I am creating fun collections of vintage/eco/sustainable gorgeousness over at eBay. Please follow me over there if you are interested in such sartorial enjoyments :)
My first collection is Cool and Collected: Winter Whites and Neutrals (screenshot below):
I first wrote about Raleigh Denim on Eco Chick way back in 2009, and since then, the brand has grown in more ways than just business-wise (though they are going gangbusters in that department as well).
They’ve recently opened an NYC storefront and have expanded their jeans-only line to include all sorts of lovely pieces to go-with denim, like sweet polka-dot shirts and edgy-cool vests.
This made-in-USA (mostly North Carolina, where the designer couple lives) denim company has a great story, which I got to write about in Whole Living magazine’s October issue. I’ve screen-shotted the iPad version here (the mag looks GREAT in it’s new app!) and the third shot below is from the iPad-only video of Raleigh Denim creators, Sarah and Victor, talking about how they make their classic-cool jeans.
Cute screenshot below from the iPad-only Whole Living magazine app – that’s Sarah and Victor!
I am SO excited to share with you the piece I wrote for September’s Whole Living – all about one of my favorite topics, Slow Fashion. I interviewed the creators behind the slow fashion label Adie + George (natural dyes expert Sasha Duerr and ecofashion designer Casey Larkin of Mr. Larkin), and reported on how they make their local botanically dyed masterpieces. It’s not only a great read (if I do say so!), but the photographer and designers over at the magazine made it all look so spectacular and really captured the heart of the story visually.
Pick up the September issue to check this story out – as well as some seriously tasty tofu recipes (preceding my story – love that one of my top 10 foods is covered here!), a really interesting analysis of the gluten-intolerance epidemic, and oodles of other healthy living info and loveliness. (And if you are a subscriber to the mag, the new iPad edition is free….and includes additional content!)
I’m excited to report that July’s Goodebox (which we first wrote about in March), has products from companies chosen by yours truly.
Check it out! I’ve chosen products from some of my very favorite green beauty companies, including scent from A Perfume Organic, mascara from Benecos, a caffeine eye cream from 100% Pure, bronzer from Revolution Organics, hair shine from Emtage, and a lovely body scrub from Miessence.
Here’s what I chose for this month’s Goodebox!
What IS Goodebox? Simply, it’s a monthly green beauty subscription service that allows you to try a bunch of curated products in sample sizes, so you can find stuff you absolutely love. If you are trying to switch to healthier, non-toxic makeup and personal care products, Goodebox allows you to try a variety of products so you can find what’s right for you, without spending a ton buy full size versions of everything (and then having to wastefully trash what you don’t end up liking).
Interested? You can sign up for your monthly box of fun here.
My fave eco fashion label, Feral Childe, got featured in the Rodale Healthy Holiday Gift Guide per my suggestion (check out the quote for why I love the brand so much).
“For Her: Feral Childe Clothing
Make a hipster happy with stylish, sustainable clothing from Feral Childe, says Starre Vartan, green fashionista and author of The Eco Chick Guide to Life(St. Martin’s Griffin, 2008). “Feral Childe is my all time favorite eco fashion label. I love the funky prints—hand-created by the designers—the attention to details of draping and fit, and that it’s made in New York City from sustainable fabrics,” says Vartan. Each season’s line is designed with a theme in mind, and their Fall/Winter 2011 theme is “Orchestra.” The pieces all include musical elements, whether it’s instruments or funky notes.
$99 to $138; feralchilde.com”
I’m having fun styling some outfits with a pair of new fall booties from Naya (pictures coming soon!) as part of their Renew Your Soles challenge. They also featured me on their blog and got me thinking about destressing with some of their questions. Here’s an excerpt:
How do you like to relax?
I find that getting a cocktail or tea with friends is the very best way for me to unwind. Sometimes I just need to talk about what’s bugging me for 20 minutes straight, and sometimes it’s just listening to what’s going on in their lives that makes me realize that we are all struggling with pretty similar issues. Usually, I end up feeling lighter and brighter about my own life, as well as having been there for my friend who didn’t even know she needed to talk!
How do you help soften your footprint on our earth?
