I am in the process of deciding on the look and feel of a documentary I am making. I have been spending countless hours researching and watching anything that might inspire me. Anything that might help me create a stunning dramatic film. Well to my surprise, I just stumbled upon something pretty awesome, which also just happens to be from an organic fashion brand. (something I can post on G Living YEAH!) A short film by Fin Oslo called FIN Feline. Beautiful dramatic visuals of a model, a cat, a horse and some water. Oh and yes organic clothing.
Is the fashion line a must have? I don’t know yet, but the video stopped me in my tracks and definitely makes me want to know more. How about you? What do you think? Aria said… too slow.
Behind The Scenes – FIN Feline shot on Phantom HD Gold
I think the key to this thing we call G Living is to just dive right in. Open up your eyes, let in all the beauty around you. It’s there waiting to be re-discovered, waiting to be seen a new again. And nothing for me brings in the joy of just being more than cutting through the air on the back of a bike.
I personally have two bikes, one electric, the A2B by Ultramotor and one carbon fiber road bike by Kestrel. I love them both equally but they perform two very different transportation task for me. The Kestrel is about being connected to the road, feeling every bump, feeling the power of your own body moving you down the road. It’s about being a powerful force, which is an amazing feeling, that is if you are not too concerned about how you might smell once the ride has come to an end.
This opens up a whole world of destinations and more importantly it enables you to dress for the occasion and not the ride.
Now the A2B electric bike is a whole other story. It’s about taking you for a ride. The bike is the powerful one. Your job is to hold on and enjoy the ride, There is no effort, no worries, and most importantly no sweating. This opens up a whole world of destinations and more importantly it enables you to dress for the occasion and not the ride.
It’s pretty rare here on the west coast to see an out spoken style driven “G” guy. I would say most of the guys on the west coast who lean green, tend to take their style cues from actor Charlton Heston, in the Planet of The Ape movies and not so much so from Brad Pitt. I don’t know what it is about living in L.A. compared to New York City, but style just doesn’t seem to be important. This is why when I came across Joshua Katcher and his site The Discerning Brute, I secretly thought to myself, there maybe hope yet for the vegan / G man. Come on, how in the world, are we ever going to have a “G” James Bond, if we don’t have any out spoken men pointing the way to green fashion alternatives.
The women in the green movement have it made, relatively that is, compared to us guys, the start-up green fashion brands, such as Stewart+Brown, exclusively focus on women. Now I completely understand why, (green guys are cheap) but it just makes the transition from toxic to organic incredibly hard for potential newbie green guys. For example, try buying a suit or some dress shoes which don’t include leather, wool or some other non vegan, organic, cruelty free materials and actually looks good. You will find out quickly you have about 2 options and non of them are in a store near you. Your only real option is to basically gamble by going online and buying from the three or four site that actually exist. But to make it even harder and more expensive, it turns out most of the cooler stuff you might find comes from England, which means higher prices and major shipping issues. Or your second option is to give up and buy some organic T-Shirts and jeans.
This is where Joshua steps in. On his blog Discerning Brute, he does the hard part for us guys. He finds what is cool out there, who are the hot new designers and even breaks down how green this stuff really is. On top of that, he sits down with designers, fashion leaders and even does the occasional street interview in an effort to bring home a little fashion reality to his fellow New Yorkers. Continue Reading / See Additional Photos
Everyone should know by now I live in London, but I am not really English. I am what you would call a mutt, if I was a dog. I have a little bit of blood from almost every type of culture on the planet. A pinch of French, a dash of English, a smig of Spanish, and a whole lot of other strains I couldn’t even identify, but I know they are in there. All this blood mixture has made me a bit more dark, than your average English girl. You see, the girls around me tend to be more the English purebreds dull types. You know them when you see them on the street, they all have that chocky, blump, and grim face look. For a long time I thought that was just what my fellow mates looked like, but I was wrong. It’s all the dairy, beer and fried fish they suck down. As soon as I started hanging with the G Living crowd, everyone started looking a bit more human or should I say Monkie.
My point is, and I have one, is that G Women just seem to look better and when you look better, you feel better. And when you feel good, you also, feel a whole lot sexier. Which leads me to my point. G Women may feel sexy, but when it comes to vegan / organic options in the Lingerie department, we are completely left out in the cold. We don’t want chemical laden fabrics, we want soft organic sexy fabrics and designs.
Lucky for all of us, dark brooding, 1950 loving “G” club hopping girls, Jennifer Ambrose has created Enamore Limited a vintage Lingerie / Fashion House.
Julia: Why did you start with a eco / green lingerie line? Did you have experience designing lingerie?
