Duchess Worthy Denim

October 18th, 2018 | no comments
Fashion Hound

My Outland Denim jeans teamed with second hand fashion finds

 


Eco Chic

 

Fashion Hound
Fashion Hound

Fashion has the power to be an incredible force for good. It can help, heal and transform the forgotten, downtrodden and the ones who find it hard to speak. As individuals we can vote with our fashion dollar to make a difference and believe me just one purchase can completely change someones situation, when you realise this – ethical and eco chic is a no brainer. So it was incredibly exciting yesterday when the divine Duchess of Sussex decided to sport a pair of outland denim jeans on the Royal Tour stop in Dubbo.

This heartfelt brand stands for women, their rights, their protection and progression, a belief that is also very important to the Royal Mumma to be. Founders James and Erica Bartle and team know all their seamstresses by name, ensure they earn a living wage and are given support to build a brighter future for themselves. These Cambodian women are the reason Outland denim does what they do.

To add to their awesome, Outland Denim are committed to sourcing the most environmentally friendly fabrics and raw materials, including elements like organic cotton pocket linings to recycled packaging, the jean team is also extremely transparent with their supply chain and production process.

The ‘Meghan Effect’ was in full swing yesterday with the ‘Harriet’ jeans she wore selling out within just a few hours…which not only puts Outland Denim on the map but it also means more of these Cambodian women are being heard.

I’ve loved these jeans for a while now and I love even more how I feel when I wear them, carrying the story of these women as I walk.

Be part of the global movement towards a fashion industry that promotes human dignity and leaves a positive imprint on the earth, because every girl deserves to feel like a Duchess!

From Pre Love to New Love

October 3rd, 2018 | no comments

 

Fashion Hound

From Pre-love to New Love!

Whilst we celebrate all things National Op Shop Week …here’s 7 Easy Ways to Rework Thrift.

Standard op shopping will for sure see you reap the one of kind outfits rewards, however there’s also many simple techniques you can try to take your looks next level. Just because you see it on the expensive runways and cashed up celebs doesn’t mean you can’t have it too, here’s how…

Remember the 7 R’s  – Reimagine, Reinvent, Rediscover, Revive, Restyle, Revolutionize, Ressurect.

1.Reimagine  – Op Shops offer a world of style possibilities, the only limit is our imagination. So when I’m thrifting I always aim to think outside the square and dream up ways I can recreate the trends. Take the big bum bag/fanny pack obsession, the designer versions are a serious spend so why not save your cash, support the planet and create your own. For my D&G version you see here – I used a faux Dolce wallet, plain stretchy belt and feather bag charm I found – for under $10 bucks. Then all I did was glue gun the wallet to the belt and add the charm to the side. Hey presto preloved chic.

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2.Reinvent – If it’s good enough for Madonna then why not adopt the reinvention ethos for yourself. I believe we should give our wardrobes a workout and look for ways that we can rework what we already have. I’ve been known to wear a blazer as a bustier (check out the pic below) turn scarves into asymmetrical panels under belts and over jeans, even wear scrap fabric embellished with sparkle as a top. Be inspired by the trends but don’t feel pressured to pay up – op shopping allows you to play.

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3.Rediscover – Accessories are amazing, a fool proof way to easily transform your op shop finds in an instant! Belts, bangles, blingy necklaces and my absolute fave – vintage brooches. They don’t have to be destined to a life as a one purpose pin, I put them everywhere possible! Inspired by the Gucci fanny pack encrusted with gold hard wear, I pinned a cluster of vintage brooches in the same formation onto a $2 patent toiletry bag attached to a belt! To recreate McQueen – I embellished a corset with an insane amount of brooches to get a similar look. Every time I go into an op shop I will buy a brooch to add to my collection – they are just such useful little buggers!

Fashion Hound

Fashion Hound

4.Revive – Breathe new life into a basic piece with clever customising. Cowboy vibes are a big trend we’ve just seem strutt down the fashion week runways, so I headed to my local craft store to get my Clint Eastwood on. This white tassle trim cost me about 5 bucks then I simply stitched it to the bottom of the blouse. Like the brooches, why not build up a little craft kit filled with ribbons, buttons, embellishment, interesting trims and trinkets. Whenever you think you don’t have anything to wear try reviving.

Let make do and mend-ism be your muse!

