When I travel, have an arsenal of tools to help me travel comfortably and reduce my plastic waste. This includes a water bottle, coffee cup, a small container, and occasionally cutlery. Then there’s the requisite laptop and magazine to while away the hours at the airport, plus hand cream, lip balm, sunglasses and anything else I feel I might ‘need.’
I’m a fan of large tote bags and adore my four-year-old Mamuye from ABLE, but it is a bit flimsy for travel and has no pockets, so I’ve been on the hunt for something a bit sturdier and more practical.
The base is solid, so it stands on its own when I set the bag down
Has a side pocket for all the small items and my phone
I can fill it to the hilt, and because the strap is thick, no matter how heavy it got, this bag does not dig into my shoulder
It’s beautifully made. I know this will be with me for many, many years
I wore this almost every day during my two weeks of travels and not a day passed when someone did not compliment the bag, that’s a big win in my book!
While we’re on the topic of fashion, I’m also loving everything about Australian ethical fashion label Lois Hazel right now.
I’ve known the brand’s designer Lois for a few years now. I’ve been to her shows and met very briefly afterward, and regularly chat online like many of us in the eco-space do. But this was the first time we’d properly met and spent time together. I was fortunate enough to visit her studio a few times during my Melbourne trip.
I have a deeper appreciation for the love, patience, and hard work that goes into making our clothes after watching Lois putting together some pieces while we watched. I also got to see her new collection before it launched and fell in love with almost every piece. Lois’ designs are all handmade in Melbourne using deadstock fabric, and the new collection features some gorgeous pieces made from organic hemp. They will make you forget everything you think you know about hemp clothes! The rest of the Rise Collection will be dropping soon.
Admittedly I did return home with three of her pieces. In my defense, they all filled wardrobe gaps, and I’ve worn every item to death over the last three weeks already. I’m wearing the Rise Dress in the picture above.
Giant lettuce I grew myself. As a former plant killer, I am so proud!!
I am REALLY loving my Salad Table.
I am now a ‘grow your own’ convert! Even after six months, I still get a little thrill walking outside and to pick my food!
The Salad Table is a portable growing table which uses a combination of water and nutrients to grow small salad style veggies and herbs. It comes in different sizes to fit most yards and patios and trellis styles suitable for apartments. It’s a set and forget easy to grow, organic veggie garden, no soil or green thumb required.
I returned from Sydney to a million cherry tomatoes (slight exaggeration, but close!) which are now piling up in a container in the fridge awaiting use. I think I’m going to have a crack at making a pasta sauce. I’ll probably film it so keep an eye on Instagram over the next week. You can keep up with my veggie growing exploits on my Instagram Stories which are also saved in the highlights bar.
Reading, Watching, Listening
I picked up Vogue Australia’s March issue at the airport. This month’s theme is Next Gen, featuring the younger generation of creatives, visionaries, and disruptors who are setting the agenda. It was a good read, after wading through 30,000 ads. Sadly there was only one sustainability-focused piece from their sustainable fashion editor Clare Press. One issue dedicated to sustainable fashion last March is not good enough guys!
Some great articles I’ve read that might interest you:
I’ve had a bit of photo editing work to do this month. The task is pretty mindless, so I like to listen to podcasts while I’m editing. My picks right now are:
Shameless. A podcast for smart women who love dumb stuff. The name says it all. The hosts are two whip-smart 20 somethings who discuss everything from pop culture to politics with a solid dose of good humour. I’m a big fan.
Episode 73 of Wardrobe Crisiswith guest Claire Bergkamp, Sustainability and Innovation directory at Stella McCartney. It’s a good one guys; you may want to listen more than once! They chat about circular design, innovative fabrics, the clothes we’ll be wearing in the future.
Spoonful of Sarah’s Seize the Yayepisode 26 with Daniel Flynn from Thank You. I’m not a fan of their water bottles (single-use plastic needs to fuck right off) but Thank You is an incredible company who are doing a lot of good in the world.
I’m a sucker for good (and bad) fiction, and I’ve found myself hooked on Deborah Harkness’ ‘All Souls Trilogy.’ It’s supernatural fantasy minus the angsty teen bullshit that’s so common these days. The main characters are in their 30’s, and they have degrees, jobs, and real lives! I powered through the first book in half a day and now onto book two. If you like history and light reading, give a try. I’m also watching the series “A Discovery of Witches which is based on the book and stars Aussie actor Theresa Palmer, which sadly is only eight episodes long — hanging out for season two!
Aside from the Lois Hazel pieces. I’ve also picked a few other new and pre-loved fashion staples this month. I have a list of items I’m needing or wanting to fill gaps in my wardrobe. Occasionally I will deviate, but for the most part, I stick to the list.
This super cozy mustard yellow knit from Everlane got a workout in Melbourne and Sydney. It pairs beautifully with jeans and layered up with my favourite dresses. Now the jumper is sitting impatiently on my shelf waiting for Queensland to cool down. Are Autumn and Winter even coming? The colder seasons appear to be seriously delayed again this year. But hey, climate change is not real, right?
A second-hand tan crossbody bag pictured above right. I found this Rebecca Minkhoff bag on eBay for $40 plus postage in fantastic condition. A quick Google search revealed it retails for over $200. Bargain!
Another preloved bargain were these Scanlan Theodore boots (above left). New with the box, worn only once, for $200. They were an investment but worth it. Especially when they retails for four times that much. I love finds like this which prove second hand is not second best!
GlamCorner’s new subscription box service. It’s everyday fashion and workwear from some impressive Australian designers such as Cue, Ginger & Smart, Realisation Par, and Zimmermann. You pay a monthly fee which gives you three styles at a time then return them when you’re ready for something new. One of the fastest growing sustainable fashion trends is the rental economy with more people embracing the end of ownership. It’s perfect for people like us who are conscious about sustainable consumption and reducing their fashion footprint. I’ve called it. Renting is the new black.
Decided to add this at the last minute because there is always something more we could be doing to help the planet and right now, saving our own backyard is a priority. The Great Australia Bight is under threat and we ALL need to take action. Read about it here.
Kira Simpson is an environmentalist and sustainability educator. She started The Green Hub in 2015 and has since grown to become one of Australia’s largest education platforms dedicated to helping people live a more sustainable life, talking about the big environmental issues like climate change, plastic pollution, and fast fashion – showing people how they can have an impact through their own small daily actions and how to be part of the bigger environmental movement.