As Sel­fridges’ Ma­te­rial World pro­motes eco-friendly fash­ion, and Fash­ion Rev­o­lu­tion Week takes place, Ko­hi­noor Sa­hota looks at the shops cham­pi­oning sus­tain­able cloth­ing and shoes across the capital

Where London - - Contents -

We show you how easy it is to be green with our pick of ecofriendly stores that sell ev­ery­thing from sta­tionery to shoes.

While most peo­ple agree with eth­i­cal fash­ion – mak­ing gar­ments in fair work­ing con­di­tions, while pro­tect­ing an­i­mals and the en­vi­ron­ment – it can be hard to find places where you can shop with

a clear con­science. We have helped make that search eas­ier by find­ing stores where you can buy clothes that are not only eth­i­cal, but stylish and af­ford­able, too.

Step for­ward Sel­fridges. The depart­ment store (p. 51) is known for be­ing for­ward-think­ing: last year it opened a the­atre in the store, and col­lab­o­rated with singer Beth Ditto on a plus-size col­lec­tion. This year, Ma­te­ri­alWorld (to 31 Mar) sees the shop launch a cam­paign with the motto ‘buy­ing bet­ter, in­spir­ing change’.

Linda Hew­son, cre­ative di­rec­tor of Sel­fridges, says: ‘ Ma­te­ri­alWorld will ex­am­ine sus­tain­able tex­tile de­vel­op­ment, with a fo­cus on so­cial, lo­cal and global pro­duc­tion sto­ries. The pro­ject will ex­plore cur­rent prob­lems and their im­pact as well as pre­sent­ing so­lu­tions and ideas, with hon­esty and hu­mour, in a re­tail en­vi­ron­ment. Through Ma­te­ri­alWorld, we want to in­vite con­sumers and the in­dus­try to re­fash­ion the way we think about our clothes, and how we talk about sus­tain­abil­ity.’

Eight young de­sign­ers – who use ma­te­ri­als such as plas­tic, leather and cot­ton in sur­pris­ing ways – are be­ing cham­pi­oned by the store, be­cause of their sus­tain­able out­look. Dutch brand Dick Moby uses Bio Acetate and 97 per cent re­cy­cled plas­tic to make its frames, while menswear brand Ten­gri uses Fair­trade Mon­go­lian yak hair in its knits.

You don’t have to look too far to find eth­i­cal in­de­pen­dent shops in the capital, too. When Kate Richards no longer en­joyed her job, she de­cided to set up her own shop.

‘Frus­trated by the poor qual­ity of most things in my wardrobe, and unin­spired by high-street shops, I be­gan to seek out clothes that had a story be­hind them,’ she ex­plains. Es­tab­lished in 2012, The Keep in Brix­ton sells men’s and women’s wear and stocks brands in­clud­ing Ace & Jig, Peo­ple Tree and Des­mond & Dempsey ( GranvilleAr­cade, 32Cold­har­bourLane,SW98PR).

Any­one for ve­gan shoes? Cou­ple An­gela and James set up The Third Es­tate in Cam­den, which also stocks eth­i­cal cloth­ing and ac­ces­sories for men and women.

‘It’s so im­por­tant to have the chance to see an item, ask ques­tions about it and make sure it’s just right,’ they say ( 27Brec­knockRd,N70BT ).

If you love sleek aes­thet­ics, visit Fam­ily Tree in Clerken­well, Lon­don’s de­sign quar­ter. Opened by Takaka Copeland, a Cen­tral Saint Martins grad­u­ate, and Jo Water­house, an artist, de­signer and an­tique dealer, the shop sells sta­tionery, jew­ellery and home­ware made by lo­cal crafts­peo­ple ( 53Ex­mouthMar­ket,EC1R4QL). Mean­while, next month, Fash­ion Rev­o­lu­tion

Week (24-30 Apr) takes place in coun­tries as far flung as Zim­babwe and Paraguay. Rais­ing aware­ness about the cost of fash­ion, Lon­don venues rang­ing from Som­er­set House to the House of Com­mons will play host to cat­walks and talks ( www.fash­ion­rev­o­lu­

Clock­wise from this im­age: Tor­toise, Com­mu­nity Cloth­ing and Dead­wood, all avail­able at Sel­fridges’ Ma­te­ri­alWorld

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