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5.Restyle – Spring Racing is upon us but it can be such a wasteful, wear once sartorial affair. You will absolutely look just as chic as all the fast fashion filly’s in fact, you’ll be more fabulous because your outfit has a story. This trio shot is 3 outfits I sourced and styled from Salvos Stores and shows you that you never ever have to sacrifice style. Don’t just go for the standard dress either, my fave look is the pants teamed with a men’s jacket and scrap material turned into a stylish turban, simply by twisting it. The other two hats I customised as well, using broken jewels and brooches. Run your own style race sista!

6. Revolutionize – Be a change maker, shift the fashion mindset and stand for style with a purpose. When I was living overseas op shopping was genuinely all I could afford so I challenged myself to recreate luxurious designer looks I saw in the pages of Vogue for minimal spend. Whilst it initially just helped me feel good about myself I quickly realised I could be of service on a much bigger level. To this day second hand is still my first choice. I am so passionate about showing you that op shopping can absolutely be just as chic as high fashion, so whenever I can I love to DIY (sometimes with dressmakers and designers too) and really go to town on the recreation. This Maison Margiela Vs Salvos Stores offering for Fash Fest is one of my faves.

Salvos Stores

7. Resurrect – Just like Jesus or Yeezus why can’t clothes be restored to life too!? Scary to say but Christmas is but 12 weeks away! This is another occasion when we get so whipped up into how much we spend and how many wrapped up goodies are under the tree. I much prefer a Merry THRIFT-mas, with the best kind of presents being the gift of thrift 

From the decorations, to the family table settings and of course the style – you can find absolutely everything you need in an op shop and to top it off your fashion dollar does something really positive for the planet. You divert textile waste from landfill, support the mission of a charity and empower your local community. Thrifting is such a great option for all the events we have at this time of year – check out my Today Show segment and why not plan a Merry THRIFT-mas for 2018!.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Looking Good Vs Doing Good

September 23rd, 2018 | no comments


Fashion Hound

Looking Good V Doing Good…Can we shift the female fashion paradigm!?

Let’s get one thing straight, I’m a girl and I LOVE fashion. Apart from my handsome husband its actually my one true love. Sounds counterproductive for this article I know, but bear with me…

From a very young age I was surrounded by fashion, British Vogues were my unintentional fairytale books. I naturally and instinctively chose them over Cinderella and co, preferring to get lost in the color, texture and wonderful style tales the fashion mags bestowed upon me. Fashion became my second language and to this day it’s my religion of sorts too.

What I grew to not like about the genre however was that it could be segregating – if you didn’t have the money to wear what was in Vogue, were you relevant?

Digital media has played a disturbing part too. Sure it’s a great portal for global communication but it can also be a slippery slope to self loathing and comparison? Australian series The ‘War On Waste’ introduced us to 3 young girls who were fast fashion junkies because they wouldn’t dare be seen twice in the same outfit on Instagram.

I definitely went through a time where I thought I had to keep up and so spent all my savings on the latest and greatest, in a effort to be the cool girl, but for whom? All I ended up achieving was a small bank account, a big headache and an aching back.

When I moved overseas I was forced to cut the BS and be real, boy was it the ultimate blessing! Thrift Shopping was genuinely all I could afford so I began the challenge of travelling light and reinventing Vogue inspired looks I’d spent years studying while I was ‘wasting time’

The more I dived into conscious shopping the more I discovered I could really be of service and so began my serendipitous journey into the world of eco styling – one that didn’t even really exist at the time! I began to see that looking good and doing good didn’t have to be mutually exclusive.

The concept is certainly one I consider on a daily basis, why can’t pre-loved be re-loved and the wearer maintain her chic? I’ve dedicated my working life to doing all I can to break that style stigma. After years of slightly condescending looks and Oh that’s ‘cute’, now finally it seems slow fashion is sexy or #grexy. One thing I have observed though is that it hasn’t stopped the second hand hoarding and over zealous thrift hauls, just because its eco doesn’t mean it always supports our personal well being, especially if we are still feeling the pressure to have all the pretty stuff. Even with what I know now, I can still be guilty of that at times too.

Faye De Lanty

A recent post by @redcarpetgreendress has definitely blown all my fashion chakras and seen me dwell upon it all on a deeper level.

