SUMMER EDIT: LOOK 3
Probably the best summer since '76? Therefore in my lifetime? Well, that's what the records say! So whilst I love a pair of cut-off shorts abroad I don't always feel at home in them on the streets of London — after all this isn't Cali and I'm not surfing... but teamed with a colourful kimono I feel loud, proud and super feminine. This extra bit of coverage keeps me ready to whip it round myself into something smarter if I have to go into, say, Sainsbo's (keeps the chiller cabinet chill off the legs too!). This Rianna and Nina one is pure luxury — made from vintage silk scarves, it can take you from day to night (see here for a short version) but you can pick up vintage everyday kimono pieces for less than £20 from vintage shops like Beyond Retro and from carboots for £2. I've worn this with another style upgrade, a double-velcro, gold heart sneaker from Camilla Elphick, comfy with a touch of glam and a handpainted calico top — another example of embellishing an everyday fabric. The woven clutch ties it altogether.
RIANNA + NINA
Rianna and Nina met by chance at a vintage furniture fair where they quickly realised that they both share a passion for vintage fabric, vibrant prints, travelling and a positive way of living. In 2014, Rianna + Nina was born. The kimonos in their collection, one of their signature designs, are crafted from vintage silk scarves and made in Germany.
Bug clothing was founded in East London by Amy Ward, who wanted to create garments by hand that reflect the ideology that we should all buy less and admire quality and consideration over quantity. Using only natural fibres as the foundation of their garments, every piece will be slightly different as each is made by Bug on a very small scale. The materials Bug use are deadstock from designer factory waste, so although they can never be 100% sure of the composition, they make every effort to ensure that it is natural. That way the brand isn't contributing to the reproduction of new materials and instead makes use of excess.
British designer Camilla Elphick launched her label in 2014, driven by a lifelong passion for shoes and a firm belief that good footwear makes a lasting impression. Camilla cites New York as a key source of inspiration. It was there that she designed her first shoe, while studying at Parsons and living in the vibrant East Village. The Camilla Elphick collection focuses on luxurious premium, ethically sourced materials and bespoke prints, handmade and produced in Europe. The brand has also been awarded Positive Luxury’s Butterfly Mark, rewarding the business’s commitment to sustainability.
ETHICAL STORIES, ETHICAL ME
Ethical Stories, Ethical Me's sustainable clutch handbags are handcrafted by empowered female artisans working within an Artisan Academy in Metro Manila, in the Philippines, using eco-friendly materials.
MATT & NAT
MATT & NAT stands for MAT(T)ERIAL + NATURE. An entirely vegan brand, the company uses sustainable materials such as cork and rubber in its designs. The linings of handbags are made from 100% recycled plastic bottles. MATT & NAT is incredibly vigilant in the factories it uses and currently only produces in factories that operate by the SA8000 standard, which ensures quality work conditions for all.