When I planned this post late last year, I had intended for it to be a chat about simply adding more eco-friendly pieces of clothing into my wardrobe. But since then, the brand at the heart of these outfit photos – Cheap Monday – have announced they’re closing their doors, and it sparked something in me. I felt incredibly sad for the company and their employees, and it made me want to review my own shopping habits and make a few changes going into the new year.
Dress: Cheap Monday via ASOS
Coat: Star by Julien Macdonald
Boots: Nasty Gal
Bag: Vivienne Westwood
In most areas of my life, I consume fairly consciously. My home decor is pretty minimalist, and I carefully curate the items I bring into our apartment. I eat a plant-based diet and recycle diligently, but I’m by no means perfect – I just try to do my best. With clothing it’s sometimes a little different. My wardrobe features a blend of high-street staples, affordable-chic finds and a few luxury items, and I do have a habit of sticking to the same places to find new clothes. I am selective with what I buy, but being a fashion blogger I do end up having to purchase things quickly for shoots, and occasionally style up something I don’t necessarily love as I’m keen to ‘try it out’. I’ve made a couple of fashion resolutions for 2019 that I’d like to share with you today – they’re baby steps, but I do believe that the little things can add up to make a big difference.
Smaller Brands, I’m Looking At You
We all know how tempting it can be to mindlessly stick to the same old places when purchasing, well, anything really! For 2019, I’m going to make a real effort to discover more small clothing companies, rather than automatically heading to the sites of the big hitters. It’s always gutting when a smaller brand ceases to trade (even ones backed by larger companies, like Cheap Monday) as you know it all started off as someone’s dream and passion project.
As we know, we’re facing some uncertain times in this country (don’t get me started…) and I’m keen to spend the cash I do set aside for style pieces on some more independent brands, so I’m going to consciously browse smaller sites as a first port of call. If you’re not sure where to start, ASOS is a great road in to finding lesser-known labels. Be sure to check out the Marketplace section of their site, too!
The 2019 Trend I Hope Sticks Around: Sustainability
Now, I’m not saying that I’m going to give up my hauls from the more affordable fashion brands I love (you know Nasty Gal has my heart) but I am determined to delve deeper into the world of eco-friendly fashion too. I was first drawn to this Cheap Monday dress because of its awesome Clueless vibes, but was excited to find out that it’s made from 100% organic cotton and boasts sustainability credentials, too. It’s just one more reason I’m upset about the brand’s time trading coming to an end, but I’m looking forward to finding more fabulous labels to love.
For me, sustainability starts at home, too. A pair of jeans or shoes last as long as you want them to – you’ve got to be mindful and take care of your style favourites. It can be tricky, especially when you live in a city (there’s only so long a pair of boots will look awesome after being continually scuffed and scraped on the streets of Manchester) but I firmly believe that it’s important to treat your belongings with love. This coat from Star by Julien Macdonald is my new favourite, and I’m determined to keep it looking tip top. The Vivienne Westwood bag you see here was a birthday present from my super kind husband, and although pricey it is amazingly well-made and will last me forever. I love that feeling.
Planning Ahead To Break The Cycle
This might sound strange, but lately I’ve become hyper-aware of the impact of how I shop. I’m talking about online orders in particular…everything is so accessible now that we can easily forget about what goes on behind the scenes. In the past I’ve been guilty of panic-buying items at the last minute. I pay for premium accounts with a few of the big online clothing retailers so I pretty much always have free next day delivery, and it’s really tempting to over-use the function. On occasion, I’ve done a couple of separate orders across the same day because I’ve spotted new things, and need them for tomorrow. It’s a pretty wasteful way of shopping, as you generate double the packaging and potentially double the delivery requirements, if they’re dispatched in different time slots.
I really want to make sure I plan things ahead to avoid this panic-buying. I’m talking outfits for shoots, occasions and events. The more time I give myself, the more time I’ll have to reflect, and potentially realise that I don’t even need to buy something new. Alongside this, I’ve started to re-organise all of my clothing using the KonMari method so I can easily see what I already have. It’s working wonders so far!
I hope you’ve enjoyed my thoughts on style and being more conscious with how I shop and consume fashion. What are your style resolutions for 2019? I’d love to know!