Thursday, August 29, 2013

Finally! Eco-friendly Apparel for the Office {Meet Zady}

4 zady eco-friendly online retailer

I have been anticipating the launch of Zady for some time now, and they're finally here! This is a company I have day-dreamed about starting myself, but I am so happy that someone else has done all the work and done it all so beautifully.

Zady offers sustainable, high-quality and on-trend apparel for men and women.  They also have a message and a mission, and it's right in line with mine and so many others who want to end the fast fashion phenomenon.

Most importantly, though, they have eco-friendly office staples. From conservative collared shirts and trousers to colorful accent accessories, this is one of the only places on the interwebs you can depend on for sustainable workwear. You're welcome, people. You're welcome.

zady eco-friendly online retailer

Bonus: if you're wondering where the pretty bracelet you're looking at came from or how it was made, you have a handy little badge system to let you know, in addition to the background narratives included with each item.

And while I do admit some of the prices are pretty high, it's important to remember that investing in timeless pieces that will last decades is worth it, especially when you have the luxury of knowing who made your clothes, where they made them, and how.

So go forth, little grasshoppers, and shop fair!

zady eco-friendly online retailer

All images via

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Mode Marteau {Luxury Vintage Consignment}

9 ariana mode marteau lookbook august 2013

I've mentioned Mode Marteau here on the blog before in a "three wishes" post, but with each new season, owner Ariana Boussard-Reifel surprises and delights me all the more with her sharp editorial eye and quirky tastes.

Her site is my go-to resource for luxury-quality vintage and designer items with a certain je ne sais quois. Ariana has a collector's taste that shines through in each piece she offers. What's more, she implements sustainable practices in many aspects of her business, from credit-union banking to recycled packaging. 

When a new Mode Marteau lookbook appeared in my inbox, I knew I had to share it with you all as soon as possible. Shot in Montana with a Go West theme, the looks Ariana has styled are pitch perfect for fall transitions and the photography is simply stunning. I've put together some of my favorites below, including some beautiful Frye boots and an Hermes scarf, and you can shop the full collection here.

6 ariana mode marteau lookbook august 2013

5 ariana mode marteau lookbook august 2013

8 ariana mode marteau lookbook august 2013

2 ariana mode marteau lookbook august 2013

7 ariana mode marteau lookbook august 2013

10 ariana mode marteau lookbook august 2013

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Monday, August 26, 2013

Introducing Ace & Jig: One Dress, Two Ways {Fall Transitions}

2 ace and jig dress rachel mlinarchik fair trade style blog

I'm pleased to introduce you to a fair and kind company introduced to me by my uber-cool sister-in-law, Jen. She lives in Portlandia with all the cool kids, and she always seems to know about the newest eco-fabulous happenings. Her recommendation of Ace & Jig was no exception: by their second season, they were carried in Opening Japan. In my book, there are very few things hipper or cooler than that.

Their ethics are on point, too. While their super-soft, custom-woven fabrics travel all the way from India, they come by way of a small factory owned by a man who not only provides free health and child care to his workers, but also offers them organically grown produce that has been nurtured by the recycled rainwater he collects (!). When Ace & Jig co-founders Cary Vaughan and Jenna Wilson   met him, they were jazzed about his "ancient" hand loom and their shared love of recycling.

Ace & Jig aim for a style that isn't trendy or overwrought, but is instead timeless and simple; pieces you can love for a lifetime, as they put it. Plus, who doesn't love pockets on dresses? Find me this person.

ace and jig, swingy lightweight dress, rachel mlinarchik, fair trade, style blog

If you're not feeling the hippie-dippy vibe of this dress, you can throw on a jacket and oxfords to balance the flower child with a little menswear. The look below is also a great way to transition flowy summer dresses for cooler fall days. While the jacket and oxfords look is definitely more my speed, I enjoyed styling it up in beads and bangles for this post!

ace and jig dress rachel mlinarchik fair trade style blog

  • Jacket is made in the USA by Theory, similar available HERE
  • shoes are made in Italy by AGL, similar HERE & HERE-- more on them soon, so stay tuned!
  • Dress is fairly made in India by Ace & Jig, similar HERE and below (on sale!)

