Ethical Fashion

Top from Elizabeth Suzann,
shoes from Olive Thomas shoes (etsy),
Jeans from Madewell
I've been curious about how to stop participating in fast fashion for awhile. After reading about how many lbs of clothes American's throw away a year, to sweat shops, to undervaluing creativity and design (which is a problem that affects my own job) and many other problems with how I've been buying/treating clothes I wanted to change.

I was curious how to waste less, support local/small designers, and save money.

I've come up with a few answers that I've enjoyed living into that I wanted to share.

Tank top from Thred Up
Pants from TopoDesigns

1. I sell or give away my clothing, using the stuff you really can't salvage as rags. I sell to local consignment shops and Thred Up or I drop off bags of clothes at Goodwill.

2. I've been trying to buy clothes of better quality. Real materials- wool, cotton, silk that are made with good construction. This allows my clothes to last longer so I don't have to keep replacing clothes that the wash destroys or that aren't scrubbable, I spill a lot. These pieces are usually more expensive so I don't get things like this often and I have mostly just been replacing basic pieces as my poorly made ones give out. Items include coats, jeans, trousers, sweaters, cardigans, basic staple dresses, and shoes.

Leather jacket -local thrift store
Wool sweater - Thred up
Hat- Lack of color

3. My favorite find was companies like Thred Up and Tradesy. They are like online thrift stores. The thrift stores in Seattle are heavily picked over but online they are hugeI love the idea of something someone else is done with being exactly what I'm looking for. I especially love that it means the items come a steep discount. Need a dress for a wedding- they have tons, for cheap, and for brands I couldn't afford otherwise. I also like these websites for trends. I don't want to spend a lot of money on a pattern I may not like in a year but I can spend $15 on a top that is gently used.
dress I got on Thred up for $23, original price $107.
(Also love that Thred Up tells you how much
money you saved, I blame my mom.
I love a good deal)

4. I've also been compiling a list of USA made designers that I like, designers that support ethical causes and groups, make clothing out of industry scrapes, or small handmade international shops. For about the last year I have been trying to only buy from and ask for clothes as gifts from these designers. I know it can seem like these are always expensive but I have found a wide range of designers and subscribe to their newsletters so I know when they have their change of season sales. Some of the brands below are a bit pricier, albeit stunning, but most have some really reasonably priced items!
skirt from Style Saint
cardigan from Everlane

Matterprints                                Krotchet Kids

some Current favorites:
Krochet Kids
Being Apparel
People Tree
Matter Prints
Temperate Co
Make it Good
Style Saints
Slum Love
Elizabeth Suzann
Up Down Across
Style Saint
Albion Fit
The Palatines
Topo Designs

5. Maybe most importantly, I've also tried to shop less and not impulse buy at all. I don't go perusing stores at my lunch hour anymore and I don't subscribe to newsletters of stores I like but aren't ethical or sustainable. A really amazing tool I use to keep this in check is the Stylebook app.

It lets you put in all your clothing you own, make outfits out of them, follow how often you wear something, how much money per wear an item is, use a calendar to plan out your outfits for the month, pack for trips. I'm honestly a little obsessed! I also never have to wonder what I'm going to wear in the morning, I just look at my calendar. I can plan the whole month so that I know when I  have important meetings and need to wear my power skirt.

Besides how much fun it is- I put items in the remove category if I see I haven't worn it in 6 months. I see if I need to just rework outfits to like the item again or if it's really not me anymore. Then I grab all the items in the remove folder and sell or donate them. I've been trying to do this regularly as I define my style etc. I have a goal of # of clothes I'd like to get down to so I am seeing what I truly don't wear. I don't want to wear anything because I feel like I have to or because I didn't know what else to wear. I've loved knowing I feel like me and look the way I want in every outfit because I only save the outfits in the app that I like.

The other thing I do is bring in clothing items I think I want to purchase. I can see if I already have something like it. Does it go with my other clothes? Can I make multiple outfits with it? If I'm replacing something I look at the cost per wear. If it's really low it means I wear it a lot so it may make sense to spend more money and get a really good quality piece of that item.

tunic by Temperate Co
Necklace by local jewlry co

That is currently my strategy/take on ethical fashion. It seems to be constantly evolving. If you want to chat about it or the app I'd be 100% down to talk!


3 days off, 3 days in the woods

Over labor day weekend Joshua and I did one of the last big hikes he had on his list. We did about 34 miles to the Lyman Lakes and Cloudy Pass, out near Leavenworth. The first day we hiked in about 9 miles to the Upper Lyman Lakes. To get there we had to gain a fair amount of elevation. We also strapped on our boot spikes to make it over about a half mile of snow, uphill! It was exhausting but a fun challenge in its own way.

The entire weekend was so so sunny! Near the lakes we found a flat spot nestled in the trees to set up camp. We ate sandwiches, went to bed kind of early, and woke up in the middle of the night to a great sky-full of stars.

That morning we then woke up to a deer, I named him Gerald, hanging out about 3 feet from our tent. He was happy there so he just hung around while we made breakfast, so we made a new friend.

Strapped our packs back on and hiked about 8 more miles up into Cloudy Pass. Found a stellar shaded campsite that we dumped our packs at. Took a bit of time to hike up Cloudy Peak to grab some views of Glacier, I love all the fluffy white bear grass among all the spiky vegetation. We ate huckleberries, hiked back down to sneak in a nap in our hammock. Took a mini hike toward Suiattle Pass and pumped water. Then we made dinner that night, played games in our tent until sunset, hopped out to grab some sunset photos and to eat this weird mudslide backpacking dessert Joshua had bought, and went to bed

Final morning we packed up early, started our approximately 17 mile hike out that day. We broke it up with some lovely rest stops. My favorite was next to one of the waterfalls near Upper Lyman Lakes. We dropped our packs where we couldn't see anyone, soaked our feet in the water, and lounged around eating snacks for about half an hour. Took our last break in Spider Meadow, tried to wash the sunscreen and dirt from our limbs.

Once we were home we ran around looking for someplace with nachos or wings open, but all were closed, so we had to settle, haha not really settling, for pizza.

It was great to fit in one big backpacking trip before the season starts to tend toward rain.