is led by Sandra Romero and Piero Reinoso.

Fashion with a cause is often easier to get behind morally within the realm of ethical fashion because we know for certain that our money will be reinvested into something we support and believe in. Although this is the case the whole year round and I don’t need to sell anybody on it, I think as we near gifting season, it’s something to pay attention to. Little by Little combine charity and ethics; a double whammy!

Not only can you gift somebody with a piece to treasure for years and years to come, you can also gift them with a story and a positive message that they’ll be reminded of whenever they wear their new jewels or when, like me, they look down at their new ring every day.


Do you see jewellery as a sustainable investment? How would you style up my ring? Let me know in the comments!

(This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Little by Little. Read my full disclaimer here.)

  Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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Is Ethical Fashion Expensive? | A Discussion

By November 8, 2017 Ethical

For the past week or so I’ve been trying my hardest to put this piece together and have it make actual, logical sense. I wanted to start straight off the bat by saying that ethical fashion isn’t expensive and explain from that point onwards. However, upon writing and re-writing (three times!) and discussing it with others, I’ve come to the conclusion that this topic just isn’t that simple, even if I can see it that way myself.

Why Is Ethical Fashion Expensive

At first, I believed that my own experience of consuming ethical and sustainable fashion was a prime example of debunking the myth of a fair wardrobe being completely inaccessible but even I have to admit that I have certain privileges which make it a whole easier to fathom. I’m all about honesty around here; there’s no such thing as being overly transparent.

If I were to say that I don’t add new items to my wardrobe regularly, that wouldn’t be the whole truth. From time to time, I do fill up the gaps in my wardrobe but often I don’t have to pay the expense because I write this blog and am trusted to receive samples and gifted items in order to promote brands which are doing good work.

This isn’t often, which makes the ‘regularly’ part of the statement correct but it still happens; I can’t deny that and nor would I want to – I love fashion. I would expect you do too if you’re reading this.

If I were to also say that the prices of the brands I promote are realistic for people my age or even just the average person who might come across my blog, that wouldn’t be the whole truth either because without the privileges I receive from writing and working my socks off around here, I can hands down say I wouldn’t be wearing a People Tree jumpsuit or a recycled denim choker that costs almost £30 (although, that People Tree jumpsuit has definitely made me realise how worthy their clothes are of an investment).

Why Is Ethical Fashion Expensive

It goes back to the good work they’re doing – I want to show that it’s being done instead of clinging on to the brand names I no longer appreciate. (Bear in mind, I recently turned down an ethical directory feature request because I deemed the brand to be too expensive for my readers. I’m happy with the balance I’ve found.)

If I were to say that second-hand shopping is the best way around any price-based or moral dilemma, that once again wouldn’t be the whole truth because I’m a slim 17-year-old and I’m fortunate most charity shops are filled with viable options for me.

I can’t confirm nor deny whether people of different sizes do genuinely struggle when on the hunt in these scenarios (I often find many more larger sizes, especially in UK stores) but I’m happy to admit I’ve probably been lucky on more than one occasion.

I’m excluding looking for workwear, children’s wear or necessary purchases within this and the rest of my discussion – I’m not about to start saying we should be buying bras and underwear from our local Oxfam (although, good on you if you do) or that a young family of four should all of a sudden stop buying new clothes for their fast-growing kids (my nephews wear mostly second-hand clothes but there’s no way they could go without new shoes or re-purchases here and there).

Why Is Ethical Fashion Expensive

So, what can I say that for the most part, strips away privilege, anything to do about the way we look at ethical options as an ‘investment’ and the idea of conscious consumerism and changing our shopping habits?

Well, it goes back to what a lot of my past blog posts used to revolve around – the facts and figures that show what we’re paying, isn’t what we should be paying if we want to acknowledge that the industry of fashion and the clothes we wear need to change.

The concept of fast-fashion (aka. the opposite of ethical, sustainable or slow fashion) originated in the 90s when the industry in the west discovered the opportunity to manufacturer clothing at a cheaper price and at a faster rate, allowing customers the chance to update and add to their wardrobe with fresh and new styles whilst saving money at the same time, and in-turn, producing more profit (it makes business sense, right?).

