People say eco-fashion is expensive and hard to find. We found it in malls across the country — at affordable prices. From work out to work day, weekend to night out, your options just got a little bit greener. Here is Part One of Four.
First up? Work-ready clothing from Edun, which is, admittedly, not your typical work-wardrobe brand. Although it’s sold in department stores like Nordstrom, Edun is more couture than contemporary casual — with price tags to match. Yet although Edun’s prices might be slightly higher than the throwaway dresses in the junior’s section, the investment you make pays off three-fold. First, each piece is meticulously designed by rising star Sharon Wachoub — recruited to the brand after Louis Vuitton bought in last year — with classic lines offset by edgy details. Second, Edun uses sustainable materials whenever possible—like the organic cotton and linen pieces shown here. But third—and most important—the brand was launched in Spring 2005 by Ali Hewson and Bono, with the goal of empowering fair trade African businesses and, frankly, improving the world. Today, 80% of Edun Apparel’s manufacturing takes place in Africa, where the brand works to support sustainable farming and repair the damage wreaked by civil war. Which means your coffee-break conversation just might get a little bit more interesting.
Some people get religion, Matt & Nat Creative Director Inder Bedi got vegetarianism. After taking a dare to cut out meat for a month, Bedi was inspired to create an accessories brand that didn’t use any animal products, either. Then he took things a step further by deciding to use recycled materials—currently, an average of 21 plastic bottles are upcycled to create a Matt & Nat bag, which can be found in Bloomingdale’s stores, as well as boutiques worldwide. Fifteen years after the Canadian-based Bedi founded the company, these vegan “it bags” are carried by everyone from Kristen Bell to Olivia Wilde, who put their money where their mouths are in supporting environmentally friendly fashion. Luckily, Matt & Nat bags are affordable enough that you can, too.