Jennifer:Enamore started as a clothing label in 2004 and in 2006 I decided I wanted to create lingerie with the same principle as my clothing range. I didn’t have the skill to make lingerie myself so I approached designer Ayten Gasson to collaborate. The first collections were a mix of hemp/silk and vintage prints, which were a big hit with my customers. In the beginning we were fulfilling all the order from Ayten’s studio so each piece was hand made. Further down the line we parted company to focus on our own ideas. I took over the design work and started to work with a production unit in South Wales.
Launched in New York City back in 2004 by Rogan Gregory and Scott Hahn, Loomstate is quite simply the coolest ethical demin line around. The name itself maybe derived from a century old term for just-woven fabric but the result is timeless, effortlessly casual and quintessentially American. With a firm foundation in jeans and tees — which now extends to hoodies, shoes and beyond — Loomstate not only creates its garments from certified organic cotton, its fashion forward designs also create demand for these garments.
When it comes to ethical fashion, it doesn’t get much cooler than Social Atelier. The LA-based T-shirt line can be found at the most desirable shopping addresses, both physical and virtual. With an opinion on everything — from Barbie’s vitals and the war in Iraq, to AIDS and global warming — they’re not afraid to speak the TRUTH. Their signature big bold fonts will be as permanently etched onto your retina as they are on their buttery soft 100% organic cotton tees. We caught up Social Atelier co-founder and co-designer, Andrei Najjar.
This year shopping for green fashion is a mixed bag. Yes there are way more shops online and in your local neighborhoods, but the actual brand choices seem to be pretty limited still. Some of the brands, which tried to come out big, ended up failing and other brands have had to stay small as the economy takes a downward turn.
One of the big hopeful brands was NAU. Twenty some million later, the company all but closed down, as it ran out of capital to keep the doors open. Lucky for us and them, the brand quickly re-emerged as a small lighter company with a full online store. Since they have closed all physical locations, the best place to find NAU at the best price is on their site, nau.com. The NAU style fits the urban athletic type, who is looking for clothing which performs and will look at home on the streets of New York. Colors are classic and the cuts are all modern.
Big NAU shopping tip. Get on their mailing list, since they email out sale announcements directly to existing customers first. You can really score great deals, up to 50% if you get in there fast.
Stewartbrown.com | My next favorite green fashion store has to be Stewar+Browns own online store at stewartbrown.com. Stewart+Brown are one of those small fashion labels, who care about every aspect of the business. They spend a lot of time and care in sourcing and designing the fabrics which they use in their designs. Also, Stewart+Browns designs are just so pretty and well made. The only real issue, is finding their full line of clothing in any single store. This is why going direct to their own store is your best bet, if you really want to find exactly what you want. The down side is less sells. But you can always shop around.
BTCelements.com | The best part of BTC Elements has to be the founder herself, Summer Bowen. Summer has been a friend to G Living from day one. You can see her in many of our early shows and the Elizabeth Kucinich Eco-Make-over show. Summer loves green fashion and has a great eye. Her online store is a fresh place to find the hot upcoming designers.
Here is what Summer has to say about BTC Elements:Modern, eye-catching, uniquely crafted, BTC Elements combines smart style with sustainability. We hand-select each item in our boutique collection of fashion, gifts, and accessories with an eye to the environment and social justice. The result: Fresh, inspiring designs that are both earth friendly and ethically sourced.
Because we work closely with small designers and artists who share our passion, our online boutique carries many one-of-a-kind items you won’t find anywhere else. Our goal is to delight you with our distinctive collection of mindful products while providing value and excellent service.
Thegreenloop.com | As ethical clothing gains popularity and visibility, the all important question is where can you buy them? The internet is a great option for those who don’t live in urban centers, as well as those of us who are too lazy to leave our laptops. So, here are some suggestions on where to make some socially conscious sartorial purchases:
Greenloop offers the most complete selection of progressive, sustainable apparel as well as accessories, footwear and beauty products. Owner Aysia Wright constantly scans the market for new innovations and creative talent. From EDUN to Loomstate to Perfectly Imperfect, the result is a mix of big names and new designers, and the no nonsense layout is easy to navigate. What’s more, Greenloop gives 1% of profits to environmental causes and is striving to become ‘carbon neutral’ by offsetting shipping generated carbon.
Beklina.com | Beklina has a sweet, graphic layout that is instantly appealing. I like that the brand isn’t immediately evident. It’s not until you the click thru that you find out which designer you’ve been drawn to. On top of apparel and accessories, paper products and other “nest” items like ceramics are available. I especially like the supercute jewelry by Malin.
