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My Honest Ethical Wardrobe Priorities

By July 21, 2017 Ethical

I’ve decided within my (hopefully) helpful ethical content, I need to inject some honesty. As much as I want everyone to convert to the way of conscious shopping, I understand it isn’t always easy at first which is why I’ve decided to list out my honest ethical wardrobe priorities in order of what I shop for most consciously…

ethical wardrobe priorities - tolly dolly posh ethical fashion blog

1. Tops

Tops (t-shirts, blouses, sweaters etc) are what take up the majority of my wardrobe and what I wear most. Unless it’s the summer, I’m not a huge dress person so, my outfits are generally made up of two key pieces rather than the one, meaning I have more choice in variation.

Although my shopping habits have dramatically changed since becoming a conscious consumer (no more ASOS splurges or random Primark hauls around here!), I definitely purchase more tops than anything else which means I’m more aware of what ethics are behind them. I’ll either shop second-hand or look through some staple choices by brands like People Tree.

2. Skirts

Over the past few years, I’ve become more of a skirt wearer which makes sense with what I’ve already explained about the top half of my outfits. Depending on my mood and the time of the year, I’m also a shorts person but I don’t invest in them very often at all. When it comes to buying skirts, I think the fabric is really important to take into account. It really makes a difference in terms of shape and style and of course, sustainability.

3. Dresses

As much as I don’t wear them too often, I’m not opposed to adding more to my wardrobe. I tend to steer clear of trend-led dresses (which is rather easy when second-hand shopping and ethical brands don’t tend to lead you down that route) and focus on dresses which I know will last me in terms of style and versatility. I also always think about layering as I’m not one to shy away from making use of summer dresses in winter by adding on a jumper underneath or a blouse on top.

4. Jackets

I would say dresses and jackets are almost of equal of priority but as with items like shorts, I’m not buying jackets on the regular (or any clothing for that matter) which means they’re slightly lower on my scale. Due to the fact that jackets are a form of outwear, considering longevity and practicality is a major factor when it comes to buying new because you want to know it will actually do its job rather than just look pretty. However currently, I would say 85-90% of the jackets I own are second-hand or have been in my wardrobe for years now.

5. Trousers (& Shorts)

I believe trousers are a really interchangeable item, meaning once again, I don’t buy them often. In fact, my collection is rather limited. I am guilty of buying fast-fashion denim not too long ago (within the past year) but due to the fact that I won’t be buying any more anytime soon, I think it’s something I can let myself off with. Jeans will last but they’re also truly unsustainable to produce so this part of my wardrobe is what I want to learn more about. I have my eye on you Mud Jeans!

ethical wardrobe priorities - what daisy did

6. Handbags

After receiving my What Daisy Did bag and becoming truly obsessed with my Paguro recycled rubber number, I’ve realised that handbags are a lot easier to buy ethically than you’d think hence why they’ve moved up a little in my rankings. It’s only in the past three or four years that I’ve actually started wearing a bag every day but now I’ve had time to truly understand their sustainable value, I’m definitely thinking about them more when that new-purchase feeling starts tickling at my skin.

7. Shoes

It might seem surprising that footwear is in the bottom half of my priority list but I have to be honest and explain my reasonings behind that. Firstly and simply, as with the rest of this list, I’m not buying them often.

Secondly, a lot of the shoes in my wardrobe have been gifted to me across the duration of my blog meaning I haven’t needed to splash out personally and thirdly, speaking of splashing out, I currently can’t afford any of the more sustainable options on the market. That’s the truth, which means when it comes to shoes I’m not always thinking about ethics and sustainability first. I do, however, like most people, wear shoes every day which means I’m always putting them to good use.

8. Coats

I own two coats. One rain coat and one large, second-hand faux fur option. I don’t plan on adding to this very small collection anytime soon, so the reasoning behind #8 is rather self-explanatory.

9. Jewellery

I’ve never thought of jewellery in an ethical and sustainable sense but recently more and more brands focused on just that have opened my eyes to it being an option. I absolutely adore Tribe of Lambs and I was rather close to hitting the checkout button on their site recently, so, I may have been converted to shop more consciously when it comes to my very rare jewellery shopping urges.

10. Underwear

We all wear it, so it has to be included! As I’m admittedly still at that stage of buying rather unflattering and not at all glamorous underwear, it really just isn’t that important to me although I know there are great ethical options (just take a look at my directory, for examples!).