So here’s

3 ways to stick it to the style system and be the sartorial change… 

  1. THE GIFT OF THRIFT – vote with your fashion dollar and do something that’s not only great for the planet but people too. OP SHOP! Whilst you will absolutely find great fashion you’ll also become part of the slow fashion movement. This means diverting textile waste from landfill, decluttering and donating what you no longer wear, supporting the mission of a charity like Salvos Stores and empowering your local community. While you’re at it, try reducing your conscious closet to a capsule wardrobe – a small and simple collection of chic pieces you can mix and match and wear time and time again. A capsule wardrobe will reduce the overwhelm and the dreaded ‘I have nothing to wears’. On top of that when people ask you where you get your great looks from you have a wonderful style story to tell. Your wardrobe has the power to be a walking talking change maker!
  2. SHOP YOUR STASH – Instead of falling prey to the fast fashion herd why not explore new ways to wear what you already have? It’s a scary fact that most of us have things in our wardrobe we’ve never worn, some of which still have the tags on. Australia is also just behind the US in terms of how much we discard of – would you believe a whopping 6000kg’s every ten minutes. So park the perfectionism and immerse yourself in your wardrobe, consider how you could reinvent what you see. Jump online, look at fashion websites – my favourite is VOGUE RUNWAY, it’s filled with past and current catwalk shows, street style and designer reviews. Also spend some time on Instagram searching relevant hashtags like #sustainablefashion #opshop #thrifted and more mainstream fashion driven tags like #stylist #ootd or #currenttrends. Another approach that never fails to inspire me is googling a particular item to see how others style it, for example ‘Beige jacket street style’, without a doubt I always find a new take that fires me up. I love these words from @elleuk’Don’t buy something unless you can commit to wearing it at least 30 times. We’re all guilty of an impulse buy, often knowing full well we probably won’t wear it that many times. So next time you feel the urge, ask yourself these 4 questions.

    Do I really need this?

    How often will I wear it?

    Do I already own something similar?

    Does it go with things I already own?

  3. CHALLENGE THE STATUS QUO – There are some incredible change makers out there really disrupting fashion materialism. Julia Mooney from @oneoutfit100days has made my head explode recently and it was Julia who inspired me to draft this article. A teacher in the US, Julia is making a stand by wearing one dress for 100 days! A self imposed challenge to be mindful of what, why and how we consume. She says ‘let’s use our energy to do good instead of looking good’. Don’t worry she will wash it (She has 3 of them and takes a break on the weekends) nonetheless that’s a huge test for anyone, especially us chicks. I instantly went into my head with thoughts like, wow how would I cope!? I mean I’m proud to say I’m a conscious shopper but I’m also an eco stylist, so could I really do that? Would others judge me, think I was doing it tough or horror of all horror’s think I’m crap at my job!? How would I make it look different (Why am I trying to do that though!? Again – worrying what others think!) It didn’t take long to see first hand how much we base our beauty and self worth on image.

100 Days

What if we took the wardrobe away and just wore one thing, like a uniform, giving us the opportunity to be more than a color, a cut or this seasons current look. We would have so much more time to be of service, speak up for something important and teach others to see us for our hearts and not our haute couture. Could we shift the fashion paradigm and programming? I predict that it would have a pretty profound effect on our own paradigms too. Imagine what might manifest if we spent more time filling up our souls with the slow and meaningful instead of our wardrobes with the fast and meaningless.

Kids have uniforms so they can focus on learning, Karl Lagerfeld wears a uniform of sorts too, sure its Chanel and cost more than a car – however wearing the same thing over and over has made him iconic and instantly identifiable no!?

Cast your eye also towards a world famous editor who hasn’t changed her signature bob and black sunglasses combo for decades. Whether the goal is to make sure they don’t distract from the message of the clothes or to cut out decision fatigue, one things for certain; in a business built on looks, having one that rarely changes is perhaps the ultimate power play.

Is outfit repeating the new black!?

We don’t consider Karl and Anna daggy and outdated, or judge them for being boring, they’ve become global style icons.

So it begs the question, who could you become if you chose doing over looking good!?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reverse Shop-ology

September 9th, 2018 | no comments

 

Fashion Hound

Could our words be a weapon of mass reconstruction!?

‘Sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me!’ Or can they? Our thoughts absolutely have the ability to become things, so imagine what the words we speak have the power to do.

Transform or tarnish!?

When we think of the word donation from an op shop perspective…what does it conjure up? And what about when we add the word bin to it?

Do these words paint the positive picture we want to portray, or do they convey a more pessimistic outlook with perhaps a sense of pity for the receiver, rather than the dignity they deserve?

Does the current connotation around these words – charity bin – also make it easier for people to feel OK about dumping?