Why Is Ethical Fashion Expensive

The majority of fashion manufacturing moved overseas, allowing brands to find cheap labour in developing countries. Quite simply, the demand grew, being supported by catwalks, the advertising industry and the new consumer expectation that we could have it all, whenever we wanted and for an amount, our purses would be happy with. This lead to more and more pressure being put upon the factories by the brands we grew to know and love. It’s why we saw the Rana Plaza disaster and the Tazreen factory fire.

Factories in developing countries aren’t built for the consumption of fast-fashion and nor is the supply chain. The cost of production means underpaid workers, poor working conditions, human rights violations and even child or forced labour that nobody would allow elsewhere.

Why Is Ethical Fashion Expensive

All of these are consequences of the cheap, low prices that can be found on high-streets or online, and that’s not even including the affects this type of production puts on the planet and earth itself. It’s unsustainable and it’s unethical and there’s a reason why it’s cheap and why I don’t use the term very fondly around here.

Even if we’re not used to it and even if it will take years to change – we should be paying more which means ethical fashion, quite frankly, isn’t expensive in theory. It’s expensive in terms of price tag comparison (an ethical t-shirt could cost you £20-30 versus a fast-fashion alternative at £10) but the reason behind it is just and fair. It ensures that workers are paid fairly and that they work in safe environments, as well as often ensuring the use of sustainable and organic materials.

“But in the meantime, Tolly, how can I afford to buy new clothes at the same time as caring about where they come from? It seems impossible.”

Why Is Ethical Fashion Expensive

This is where my favourite friend, Mindset, comes into play. Over-consumption goes hand-in-hand with the actual manufacturing of clothes and it isn’t helped by how we now see it being portrayed in front of our very own eyes. I know one YouTuber who has done eight different ‘haul’ videos in the past month.

I’m by no means accusing any of you of over-consuming but I think a lot of us can almost experience a sense of ‘FOMO’ (fear of missing out) by not owning a beret or a pair of heeled boots right now. I know I have!

We live in a society that thrives off of a culture of consuming the latest new “thing” (due to how #capitalism and the world of advertising works, as already mentioned) which is especially the case with fashion, with trends dipping in and out that not only affect our clothes but go on to change everything else around us.

Why Is Ethical Fashion Expensive

The more we understand that this behaviour and way of consuming isn’t necessary, the less money we’ll end up spending in shorter periods of time, allowing more room for those so-say more pricey purchases which will end up being more of an investment anyway. Cost-effectiveness is sustainable and beneficial especially if you’re on a tighter budget (again – parents or anyone with strict workwear policies, I’m not pointing at you).

For example, if you know a pair of unethically produced shoes which are currently in the fashionable charts, won’t last you as long as a more investable and ethically produced pair would; think about which is more worthwhile, not only for your wallet that may have to repurchase once the cheaper option has worn down but also for the planet and the people who are making them. For me, I don’t even question it anymore.

And if you can and you’re willing to try? Look in Oxfam or Goodwill or on Depop or eBay. Even if it takes you three times as long as looking on ASOS or scrolling through what Topshop has to offer – I promise you it will feel so much more satisfying when you’ve prolonged a perfectly wearable item’s lifespan. I recently welcomed in an old pair of cherry red Dr Martens and a suede coat most definitely not in my size but there’s nothing a new pair of innersoles and wearing something oversized can’t do!


As this title suggests, I want this to be a discussion so go forth and leave your thoughts in the comments!

Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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If You Don’t Watch The True Cost, Read This – A Harvest of Thorns by Corban Addison

By October 24, 2017 Ethical

I’ve covered quite a few books on my blog over the past year or two, all of them being related to ethical fashion on varying levels, however, I’ve never read or reviewed a fictional book until I discovered A Harvest of Thorns and realised that fiction could be another way to help people understand and come to terms with fast-fashion. (Please be aware that this book and my review covers topics such as rape and may give away mild spoilers.)

A Harvest of Thorns by Corban Addison Book Review


A Harvest of Thorns by Corban Addison


Although I had the idea that the book covered the tale of a single garment worker, A Harvest of Thorns actually covers the tale of not only garment workers, but a journalist and the general counsel of the fictional retailer, ‘Presto‘ (you could compare it to the likes of Amazon).