Again, the infrequency of my underwear shopping is the main reason for this, combined with the fact that I’m still shopping in Marks & Spencer kids. You heard it here first, folks! I may be ethically aware but my underwear hasn’t quite got the message just yet. I promise I’ll work on it. (Was this TMI? Probably but I’m trying to be as honest as I can be.)

What are your ethical priorities? How are you being a conscious consumer? List it all out in the comments!

If you want to keep up-to-date with me whilst I lose all writing and creative motivation to the sun and summer fun (hello seeing Arcade Fire live!), make sure you follow me on Instagram and check in on my Instagram Story every now and then…

Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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Starting an Ethical Wardrobe | Secondhand Autumn Shopping

By October 14, 2016 Ethical, My Style

I know I’m not really supposed to apologise for what goes on, on this blog, but I would just like to say a quick sorry for my lack of blog posts since LFW finished. I did actually give a quick warning to say I’d be on a break, but then I was struck by a dreaded cold and the break stretched further than I’d anticipated. However, I’m hopefully back for good now! I thought I’d start things back up again with a simple, good ol’ fashion-y post about what I’ve been shopping for recently, all in the form of secondhand pieces of course! Much more satisfying and a great way to gain inspiration for your own ethical wardrobe…

how to start an ethical wardrobe - secondhand shopping for autumn fashion

how to start an ethical wardrobe - secondhand shopping for autumn fashion

~ WHAT I BOUGHT: £80 ~

☞ Vintage yellow leather jacket (€35 – jumble sale)
☞ Black jeans (£5 – charity shop)
☞ Floral oversized shirt (£8 – charity shop)
☞ Sheer white ruffle cover-up (€3 – jumble sale)
☞ Vintage gold sunglasses (€2 – jumble sale)

☞ Navy satin suit trousers (€5 – jumble sale)
☞ Navy satin suit jacket (€5 – jumble sale)
☞ Pink cashmere roll neck (£5 – charity shop)
☞ Lurex black sparkly slip dress (£7 – charity shop)
☞ Purple satin ruffle blouse (€5 – jumble sale)

As I was saying; satisfying, isn’t it? All of that for the price you might pay for two or three high street items which aren’t necessarily (well, almost definitely) ethically or sustainably produced. What’s even more satisfying is how everything blends and matches so well! It wasn’t really intentional, but when you’re shopping in all in one, I suppose it’s a subconscious thing, to buy items that all match up perfectly. Technically, though, I didn’t buy all of this is in one as you can see from the labels above. Unfortunately, I didn’t keep my receipts to tell you which charity shops I shopped in, but I can tell you from memory that RSPCA & Longfield Hospice are two of my favourites for well-sorted stock.

For these recent purchases, the only items I had in mind beforehand was some sort of evening dress (I’m off on a cruise at the start of November and let me tell you, they dress fancy) and possibly, a suit. A while ago whilst in the car, my dad spotted a men’s suit in the window of a shop and um… it turns out that apparently, it was a better fit for me (it was polka dot, mind you), so ever since then I’ve been on the hunt for a matching two piece! I’ve actually become really interested in suits in general over the past few months, just because of their fit and the androgynous vibe that comes with them.

how to start an ethical wardrobe - secondhand shopping for autumn fashion

how to start an ethical wardrobe - secondhand shopping for autumn fashion

It turns out that running giddily around a jumble sale looking for every single stand of clothes pays off because I found it! I found the suit I was looking for! I hadn’t really decided on my ideal suit, but I knew a navy one wouldn’t turn me away. You can’t really see it in these pictures, but I promise once I’ve adjusted the shoulders, I’ll be shooting it ASAP! It’s actually a satin number with the most gorgeous fitted trousers, and it cost me €10 in total. And the even greater thing? At the same jumble sale, I picked up two options for blouses.

I don’t feel so guilty indulging in trends when I’m buying them secondhand (trends = mass consumption/mass production), so when I, my mum spotted a sheer ruffled cover-up, almost lingerie style blouse at the same seller’s stall, I knew it would make a great textural contrast against the satin. Plus, white and navy is a really crisp and sharp colour combination and will work really well for an evening event (did I say something about a cruise?). The second blouse is another satin piece but in a light purple. Although contrasts are nice, I thought it would blend in nicely as a more fitted and ‘proper’ shirt with the suit.