I really consider everything I buy before I plunk down my cash – this not only saves money and keeps the regrets down, it also ensures that whatever I bring into my home or my life is something that I will value and keep for a long time. The essence of living sustainably is buying or consuming only what you need (and when you do, supporting companies that are giving back and/or creating long-lasting, eco friendly products). Thoughtful consumption is healthier for your waistline, your finances, and your mental health too – too much stuff to deal with just adds to stress!
Sleep is a huge part of renewing your mind body and soul. What is your routine before going to sleep each night?
I’m lucky enough to be a great sleeper and usually get more than 8 hours on most nights (some people need more, some less). Especially after I’ve learned how important sleep is for keeping skin looking young and fighting wrinkles (skin repair happens when at night while you are deeply sleeping), I’ve been vigilant about getting my shut-eye.
My routine involves shutting off the computer at least an hour before I turn in and showering at night – I like to go to bed clean and warm. I use plenty of all-natural aromatherapy products to scrub and cleanse. Natural scents like lavender, ylang ylang and sandalwood are my favorites. I usually end with an all-over oil rubdown of either a premixed massage-type oil or a DIY mix of almond oil and lavender (instead of a cream moisturizer). Especially in winter, oils last longer and will totally absorb into warm, damp skin and keep you super hydrated. Then I find my current novel and my kitty Penelope (and my boyfriend, if he’s in town), and snuggle up. I’m usually out in 20 minutes or less!
What is your favorite drink to help you relax?
I drink a lot of chamomile tea to relax, as well as the Love tea by Pukka and Easy Now by Yogi teas (they are both mixtures). Look for fresh chamomile tea – you can tell if it’s good if you can see the flower parts in the tea. It’s a lot more flavorful and I think works better to calm than the old, mashed flowers that tend to be tasteless.
Read the whole article on Naya’s blog.
I love this new competition by Yoxi, a cool nonprofit that aims to find the “next social media rockstars” – their latest topic to tackle takes a look at the fashion industry. I helped them out a bit with my expertise and they were kind enough to feature me on the page for the competition:
The Yoxi “Trim the Waste of Fashion” Competition featured me as an expert Q&A.
I really enjoyed speaking at the recent Afingo Fashion Forum in NYC at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Check out the wrap-up video below, courtesy of Ecouterre.
Starre Vartan (far right) speaks at FIT at the Afingo “Sustainability and Philanthropy” panel. Jill Fehrenbacher (not pictured), editor of Inhabitat moderated, and (L to R) Jeffrey Costello and Robert Tagliapietra, designers of Costello Tagliapietra, Julie Gilhart, the former creative director of Barneys, Melissa Kushner, founder of Goods for Good, Summer Rayne Oakes, eco model and spokesperson, and founder of Lulu Frost, Lisa Salzer.
It was a great discussion at the Afingo Fashion Forum at FIT in New York and I was honored to be a part.
From the excellent Ecosalon article on the event (with some great critiques!):
“Vartan called for practical tools for consumers, such as a universal and standardized rating system that would account for sustainability preferences including water, textiles, fair trade, non-toxic dyes, et al. Much like a business index or nutrition label, a rating system would empower consumers to make more conscious choices instead of relying on potentially greenwashed claims – and blindly hoping for the best.”
Starre Vartan, as featured in April, 2011 Whole Living Magazine
If you follow my Tweets, I kinda gave away the fact that I was going to be the first in a new feature in Whole Living Magazine called “My Stylosophy” in April. The magazine is on newsstands now! (That’s the page, above.) It’s a jam-packed issue of green goodness, featuring other great greenies like Treehugger’s editor, Meaghan O’Neill, fellow Garrison native (and friend) bird rescuer Suzie Gilbert, Source 4 Style founder Summer Rayne Oakes, and many more amazing eco heros!
Thinking ahead (and so I would always remember such a fun day), I took a few shots while we were getting ready for the shoot. It took a couple hours to do hair, makeup, and choose outfits. We shot four ensembles, which were made up of mostly my clothes (since this is a feature about personal style), with a piece or two from the awesome Whole Living eco friendly clothing racks.