Scroll through to shop this look + a few other pieces from Ace & Jig that are available right now:

If you'd like to learn more about Ace & Jig, check out all of the Behind the Scenes features on Of a Kind, one of my favorite (fair and kind) online retailers, or visit their homepage to scope out their fall/winter 2013 collection (or the sneak preview below). Happy Shopping!

ace + jig, fall line, my fair vanity

Don't forget: you can shop all of my favorite, fair items 

Thursday, August 22, 2013

All Natural Style {New Seventh Generation Skin Serum}

rachel mlinarchik, all natural style, seventh generation skin serum

My all-natural style includes bright red lipstick. I realize ruby red lips don't exactly scream "natural," but for me, it's an easy way to look put together while wearing very little make-up overall. My go-to look is natural skin, a little mascara, and a red or fuschia lip. If my skin isn't at its best or I want to even out my complexion, I add BB cream with SPF, but that's really it. At work, I might not even do a red lip, just mascara and lip gloss or chapstick.

The way I keep my skin healthy and hydrated is with oils.  Many, many oils. This may seem counter-intuitive to some, but I swear that as soon as I started including essential oils and serums into my regular skincare regimen, my skin became much, much calmer and happier.

So, when Seventh Generation sent me a bottle of their newest skin serum, I was intrigued. I already use so many of their household products because I love the sustainably-focused philosophy of the company. Seventh Generation encourages us to consider the effects of our actions on the seventh generation into the future, not just those who surround us today. The idea is attributed to the Iroquois nation, and clearly it's one that we should all embrace whenever possible.

2 rachel mlinarchik all natural style seventh generation skin serum

There are six different types of skin-boosting serums: hydrating, soothing, firming, cleansing, revitalizing, and protecting.  I received the "soothing" serum with oat extract, and so far I love the smell and the effects. As instructed, I mix one drop into my moisturizer in the morning, and at night, I smooth two drops onto damp skin, following it up with my usual facial oils. After a full week, I can say that my skin is smooth, soft and calm.

I'm happy to report that all six of the serums are vegan, and free of parabens, phthalates and synthetic fragrances. That's what I'm talkin' bout, baby.

rachel mlinarchik, all natural style secrets, seventh generation skin boosts serum
Wearing an Ace and Jig dress (fair trade, similar here, stay tuned for more info); shoes are second-hand from Secondi; lipstick by Radiant cosmetics (supports fight against human trafficking)

As part of this contest, we were asked to discuss our all-natural beauty and style secrets. As you know, my style is no secret: I stick to fashion that is kind to the earth and the people on it. My dress is made using fair labor practices, my shoes are consigned, and my lipstick helps fight human trafficking. I think it's quite natural to be kind, don't you? :)

What are your all natural style secrets? What natural products do you love? Please do tell me in the comments-- I'm always looking for new products to try!

And last but not least, please hop over to my Lucky post and vote for me! You don't have to sign in or anything, just click. I wanna win this joint for eco-fashionistas everywhere! :)

Full Disclosure: I received a free sample of this product (Seventh Generation Skin Boosts Serum) from Lucky and Seventh Generation for use in connection with this blog. #allnaturalstylesecrets
My product reviews reflect my honest opinion.

All photography and styling by My Fair Vanity.

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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Your Fair Vanity {A Sustainable Style Round-up}

Your fair style august 2013 3

I'm pleased to share with you the second installment of my new monthly series: Your Fair Vanity: An Eco-Friendly Style Round-up.

In this series, I share examples of how stylin' ladies from around the interwebs have incorporated eco-friendly, sustainable elements into their outfits while maintaining on-trend, impeccable style. This month, I've put together several transition looks to help us all get inspired for fall.

First up we have Elena from Classy and Fabulous wearing white J Brand Jeans (on sale now!), one of my favorite made in the USA brands. With her is Alicia from River City Chic showing off her long legs in a pair of shorts she scored at a consignment shop. I love the bright color and the laid-back way she's styled them.

Your fair style august 2013 4

Next we have Heidi from Jax and Jewels in a variety of eco-friendly elements: both her dress (Shoshanna) and her clutch (Gigee Marie) are made in the USA.  With her is Alden from Ecocult, wearing a bag made of upcycled leather by The Sway.

your fair style august 2013

Tammy from a A Loyal Love rounds out the bunch wearing a kicky, made in the USA circle skirt from American Apparel, and Lauren (Lo) from Fashionably Lo is looking sharp in a fair trade, handmade bracelet by Mae Movement.

***If you'd like to be included in next month's round-up, leave a comment on this post or email me with a link to the post you'd like featured and which element(s) of your outfit are eco-friendly by September 18. ***

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Monday, August 19, 2013

Ikat Print Romper {Old Suan Juan}

7 ikat romper old san juan

trina turk, ikat printed jumpsuit, ikat shirt

As part of our recent military appreciation tour, my fellow dancers and I were able to do a little exploring in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico. I loved the candy colors of the buildings there, and in the tropical heat, I had to bust out my favorite ikat romper and my trusty fair trade (and handmade) Pikolinos sandals.