how to start an ethical wardrobe - secondhand shopping for autumn fashion

how to start an ethical wardrobe - secondhand shopping for autumn fashion

how to start an ethical wardrobe - secondhand shopping for autumn fashion

how to start an ethical wardrobe - secondhand shopping for autumn fashion

Rings: Middle Finger (Unknown) // Index Finger (Arezzo D’oro Diamond Cut Stacker Ring – Gemporia)*

Speaking of that ruffled blouse, it looks great with the evening dress I managed to pick up! I know not many people are fans of lurex fabric, but I think if worn in the right way, it can look just as elegant as any other sparkly material. As you would have seen in my last outfit post, I love layering slip dresses, and it looks great with any kind of texture or colour. The black shade means I’ll be able to wear it to dinner, but also be able to go for a slightly grungier look in the day. Versatile, non?

Oh and yes, yes that is a cashmere ‘granny jumper’. It was one of those purchases which I was unsure about at first, so I left the charity shop empty handed before going back again and trying it on because it just seemed too tempting. It will work with jeans, it will work with a dress and who knows, maybe it will even work with the suit? I love muted pink, as you will already know if you’ve read my whole post basically dedicated to it.

Oh and that jacket? Another item which I had to go back for. In fact there was shopping drama with this one! I asked the seller if he’d give me a deal because I wasn’t that willing to buy it for his original price of €40 (even though it is vintage leather), so he said he’d drop it to €35, final price. I mulled it over, he put it back out on a rail, and somebody else tried it on… and luckily, they didn’t want it, so I bought it, but only just before another lady asked to try it on. It was a faff, but I have it on my shoulders (and of course, on my arms when I’m actually wearing it out and about). A good point to remember though – jumble or carboot sale shopping allows for bargaining. 

So there we have it! All secondhand. I hope you liked reading about my recent shopping experiences. The reason I do these ‘ethical wardrobe‘ posts, is to try and share with you how easy it is to create a collection you enjoy wearing without having to effect the world and environment around us. Buying secondhand means recycling, giving back to charity and supporting your local communities. Give it a go! See what you can find for £80…

Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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Starting An Ethical Wardrobe | Sale Shoppping*

By August 25, 2015 Ethical

on a tight budgetAfter launching my Ethical Directory it seemed a bit wrong not to actually shop from it, didn’t it? So when Think Money came to me and asked whether I’d like to do a bit of sale shopping and show you how much money I saved, I thought it was the perfect time to add some more to my ethical wardrobe that is slowly starting to grow. Want to see what I picked up? Carry on reading… 🙂

Ethical Fashion Sale Shopping - ASOS Africa & People Tree Zandra Rhodes
Ethical Fashion Sale Shopping - ASOS Africa & People Tree Zandra Rhodes


The task was simple… to go sale shopping and document how much I spent and how much I saved, and it really was quite the challenge. As the benefits of ethical/sustainable fashion often make the price of items go up, it was quite tricky to buy that much with the budget that I had (£50), but I realised, that even with ethical fashion, that’s not the point.

Cutting down on the amount of clothes we buy each year is also a big factor when it comes ethical shopping, on top of making sure those items are produced and manufactured in fair working conditions and with fabrics and materials that are as eco-friendly as they can be. So with 3 items in my basket, I was quite chuffed that I was able to support two brands and the people who made the items.

Ethical Fashion Sale Shopping - ASOS Africa & People Tree Zandra Rhodes

Ethical Fashion Sale Shopping - ASOS Africa & People Tree Zandra Rhodes


The first piece that I knew I had to pick up was this pair of ASOS Africa trousers. You may recognise the print as I have already got the matching blouse (you can see me wearing it here and here). I loved the print so much that I knew I needed these to cover up my legs! They’re actually a crepe material which is slightly odd but they’re still super lovely. You can read more about ASOS Africa here, in case you missed it! They were £16 and are going to make a lovely addition to my wardrobe!

Sale Price – £16.00 // Original Price – £45.00 // How Much I Saved – £29.00

Ethical Fashion Sale Shopping - ASOS Africa & People Tree Zandra Rhodes

Ethical Fashion Sale Shopping - ASOS Africa & People Tree Zandra Rhodes


The next piece I knew I had to pick up was this oversized top from the “Zandra Rhodes with People Tree” collection. The fact that it was Zandra Rhodes did pull me in a bit more than it should have, but so did the price. On sale it was only £16, so in terms of an ethical and fair-trade item of clothing, it was quite a good deal.