Based on what the author Corban Addison discovered and experienced himself after the Tazreen Fashions factory fire in 2012, the story covers a similar tale and how it affects a major corporation, consumers and the future of the fashion industry.

It’s film-like, in the way the book is written; it’s descriptive and immersive and allows you to understand all of the different perspectives that you’re reading, whether that be from the perspective of a garment worker who is forced to work without pay; Joshua Griswold – the journalist battling with his struggling relationship, his cancer-ridden daughter and his career – or Cameron Alexander; the general counsel (chief lawyer) who recently lost his wife in a tragic car accident and is facing the possibility of his mother’s death.

A Harvest of Thorns by Corban Addison Book Review

As you can probably tell, this isn’t an uplifting story but it isn’t supposed to be. Although all of the stories and characters are fictional, it all comes from reality – these stories and characters exist, whether we want them to or not.

The reason I suggest this book as an alternative to The True Cost in the title, is because I believe it’s just as hard-hitting, even if it’s not factual and can’t show you the honest and costly reality of the industry through video footage.

It also explores more than just the Rana Plaza – the only true story included within the main plot – and the realities of factory conditions. The fictional aspect allows you to understand and interpret each story in a way which you can empathise with yourself.

Although I judged Cameron at first for his corporate position, I came to understand that he emphasised easily with what was going on in front of him. There’s no excuse for not being able to take a step back and really understand what is going on from an emotional level but the parallels between his personal life and what he was finding out about the industry, reminded me of my post after my experiences with the Italian earthquakes in 2016 (you can’t prevent an earthquake but you can prevent people from getting hurt).

A Harvest of Thorns by Corban Addison Book Review

Cameron was struggling with guilt over the death of his wife Olivia, which he believed could have been prevented by him taking a break from driving when he was tired.

The factory fire described in the book could have been prevented if Presto relieved some of its pressure off of suppliers (even when as the book explains, Presto’s customers wouldn’t notice the difference if they did) – therefore, he was able to really grasp the issue at hand as he was dealing with a similar personal issue.

You may notice that the two main characters are both men, but to me, this actually supports the book as a whole and adds something really important to certain stories. For example, the character Alya experiences sexual assault and rape from a factory supervisor and ends up pregnant, alone and unable to go back home when she’s made to leave her factory.

Sexual assault has been highlighted in the news recently and thankfully, a lot of good is coming from the bad, with more women and victims coming forward to show that this really is a pressing issue. However, Alya’s story in the book is one which is hardly ever spoken about due to the fact that women like her, aren’t able to speak out. It could jeopardise their whole life and risk worsening their position.

Cameron and Joshua are two men who are in positions of power and privilege (which they could easily abuse) and are able to help Alya out of her situation and begin the process of making sure it doesn’t happen again.

A Harvest of Thorns by Corban Addison Book Review

If I’m to point out one major takeaway from the book, it’s that facing up to ignorance is a huge challenge in the fight for change within the fashion industry (and many other industries, too). Whether that’s from a government perspective, a company, an investor or more specifically, consumers.

In the book, it takes a video of one of the garment workers speaking out their story for somebody high up in Presto to really open their eyes, even when they’ve been faced by the press, activists and their own employees with stacks upon stacks of evidence as to why change needs to happen.

A lot of the time, we don’t want to hear it. We don’t want to watch films and documentaries like The True Cost because then we have to finally admit that we could be doing so much better. That’s why, once again, this book is a great alternative – you can read it as you wish, knowing it’s fictional, and take it into your own hands to apply your thoughts and feelings to how it affects you and your own shopping habits.

A Harvest of Thorns by Corban Addison Book Review

My rough sketches of Cameron, Madison, Josh and Alya based upon my imagination.

What books have you read recently? Share your recommendations in the comments!

  Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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The Answers to Your Many Questions | Survey Response

By October 19, 2017 Ethical, Shop

Not too long ago, I popped up a quick survey for you guys to answer and submit your burning questions and queries about ethical fashion. The survey is still open and I would love if you would continue to fill it in, as it’s always good to know what you’re interested in learning more about. In the meantime, I have some answers for those of you have already asked away, inspired by my ‘Many Questions’ t-shirt from the Lost Shapes x Tolly Dolly Posh collection…

Common Ethical Fashion Questions | Lost Shapes x Tolly Dolly Posh


WHAT I WORE: Many Questions T-Shirt £20.00 (Lost Shapes x Tolly Dolly Posh) // Ripped Jeans (New Look – old)* // Vagabond Dioon Platforms (Mastershoe-MyShu – old) // Red Leather Jacket £6.00 (Charity Shop)


Is there such a thing as cheap or high-street ethical fashion?

It’s understandable that this question became a reoccurring theme in my survey responses, especially as most of you reading this are of a student age where funds are limited whilst you still want to enjoy fashion and updating your wardrobe.

I really want to say yes to this question. I don’t want to let people down and leave you all feeling hopeless that shopping ethically just isn’t a viable option, but especially when it comes to the high-street, it’s a real tricky one (and I will be writing about it in more depth in the near future).

I’m quite open with how I stand on high-street and ‘cheap’ brands launching sustainable and more ethically-conscious lines and collections; I’m a bit of a sceptic, honestly. For me, the negatives of how these brands and businesses are run will always out-way the smaller, positive steps they’re taking, until major shifts start to take place. I can’t happily tell you to go and shop with H&M and their Conscious collection when I’m being told they burn unwanted items.

The thing is, there’s always going to be a better option, even when you’re buying from a brand which is Fair Trade certified or is using recycled fibres – there’s always going to be a brand or designer out there who is doing the next best thing (which is great, don’t get me wrong). The better option to buying on the high-street is buying second-hand; the better option to buying second-hand is not buying at all. You see the dilemma?

So – really, no, there’s no such thing as ethical high-street fashion, yet. That’s just because that’s how the industry works and that’s what we’re all on the path to changing. Is there such thing as cheap ethical fashion? Yes. Second-hand and thrift shops are full of it. Your mum’s wardrobe is. XYZ Insert Ethical Brand name’s seasonal sale is. The £30 t-shirt which will last five times longer than an £8 option is also doing the trick.

Common Ethical Fashion Questions | Lost Shapes x Tolly Dolly Posh

How do I get my friends on board?

Luckily for you, I’ve touched on this question several times in the past. Click here, here and here for some of my old blog posts to browse through. I know from my own personal experience that it isn’t easy to suddenly transform your friends and family into conscious consumers.

It won’t click for everyone immediately, especially those who are only receiving information and education through you and you only. Honestly, if you really want to do it – try and get them to sit down and watch the True Cost, which you can easily stream via Netflix. Maybe even do a screening at home! Tell them that it’s important to you and you think it could be interesting and valuable for them to watch.

Where do I find trend-specific pieces?

Once again, you’re in luck. I recently wrote about my experience with trends and ethical fashion and how my priorities have now changed. That’s the blog post to answer your question.

Common Ethical Fashion Questions | Lost Shapes x Tolly Dolly Posh

What books and resources should I use to learn more?

Third times the charm, isn’t it? I’ve got you covered with my 2016 list of books and resources. I’ll be sure to do one for 2017 too, as I’ve definitely learned and discovered since then, including the book A Harvest of Thorns by Corban Addison which looks at the fast-fashion industry from a fictional perspective.

Are there any sustainable technologies helping advance the industry?

This is a really interesting question which I wished I had a blog post to direct you to for my answer but alas, technology is part of the industry I have limited knowledge in (alongside the intricacies of Fair Trade, the ethical beauty world and vegan materials) but will bear in mind to research so that I can share my findings with you.

Any examples that do come to mind, are mainly fabric oriented, like Pinatex, which takes pineapple leaf fibres and creates a leather alternative which you’ll see being used by the likes of Po-Zu (the ethical and sustainable footwear brand now headed up by Safia Minney).

Have any other burning questions? Leave them in the comments or click here to submit to my survey!


Do you feel inspired? If so, perhaps you might be interested in nominating Tolly Dolly Posh for an Observer Ethical Award. If you believe my commitment to ethical fashion is award-winning, click this link and leave my name, link and a few words in the Young Green Leaders category. Nominations now close on October 22nd 2017. 

  Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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