Eco-boutiques are popping up all over the web thanks to visionary retailers willing to take risks. While the debate over green consumption asks tough questions (is marketing lots of green stuff the answer to our consumerism woes?), it is clear that when it comes to eco fashion, the mantra is quality over quantity.
While some sites carry tried and true lines we’ve been following for years, others are peddling cutting edge sustainable fashion – making conscious consumption more provocative than ever.
Here’s a list of what I consider the top 10 eco boutiques. Have at ’em!
I just can’t convey how much I love this site, from the photos to the clothes. Always clean and easy to navigate, Beklina loves their indie designers and is willing to experiment with styles other boutiques are hesitant to try.
Beklina’s site says “Our fashion is modern organic, reflecting Northern California’s grace and beauty,” says Beklina, who believes clothing and design can be “precious, radical, nurturing, healing and wonderful.”
Guess it’s working cause whenever I go to their site, I’m instantly happy.
I met Embodies owner Kenlynn Wilson last year at a trade show in New York. I could tell by the look in her eye she was the real deal when it came to being serious about eco.
She bases her criteria on a few things: What fabrics are used in the clothing, where the items are manufactured (and under what conditions), what types of dyes are used in the clothing as well as the packaging the clothes are being shipped in. Curating with a careful eye, Wilson’s due diligence yields a great stable of fashion-forward eco-designers.
Besides running a fabulous online boutique, Greenloop owner Aysia Wright is commonly used as a resource for both designers and the eco-community. She’s everywhere.
Having just wrapped up her Project Green Search in L.A., Wright’s returned to her home base of Portland, Oregon where she recently moved the brick and mortar Greenloop inside Seven Planet.
Guided by William McDonough and Michael Braungart’s Hannover Principles on our inter-dependence on nature, Arboretum owners Kate Morison and Andrea Barrett have created their own eco-study of beautiful designed clothing and accessories to show us.
Both women hail from Sonoma County where, they say a connection with the land is a part of their everyday life.
“From the rugged coastline to the majestic redwoods, we have drawn vast inspiration from our environment. Our inspiration and shared vision led us to build an Arboretum.”
Clary Sage Organics
After a busy day wearing my blogger and retailer hats, I want to slip on lounging wear with comfort and ease.
Clary Sage is my go to brand for comfy but stylish yoga pants, camisole tops and my very favorite, Convertible Wrap (feels delicious).
In addition to their own line, they have an “After Yoga” section with easy slip on skirts, tunic t-shirts and go-to hoodies.
Just when you thought you were completely satisfied with their clothing selections, they offer a great range of Lotions and Potions including my favorite body care line, Farmaesthetics and perfumes by Tsi~La (Ylang Ylang is mmm…). Search the site for your own new favorites.
Kate Macgregor, the founder and owner of Kaight has carefully edited her boutique for men and women that dig clothing and accessories “thoughtfully designed” with organic and sustainable textiles.
Like most of the eco-boutiques listed here, Kaight specializes in emerging and independent designers who use organic, recycled and sustainable materials.
Love their Ashley Watson bags, Melissa Shoe selection as well as Dream & Awake vintage dresses.
In addition to their traditional shopping, Tobi offers an Eco-Tobi site which I hope continues to grow.
If you can’t get to the actual brick and mortar shop in San Francisco, their 1-to-1 shopping experience can be had onlinewhich involves live chat with one of the owners to get style advice or sizing questions answered before you buy.
Lots of great natural body and hair care lines including Pangea, Hamadi and Pure Fiji as well as basics from Alternative Apparel and tried and true lines by Edun, Prairie Underground and Stewart and Brown.
Jessa Brinkmeyer, owner of Pivot
This Chicago-based online boutique is run by Jessa Brinkmeyer on the premise that being eco doesn’t have to be overwhelming.
Brinkmeyer says “A big part of building an eco-smart wardrobe is finding pieces you can keep and love.”
Very true. By picking even one sustainably designed article of clothing from Pivot, you’ve in fact begun your journey.
You might want to start with a great fitting She-Bible cardigan or Lara Miller sweater that will stylishly last you for years.
Sodafine has got to be one of the sweetest shops going.
Based in Brooklyn, the boutique’s owner Erin Weckerle focuses her buying on “innovative and unique handmade clothing, accessories and gift items.”
Weckerle also carries a selective collection of vintage clothing, (I recently was gifted a beautiful vintage slip from a friend who stopped in there) as well as lines utilizing eco-friendly fabrics and sustainable labor practices.
The site says “Many of the items you’ll find at Sodafine are made by individuals who call themselves artists and see their production of clothing/accessories as just one facet of their artistic process”¦We are eager to assist young artists and craftspeople with information(and inspiration) for marketing their wares. We intend to provide an interesting model of the intersection of art, craft, and fashion at work in everyday life.”
And they have.
Check out great pieces from Feral Childe, Popomomo as well as Sodafine’s own in-house line.
Kind states that their boutique is for “Living happy, living gently,” which makes me love them all the more.
Mixing sustainably designed as well as vintage finds with things for your nest, Kind is a one-stop shop with quality pieces, consciously handpicked to really reflect their store.