Because its easier to be sustainable if you avoid temptation!
My Instagram feed had become a little stale until recently. I hadn’t actively sought out any new accounts for ages, and although I still love my old favourite faces on those little squares, once I gave up shopping I needed something new to inspire me that didn’t involve heading out to the high street. Because it’s really hard to slow down your fashion habits if all you’re faced with is the temptation to buy more stuff.
I’ve heard from a lot of you who have unfollowed fashion influencer accounts recently; I’ve hidden a few myself who are constantly pushing newness, which feels rather off in our current climate (excuse the pun), but I’m happy that many ARE slowing down while still offering great ideas as far as styling is concerned, as well as encouraging us all to keep hold of our clothes for longer. I’m keen not to get all evangelical about this and make people on a different stage of their sustainability journey feel alienated, because I’m a firm believer that opening conversations is the one of the best things we can do.
But…I am finding new brilliant people every day, and I thought it would be nice to share some of the best – and most stylish – slow fashion advocates with you all in one place. You’re welcome.
Evelina Utterdahl wore the same dress every day for 30 days (this one). Much like my own pledge to buy nothing new for a year, she did this to change her opinion about fashion, and to highlight that we all need to consume less. She’s also a climate activist and blogger – you can follow her at @earthwanderess.
I feel like I’ve found a kindred spirit with Jade, not least because of our shared love of a pair of wide legged striped trousers! As the name suggests, @notbuyingnew doesn’t buy new clothes, instead preferring to shop at charity shops. She creates seasonal capsule wardrobes, and shares really clever styling tips to make the most out of items, such as wearing a cross-body bag around her waist (as I’ve shamelessly copied for the picture of me at the beginning of this article!).
As well as being the self-proclaimed queen of charity shopping, @emsladedmondson is a sustainable fashion consultant, so she knows her stuff. I absolutely love Emma’s style – she always looks fantastic and is a fan of bright colours, like me!
READ MORE: THE BEST SUSTAINABLE JUMPSUITS
This is one of those has-it-all accounts that will make you want to paint your walls and sort out your house plant situation as well. @candicemtay lives in Toronto where she keeps a diary of her slow fashion outfits, which are always gorgeous.
I recently acquired a sewing machine and am going to learn how to make my own clothes (because it’s obviously the next logical step). So I was thrilled to discover @abolajiooo, who is a dab hand with a needle and thread. And forget anything that actually looks homemade – see this lovely T-shirt for details.
READ MORE: I MADE MY OWN SHOES
Lovely @laurenbravo is a brilliant writer, and she’s also been on a similar journey to me. Having given up shopping over a year ago she released her book ‘How To Break Up With Fast Fashion’ in January. It’s such a helpful tool if you’re slowing down on your fashion purchases and also want to learn more about why shopping is so damaging to both people and the planet.
As well as having great sustainable style, @jesswithless is 5ft, which piques this fellow *almost* petite girl’s interest (I’m 5ft3). A lot of the brands she wears aren’t necessarily available in the UK, but she’s great for giving you styling ideas (as well as straw bag/hat envy).
READ MORE: HOW TO LOAN YOUR WARDROBE
I like to think of @ajabarber as my regular kick up the arse. And I mean this in the best possible way! She is always striving to do better and inspire others to do the same with regards to fashion, inclusivity and intersectionality. She’s also introduced me to some cracking British brands like Stalf, which she is wearing here.
At just 19 years-old, I’m somewhat in awe of @tollydollyposh, who is an ethical and sustainable fashion activist as well as a very stylish young lady. Follow her for updates on what she’s doing with her local Extinction Rebellion group; she is also a talented illustrator and makes climate change-related Gifs which are a brilliant way of getting a serious message across in a digestible manner to a younger generation.
A student based in Edinburgh, @mikaelaloach is another young activist I have huge admiration for. She focuses on ethical fashion and inclusivity.
Sophie is a sustainable fashion journalist, penning pieces for publications including The Guardian and Refinery 29. She’s also just started an allotment which I am following keenly! @sophiebenson
Amma’s Instagram tagline is ‘style and sustainability are not mutually exclusive’ and I couldn’t agree more. Amma also writes a blog where she delves deeper into sustainable fashion issues. @styleand.sustain
Gillian’s account @uncomplicatedspaces is one of those great spaces for getting styling inspo. She’s a big fan of a wardrobe challenge, regularly setting them and inviting others to join in.
Lovely Caroline from @knickers_models_own started a year of frugal fashion in 2014 as a way of raising money for charity after she lost her mother to cancer. But it’s since become a way of life; she’s an inspiration for any charity shop lover.
I’m a sucker for a colour palette, and Rebekah’s is most definitely black and white with a touch of red! @rebekahlpeters showcases some cracking vintage fashion (and sells it too).
Clare Press is Vogue Australia’s Sustainability Editor, and her knowledge on the subject is unrivalled. She also has a brilliant podcast called Wardrobe Crisis which is well worth a listen. Head to @mrspress for more.
Proving that sustainable fashion isn’t all about hemp and hessian, Venetia’s glossy account is also an education, with regular stats and facts that will make you stop and think before you shop. @venetiafalconer
I love Brianna’s minimal style, and I especially like this hat that she wears a lot! Her muted colour palette is a joy. A second hand and slow fashion advocate, you can follow her at @theconstantcloset.
Who is inspiring you to be more sustainable? Leave comments below.