As if the most disadvantaged in our society don’t deserve quality? We all know what kind of stuff can be dumped in the form of a donation!

I wonder what would happen if we changed the word from donation to gift and encouraged people to look the recipient in the eye when they bestowed it? Or at least imagine it as a gift.

Delivering their goods by hand to staff in store or meeting the many people those donations has the potential to heal.

Now that’s a real gift.

Now I’m not a gambling gal but I could pretty much bet my thrifted Manolo Blahniks that it would be a very different story if we changed the language, to change the behaviour. Reverse psychology or shop-ology if you will.

Giving the gift of thrift from a space of kindness and thought, as if for a friend would generate a much more meaningful exchange. Education and encouragement for donors is key too, raising awareness and the vibration around what they deem acceptable to donate to a charity. ‘Does your donation count or cost’ is a powerful coin of phrase to consider. Connecting with community, supporting the mission of a worthy cause, creating new possibilities for the ones society forgot. When all done with love, can propel the collective forward enormously.

So perhaps we should gather up our ‘sticks and stones’ and use them to reconstruct a new donation style!? Donations as real gifts.

Winston Churchill knew where it was at when he stated. ‘We are masters of the unsaid words, but slaves of those we let slip out.’

Yep this is an op shop! Our first Salvos Street Boutique in Sydney, filled entirely with beautiful public donations and eco styled by me.

 

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Two of my favorite thrift store looks I’ve ever created. When you donate with thought and love this is what can happen, fashion that not only has the opportunity to be pretty but it can heal and empower local community too.

 

One shirt Two Ways

August 21st, 2018 | no comments

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Eco Fashion Stylist

Sustainable Style

High Low Luxe

It’s no wonder that the classic white shirt is such a well, wonder!

There’s just so many great ways you can style this iconic item

1. Give it monochromatic edge by adding a cropped sweater, biker jacket and serious bling

(I made this piece myself by joining 4 preloved necklaces into one hell of a statement)

2. Go timeless with simple beige tones straight from a Barney’s catalogue, however in my case it’s all thrifted

(minus my LV mais oui!)

How would you style your white shirt?

PS I’m holing onto winter as long as I can…does anyone else morn the loss of layering season!?

 

NIFTY THRIFTY

July 18th, 2018 | no comments
Fashion Hound

Our gorgeous workshop set up in Melbourne, all styled with what we found in the Abbotsford Salvos store.

 

Fashion Hound

My gorgeous models at our Brisbane workshop. I restyle, upcycled, sliced and diced their looks all from the Salvos.

 

Fashion Hound

I found all these fantastic items on the $2 rack, then created looks from the collection. Definitely check out the Clearance aisle in your local op shop, you’ll be surprised what you find.

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The scarf I’m wearing is actually a piece of scrap material from the haberdashery section. Wear it anyway you please, I always love an asymmetrical look, then secure in place with lashings of vintage brooch bling.

 

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So thrilled that Ch9 came to support our zero waste message!

Fashion Hound

Zero Waste Workshop Ready…found all these gorgeous items at the Salvos in under 10 minutes too!

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A few of the looks from the $2 rack as well as some customisation. I reinvented Anita’s Salvos finds with old buttons.

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Incredible interest in the zero waste wisdom…it’s so wonderful to see us all stepping up.

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Zero Waste Warriors. Lovely Anthia in the middle is wearing two pieces from the $2 rack…yep that gorgeous plaid jacket and black dress is a grand total of $4!! (Incidentally she is the organic tea queen and an incredible naturopath who totally saved my health!) Anita is rocking my customised old button ensemble…everything you see us wearing is from the Salvos.

Well what a whirlwind few weeks its been in the zero waste world!

To celebrate Plastic Free July Salvos Stores and I headed up and down the coast with the lovely Anita Van Dyke to host a series of workshops. We showed the sustainable community in Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney how to go from excess to eco luxe with ease and it was absolutely wonderful. I of course spoke about zero waste fashion and along the way gave myself some really fun challenges to walk the talk. We dressed ourselves from each location, I shopped the $2 rack and our warehouses to put together my signature preloved pretty.

