How I Shop Sustainably

As another Earth Day passes by, I’m left feeling guilty about the plastic bag I forgot to decline at Ulta the other day. I’m also left feeling a little hopeless, to be honest. Our climate change situation feels more dire than ever, and I wonder if enough is being done to curb its effects. I have to ask myself, what can I do to make real and lasting change? As a style blogger, I feel a responsibility to admit that the fashion industry is not the most sustainable model. Fast fashion seems to be taking over our news feeds with new items and new sales pushing us to consume more every week. I feel like we all need to be a little more conscious of the effect our consumerism has on the environment. In an effort to change my own habits, here are three ways I’m shopping more sustainably. sustainable-fashion-1

1. Buy less. This one is scary, I know. But if you focus on buying quality instead of quantity, you can get there. This is part of the reason I started a capsule wardrobe. I want to own less. By focusing on only the high-quality functional items I truly love, I can achieve that goal and make less of an impact on the environment. This J.Crew camel coat is something I wear constantly. It’s functional and I love the style. It’s something I intend on keeping forever.

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2. Buy secondhand. If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know that I love a good thrifted item. The craziest/best part is that you can find items with the tags still on or like new. And now there are so many secondhand shopping options out there: Poshmark, eBay, thredUP, and many more. In Pittsburgh and Cleveland, we have Avalon Exchange and Clothes Mentor. This brocade skirt I wore for New Year’s Eve this year is just one example of my thrifting scores.

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3. Buy from Sustainable Brands. More sustainable brands are available than ever before and I feel like more are going to keep cropping up. Reformation, Patagonia, and my personal favorite, Everlane. I feel like I never stop talking about their loafers. They are my favorite pair of shoes. I’m also obsessed with their Day Market Tote. It’s my everyday bag and it’s roomy enough for my work laptop.

2015 Goodwill Good Style Show Recap

Left: Banana Republic Blazer / Star Vixen Dress  Right: Jones New York Jacket / Hudson Jeans / American Eagle Shirt

The Goodwill Good Style Fashion Show was a blast from beginning to end. If you haven’t been following, every year Goodwill gives me and fellow bloggers money to purchase and style outfits from Goodwill that are worn for a runway show.

My theme this year was “Cleveland in Bloom”. With all of the new and exciting things happening in Cleveland lately, I felt like it was the right moment to celebrate the city’s renaissance with the vibrant colors and patterns of spring.The picture above is of two of my fabulous models Kali and Soul. Follow the jump to see more looks from the show!

I was so lucky to have my friends from college modeling in the show. It made hair and makeup and cocktail hour that much more fun. I was also happy to have my parents and both sisters in tow. They did so much to help including my mom hemming the striped top below as well as being in the audience to support me.

Models walked down the runway to Jungle Drum by Emiliana Torrini followed by Soft Shock by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Hair and makeup was kept natural to complement the already beautiful models. The flower pins were all hand made.

Liberty of London for Target Dress

Liz Claiborne Top and Skirt

Ann Taylor Cardigan / H&M Skirt / Life Stride Shoes

Far left outfit: Boohoo Top / Express Dress

I wore a simple black dress with a handmade floral pin.

At the end of the night, we had to take a look at the view outside of Windows on the River. And just because it is just too funny not to share, here is a picture of me strutting my stuff down the runway. Hot stuff, right?

Get inspired by the other bloggers who participated:

Dina’s Days
Midwest Muse
Abby & Elle Upstairs Fashion
Dearest Darling
Glam and Grace

Men’s Style: Goodwill

Congratulations to Kelly who won the tickets to the Goodwill Good Style Fashion Show! 

I’ve been back to Goodwill a few more times since my first shopping trip for the show. My biggest challenge so far has been trying to find a “modern” pair of men’s pants in both the right length and waist size.

My friend who is modeling in the show was very patient with me as I texted him pictures of men’s pants from the Goodwill dressing room. Our conversations went like this:

Me: “Do you think this pant leg looks a little wide?”
My Friend: “Don’t you think with the recent trend in slim leg pants?”

Let’s just say the pants I was asking him about were not very stylish.

Luckily, I found a pair of pants that I think have a modern look and are the right size. After sharing the pants saga with my boyfriend, he suggested enlisting the help of a tailor. Find a pair of pants that fit in the waist — a tailor can’t make pants bigger — and have them taken in or hemmed. Lesson learned!

What tricks have you learned for shopping at Goodwill?

To see all of my looks, buy tickets for the Goodwill Good Style Show at Living Social. The show takes place at 6 p.m. on Thursday, May 7 at Windows on the River

Thrifted: Bright Blazer

Thrifted jacket / Ralph Lauren top / H&M pants / Nine West shoes / The Limited necklace /Loft headband / Ray Ban wayfarers
Today’s outfit felt very Audry Hepburn in any one of her films abroad. The short jacket, black pants and striped shirt have a 50s/60s European vibe to them, no? I found this jacket at the thrift store a while ago. The jacket is slightly big, but because it hits right above the hip, I think it still works paired with a slim silhouette like these skinny black pants. Although this jacket was probably either worn in the 80s or by a sassy retiree, the classic cut keeps it current and the bright pink color on trend right now.

Diagonal lines

Isaac Mizrahi started his collaboration with Target in 2003, and was one of the first to do so. When I came across this dress at the thrift store the other day, I knew I had to have it. It bore the name of the Target/Mizrahi colab on its tag and that reminded me of when Target started getting more stylish, and when I too, started to look at style and fashion more closely. The collaboration took place right before I started college and ended right after I graduated. This dress stood out as something unique and fun, and it made me think this whole thrift store idea actually works. I have to give credit to some of the bloggers who make it look so easy on their blogs, where I look for inspiration.

Bloggers who thrift:
Jen Loves Kev
Kansas Couture
My Edit
My Style Pill
District of Chic

Isaac Mizrahi for Target dress, thrifted: $8; Nine West Pumps; Antique pearl necklace; Nordstrom cardie; Pac Sun sunglasses; Macy’s pearl earrings; Kennneth Cole watch: gifted from the boy