It’s a sort of oversized style top that has quite large, almost batwing, sleeves with this abstract print which reminds me of a mix between a rocket ship and a satellite floating in space. I love these sorts of prints and colours as they mix really well with things like my KENZO shorts (second-hand, woop woop).

Sale Price – £16.00 // Original Price – £40.00 // How Much I Saved – £24.00

Ethical Fashion Sale Shopping - ASOS Africa & People Tree Zandra Rhodes

Ethical Fashion Sale Shopping - ASOS Africa & People Tree Zandra Rhodes


Lastly but definitely not least, is this gorgeous little necklace, also from People Tree. I thought it would look perfect with a necklace I have from Accessorize as it has very similar beading and colours. The beads are all glass so it’s actually a lot more sturdy than it may look. I also really like the little “PT” symbol and bird which sit just in the middle. It’s going to be the perfect little layering necklace and a nice reminder that I’m supporting a good cause.

It was made by TARA, a fair-trade group working with artisans in India. TARA has it’s own collection of jewellery with People Tree, all of which are lovely and delicate. What do you think?

Sale Price – £6.00 // Original Price – £14.00 // How Much I Saved – £8.00

I saved… £61.00 in total!

So yes, I saved myself quite a lot pennies didn’t I? Of course with brands like People Tree it’s nice to support them fully, but when you’re a teen like me, or a student, or even if you’re just on a tight budget, saving yourself some money can be a real big help, especially when you want to focus on creating an ethical wardrobe.

I’m chuffed with my purchases and I hope you are too! Let  me know in the comments what you’ve bought in the sales recently! 🙂

(This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Think Money. I was sent £50 to purchase whatever I want. All opinions are 100% honest. You can read my full disclaimer, here.)

  Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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Starting An Ethical Wardrobe | ASOS Africa Give-Away

By July 17, 2015 Competitions, Ethical

Aloha! Well, it’s been a while, hasn’t it? I’m sure most of you would have seen my updates, but if not, I’ve been on a bit of an “accidental” blogging break. I totally ran out of motivation and ideas, but by the looks of things, *fingers crossed*, I’m back! And today, I’m talking all things ethical… (ooh and yes, that title does read “give-away”…)

ASOS Africa 7

ASOS Africa 4

ASOS Africa 10


After watching The True Cost (which is on Netflix now by the way), I have genuinely not purchased anything other than something second hand, and well, this gorgeous blouse. I’m not saying the film will turn you away from shopping and fashion completely (I mean, seriously, who could live without either), but it will definitely change your mindset. Fo’ sure. So, when I was browsing ASOS (as you do), I remembered that they have an ethical line called “ASOS Africa“, and I knew I had to have a nosey!

I straight away, saw this gorgeous blouse that was in the sale and I knew that the jumper I had been eyeing up, would simply be left to be purchased by somebody else… within a few moments, the blouse was paid for. Now, I probably am rather late to the ASOS Africa train, but I still think it’s something to look into. What on earth is it, you say?

ASOS Africa 5

ASOS Africa 8

ASOS Africa 9

ASOS Africa is the collection which is produced by SOKO (a clothing workshop in Kenya). It provides donations from sales and donates them to the workshop and fund. In all, it helps families in Kenya, providing free lunches and on-site childcare. I have to be honest, that I can’t find anywhere else that says much more than that, but I do like the idea that my purchase goes to helping workers more than just a few pence or pounds.

Every ASOS Africa piece is made in Kenya and is part of ASOS’ “Green Room” group. The Green Room is a selection of brands that are either ethical, sustainable or both. Brands like People Tree are part of the group which makes it super easy to shop online, knowing that you’re doing some good.

I’m so glad that I’ve started my ethical wardrobe with a brand I adore and trust. So… with that, I want you to start building your ethical wardrobe too! So, y’know, I made a give-away and all that jazz…

ASOS Africa 2

Give-Away Image


RULES ETC: The give-away is open worldwide (please see ASOS’ delivery guide for more info), and will close on the 27th July 2015. You must select a prize from the selection above. The prize will be purchased by myself, and is in no way partnered with ASOS. If you’re under 13, please get parental permission as I will need your delivery address.

Aren’t I nice? Just follow the instructions above, and one of those items could be yours! Take a peep and see which takes your fancy! 🙂 It’s open worldwide too, so pretty cool, huh? I hope you liked this post and it opened your eyes to something a little bit different. I’ll hopefully speak soon, and in the mean time…. GOOD LUCK! 😀

Lots of Love… Tolly Dolly Posh xx

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