Check out the captions on each image for a little bit more of an insight into how I put everything together

Here’s a few take homes as well

  1. Throw the size book out the window and just try things! I see an op shop as a license to play and be creative, the only limit is your imagination
  2. Use designer references…whenever I’m eco styling there is usually a high end label or look I love in mind…its a great guideline to getting nifty thrifty
  3. Try interesting print clashes, special details like gold buttons and choose superior tailoring to take your second hand outfits from simple to sizzling in an instant

 

Check out Anita’s work here and Anthia’s here 

Plastic Free Posse

July 2nd, 2018 | no comments

Fashion Hound

To celebrate #PlasticFreeJuly the fabulous Anita Van Dyke and I are hitting the road to share our zero waste wisdom!

We will be hosting a series of FREE workshops with Salvos Stores in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

I’ll fill you in on all the sustainable style vibes, while Anita has you covered when it comes to zero waste home and lifestyle.

We’ve got lots of goodies, special guests, endless tips and tricks…

PLUS you can grab a copy of Anita’s awesome new book while you are there.

Melbourne has completely sold out twice and is at full capacity.

Brisbane has sold out twice too but we’ve managed to add a few more tickets, so get your

BRISBANE TICKETS HERE

And you can register for your

SYDNEY TICKETS HERE

In the meantime here’s my top 3 Zero Waste Tips to get you started

  1. REFUSE – Say NO to plastic bags, straws, pre packaged fruit, veg and any products in this material.
  2. REFILL – Grab your reusable containers and get your bulk buy on. Check out stores like Source Bulk Foods 
  3. RECYCLE – Avoid fast fashion and join the #slowfashionmovement by heading to your local op shop. You’ll be diverting textile waste from landfill, empowering community and supporting a very worthy cause. Take your reusable shopping bags there too.

Anita rocking Op Shop clothing including one of my ZERO WASTED customised tees

 

Remember Individual impact is powerful…..See you there Zero Waste Warriors!

Swop-ping

June 4th, 2018 | no comments

Fashion Hound

Fashion Hound

Fashion Hound

Fashion Hound

SWOP-PING : (adj.) The art of shopping your bestie’s closet to create a cool new look.

Also See: A wonderfully eco friendly way to get them new clothing feels without having to spend a cent!

During April/May this year, Lee and I went on our 1month honeymoon and I challenged myself to take 1 small carry on suitcase for the entire trip.

It was a challenge to say the least – 4 different countries, totally different climates, conditions and pressing engagements with family and friends where fashion had to be a consideration…I mean a girl still wants to look cute right!?

I packed hard working essentials and was ecstatic to see just how much they went the distance…I’ll post more on that very soon.

As a start

One of my biggest tips is to go SWOP-PING – raid your friends, family or whoever you may know in each port and see what you can put together by way of exchange.

My precious Polish soul sister Karolina lives in NYC and she was totally up for the challenge. She grabbed my beloved Lois Hazel LBD and thrifted belt, styling it in a way I hadn’t thought of, gorgeous!

I dove on her divine tassle corset belt and reworked it over my op shop mens tux shirt and jeans…adding in my beloved wedding shoe.

The result, a sartorial match made in heaven!

Thank you so much to the delightful Diana for capturing the cool vibes between K and I, I really do adore her and not just for her incredible wardrobe!

Check both girls out on instagram and give them some love

@collectiveelementsbydb

@Karolinaborcherhunter

 

Eco Wardrobe Makeover

May 21st, 2018 | no comments

 

FashionHound

A few months ago the lovely Jess from Wanderess Beauty contacted me and asked if I could help her overhaul her wardrobe into an eco friendly fashion haven. She also wanted to update her look to be more fitting for a strong, sassy business woman.

Spreading the good word of sustainable style is something I’m super passionate about so I was super excited at the prospect!

Jess was keen to collaborate with my buddies at Salvos Stores and I to donate, DIY and shop from a more sustainable stand point.

I spent a day thrifting to find the pieces to fit her brief of ‘modern mystic’ and then Jess came to play dress ups

I found her 33 incredible items for around $330 at the Salvos, I mean that’s one jacket from most stores!

Thrifting her must haves was our first priority, then what we couldn’t find with this method we then explored via vintage and ethical brands.

We documented the process so check out the video to see how it all unfolded…so much fun and for a very good cause

That’s the best kind of fashion right!!

xx

Curvy Girl Style

April 11th, 2018 | no comments

Fashion Hound

The Fashion Trends can be hard to translate right!?

So In my latest Today Show segment I show you how to take it from  the runway to the real way, on some real women with wonderful curves!

The best bit, their looks are under $100 and I found them all at my local Salvos Store …Click through to watch!