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If you are looking for stylish ethically-made clothing that’s appropriate for the office or an after-hours event, here’s your ultimate guide for eco-friendly office attire ideal for the busy lady-boss!
In the ocean of “made in china” items, it’s tough for shoppers to find the correct eco-friendly item for them. Especially when it comes to eco-friendly fashion or apparel. The fashion industry hasn’t come as forward as the electronics industry regarding the environmental issue.
But that shouldn’t stop us from buying eco-friendly office attire for ourselves. Being eco-friendly doesn’t mean you should wear ‘weird’ green clothing to your office or look like a vegan wizard. There are plenty of brands and options for you out there to get beautiful and elegant attire for yourself. And who knows, you might be the next fashionista in your office someday!
The key here is to find the brands that match your vision. And today, it’s not that hard to find that in any locality. To demonstrate, I’ve put up a few outfits using products that represent one or more of the following quantities:
- They practice fair trade
- Made with organic elements and not harming the environment in any way
- Practices recycling or upcycling for recyclable items or easily disposable
- If appropriate for use, Second-hand or pre-used items
- Made with vegan items and not harming the animals or wildlife
Look #1: Day at the office
A typical day at work When navy, cream, and camel are combined, you can’t go wrong. They are similar to black and grey in terms of versatility, but they are less severe. These colors are timeless and charming, and they will never go out of trend. As a result, separates in these two colors are wise long-term investments.
- Organic, sustainable and recyclable fibres are made in the EILEEN FISHER. So whether you are looking for a coat, shirt, jumpsuit etc. the sustainable line has something for everyone.
2. Office wear from ADAY are 91% vegan and recycles old fabrics to create new clothes. The products by ADAY are technical, seasonless and sustainable. They ensure no harmful chemicals are used to harm the environment.
3. Natural and sustainable materials and recycled packaging are used in Sézane. These garments are good summer staples and we love them because they can be used anywhere.
4. If you are looking for something bright and formal for office wear like blazers, patterned skirts, slacks and dresses, check out Boden. This company supports sustainable formal attire and is a member of the Ethical Trading Initiative.
5. Vetta uses sustainable fabrics made in the USA to help create capsule wardrobes for women. They focus on sustainability and their factories are US-based.
6. Filippa K is a Swedish brand that aims to turn its entire collection into sustainable collections by 2030. Filippa K offers sustainable and comfortable clothing for the office and after-hours gatherings.
Look #2: After-hours event
These jewel-toned shift dresses are classic staples that effortlessly take you from a lunch meeting to an evening event. Any piece of cloth that can serve both purposes in this way is a style win and eco win for eco-conscious peoples like us.
Create a conservative, casual style by adding flats and a cardigan or blazer to these classic shifts, or dress them up for the evening by adding statement jewelry and black patent spike heels.
- Sourcery‘s pieces are made from innovative, biodegradable washable silk making it sustainable for use. You don’t have to take it to dry cleaners as they use toxic chemicals.
2. The small ethically made brand RARE&FAIR truly brings you unique pieces made out of sustainably sourced silk and other eco-conscious materials. All is made preserving Thai ancient techniques to become truly unique eco-friendly office attire. And, to be honest, probably your new favourite after-hours event pieces in your wardrobe too!
3. The stylish leather shoes and bags of ABLE are made in Ethiopia and Peru by women. ABLE is an excellent brand for formal yet comfortable shoes and they can be easily put on.
4. Ethical shoes for both men and women are available at Nisolo, an impact-focused ethical lifestyle brand. In addition, Nislo offers skills training and safe working conditions and ensures fair trade wages.
5. If you want luxury vegan apparel with a variety of choices, check out Stella McCartney’s creations. The lady got a huge category of almost everything you need.
6. AKASHI-KAMA uses Japanese cotton and manufactures in Oakland, CA. This is dedicated to noragis, a classic Japanese workwear piece. Their norgaris can be dressed up or down. Therefore, you can easily go from the office to your post-work social activities.
7. Kestan uses cotton and sustainable practices, including transparency of its factories. This brand offers professional women a modern, effortless look and they are affordable and easy to style.
The above mentioned brands will have ALMOST anything and everything you need to find. The key here is to look for the exact things that you need.
Why is Environmental Friendly Office Attire important?
Now that you know the brands to shop for, I want to draw your attention to some facts. After all, how does office attire make an impact even?
Let’s look at some facts, shall we?
- Each year, more than 90 Billion clothing pieces are made, consuming trillions of water.
- Three out of every four garments we waste wind up in landfills or are burned.
- Behind oil, the clothing sector as a whole is the world’s second-largest cause of pollution.
- Polyester emits nearly three times as much CO2 as cotton, and its fibers are discharged when laundered, eventually spilling into rivers and oceans, where they can take decades to break down and endanger both aquatic life and people.
- The garment sector contributes 20% of all industrial water pollution worldwide.
- To manufacture garments, textile mills utilize 20,000 chemicals, many of which are hazardous.
- The majority of those garments are composed of plastic, causing a microfibre disaster in our seas.
- Around 10% of worldwide carbon emissions are due to the fashion and apparel sector. That’s more than all foreign flights and freight put together.
- Within a decade, if the sector continues on its current path, greenhouse gas emissions are anticipated to rise by 50% at least.
Lastly, I want to repeat what you already know: being eco-friendly is not a shopping mantra. Instead, it’s a lifestyle that we adore and live by.
And no matter where we are, at the office, at school, camping or even at home, you should always be eco-conscious of what you’re wearing, what you’re doing, and what you’re consuming because there are not many people following the lifestyle to save the world that we live in, sadly.
So we, the people who are embracing it, should embrace it properly so the people surrounding us can also be inspired and connected to the lifestyle, not to mention its environmental effect.
Last but not least, every piece you purchase should be fit for you and make you feel confident to wear. Avoid dresses that increase your insecurities wearing them. If these criteria are not met, you might wear the piece once or twice but waste your money and the dress will end up at some corner of the closet.