Cocosshoppe.com | Coco’s Shoppe.com may resemble a more traditional on-line boutique, but closer examination reveals cutting-edge ethical brands like Bahar Shapar and Spring and Clifton. They also carry items like innovative hemp and silk lingerie by Enamore. What sets Coco’s apart, however, are their organic beauty products like ginger soymilk wash by Hamadi and exquisitely packaged cosmetics by Rosie Jane.
Shopmodify.com | Modify is “founded upon a lifestyle that has proven one does not have to sacrifice great style and exquisite taste to go green”. Which is welcome news to any socially aware fashionista, especially one looking to drop $2,950 on a turquoise Beverlywood Regency Chair made from organic cotton and FSC certified wood. The site also features a vintage section with some breathtaking handbags.
greenwithglamour.com | Green with Glamour is founded by two Chicago-bred friends, Kathleen Rowan and Deana Bracken. GWG looks more magazine than website, featuring quotes from Walt Whitman and Coco Chanel as well as a personal shopper service. The sustainable clothing range is small but selective and is complemented by a beautiful homewares and gift ideas, which you can wrap up in recycled wrapping paper. And I definitely approve of glamour spelt with a u.
Todays exclusive interview is with fashion designer and stylist Kate D’Arcy. Kate started the Toggery Collection to combine the idea of sustainability with her innate sense of style.
G Monkie: Kate, when you decided to start a new fashion line, what previous experience did you have with fashion?
Kate: I have a background in styling which has given me an amazing understanding on what fits and looks best on most body types, how to style and accessorize different pieces (old and new) to make them work best. Most importantly what shapes and styles are truly effortless, seasonless, classic…the kind of styles every woman needs in her closet to help make everything else wearable.
Photography by Stefan Arni and his directing partner SIggi Kinski
This week we are lucky to have an exclusive interview with the founders of the fashion house SUST. With the seeds of their company planted in California, these two women, Marion McKee and Tristan Gribbin, have set out to make a mainstream fashion brand, with a green core. They are committed to designing desirable clothing, which looks and feels great, using only the finest 100% organicly grown cottons. They have even committed to having all their garments made in Northern California to ensure all workers are fairly treated, while receiving sustainable wages. Not your typical fashion company business model by a long shot. I guess they didn’t get the insiders handbook to creating a global brand on the cheap. You know the standard chemical / near slave labor production cycle. Isn’t that the right path to creating a main stream brand?
G Monkie: Tristan / Marion, your company is fairly new, only starting in 2008. When you jumped in to create this new fashion brand, what previous experience did you and how did you know what you wanted. to create?
Marion McKee, Co-Founder: I have fourteen years experience as an accessory designer with my own line Marion McKee Designs, which sells in specialty stores and boutiques across the nation. I also owned a skateboard/snowboard shop of street wear trends in the 1990’s in the heart of San Francisco’s Haight Street District. All my experience has stemmed from my love of fashion when I was in school and the merchandising and design classes I took in college.
Tristan Gribbin, Co-Founder: I have a background in theater and entertainment and have seen eye to eye with Marion on style since we’ve been friends in the seventh grade. When we were in junior high we were always sketching punk and new wave designs and passing them around in class! And then, when we were in high school we were Mods and that is still a heavy influence in our style and our designs for SUST today.
What do you get when you mix a pop icon with a celebrity animal activist? If you’re lucky, you get creative force with a firm consciousness. But did Stella McCartney inherit the best of two impressive gene pools?
Following the creation of her first garment at age 12, McCartney’s signature style of sharp tailoring with sexy femininity began to emerge, eventually earning popularity among celebrities, like style icon Kate Moss, and eco-worshipping fashionistas worldwide. In keeping with her lifelong vegetarian lifestyle, Stella’s lines eschew leather and fur. She also has a co-partnership with Adidas and designs her own skincare and fragrance lines, both of which are strictly organic.
In 1969, Easy Rider the film launched the career of Jack Nicholson and marked the birth of independent cinema in America. In 2000, Easy Rider the jean launched LA designer Mik Serfontaine’s eponymous label and the West Coast denim movement.
Serfontaine is the brand of choice for many A-list derrieres, from Britney to Beyoncé, from J.Lo to Jen. Young Hollywood style mavens Mischa Barton, Kate Hudson, Sienna Miller and Wentworth Miller also can’t get enough.
Serfontaine is creation of South African born designer, Mik Serfontaine. Leaving home at 18, Mik traveled the world before settling in the city of angles. A stint at design school led to the opening of his first boutique on Venice’s Abbot Kinney in 1995.
I had a few moments to catch up with Tim Gunn at the Bryant Park Hotel for his conference with PETA on the fur industry. Tim is an outspoken advocate for animals used in the fashion industry, and calls for responsibility and accountability from every single person using or wearing the skin of an animal – whether it is fur, leather, or wool.