The romper I'm wearing is conventional (not fair), but I found you some solid alternatives by Trina Turk, a California-based label known for their colorful patterns and Los Angeles vibe. Thankfully, they still make their apparel line in California, so you can proudly buy American when you shop this brand.

Below are a few more ikat-inspired Trina Turk items I'm digging:

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Thursday, August 15, 2013

Fair Trade Patterned Shorts by One Mango Tree

one mango tree, ikat shorts, fair trade, eco-friendly style blog

I wore these patterned shorts by fair trade brand One Mango Tree in an earlier post this summer, and today I'd like to tell you a little bit more about what a wonderful company they are. They tell the story best in their own words:

"One Mango Tree began in a tiny market stall in Gulu in 2007. During the conflict in Northern Uganda, many humanitarian organizations taught women to sew - in the hopes that this skill would provide a sustainable livelihood. The local market was quickly saturated, resulting in hundreds (maybe thousands) of women with basic sewing skills and no way to earn a living. Auma Lucy was one of those women - she rented a small stall in the market and sold traditional dresses. With the combination of beautiful and bright kitenge fabrics and some Western designs, we helped Lucy to develop an export market for her products, and One Mango Tree took root."

Since 2007, they have trained and employed 30 tailors, provided trainings on health and financial literacy, and the women themselves have organized into a Village Savings and Loan Association (a program pioneered by CARE), thereby counting on each other to help finance their dreams. But One Mango Tree goes even further than the concept of fair trade, making a continued, conscious effort to improve the quality of life of the women who produce their beautiful garments.

By 2011, most people in Northern Uganda had returned to their villages. Many women were renting homes in town to work for One Mango Tree, and only saw their families occasionally. They missed their children, and longed to be back home, digging their gardens and spending time with family and friends. In response, One Mango Tree implemented a work-from-home program, allowing each tailor to return home with her sewing machine. The women still come together once a week in the production manager's home to pick up cut pieces of fabric to make handbags, then they bring the finished pieces back the following week.

You can learn more about the One Mango Tree mission and story right here. I know I'm a fan for life, and I especially love the versatility of the beautiful shorts I'm wearing above and below (similar available here). You can dress them up with a collared shirt and heels, or go for a boho-chic vibe by mixing a floral print with their graphic pattern.

one mango tree, ikat shorts, fair trade, eco-friendly style blog

Last but not least, I've selected a few more of my favorites* from their online shop. One Mango Tree doesn't stop at apparel, offering beautiful ikat bags, exotic jewelry, and staple t-shirts that would work well in anyone's wardrobe.

6 one mango tree ikat shorts eco fashion style blog

5 one mango tree ikat shorts eco fashion style blog

*Just to be clear, while I occasionally accept gifted items for review when a brand's ethics are a good fit with my mission (example here), One Mango Tree did not provide me with these shorts, nor did they provide any other compensation for this post-- I just think they're rad, and I wanted to share! :)

Don't forget: you can shop all of my favorite, fair items 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Introducing: Eco-friendly Glasses

eco-optic glasses, recycled, rachel mlinarchik, eco-fashion

eco-optic glasses, recycled, rachel mlinarchik, eco-fashion

eco-optic glasses, recycled, rachel mlinarchik, eco-fashion

I'm so pleased to share a new eco-friendly company I've discovered: Eco-optics.

I stopped into Dupont Circle's A Brighter Image and was delighted to learn that not only do they carry eco-friendly brand ECO, but with the exception of Ray Ban they do not carry brands owned by the somewhat shady Luxotica (see this 60 minutes story to catch up on why your Chanel and Gucci glass might not be exactly what you think they are).

Instead, A Brighter Image remains an independent local store carrying smaller, less mass-produced labels and high-quality eyegear. ECO-optics glasses like the ones I'm wearing above, for example, are made from  95% recycled materials, and they plant a tree for each pair of glasses sold (670,000 and counting). ECO brand eyewear is also a proud member of 1% for the planet, which means they've vowed to donate 1% of their profits to environmental organizations each year. I think carrying awesome brands like ECO eyewear makes Dupont Circle A Brighter Image deserving of your love and likes on Facebook, don't you?

Even if you're not in need of prescription glasses, DC locals should stop in to A Brighter Image to pick up a pair of groovy vintage deadstock sunglasses like the ones you see below, or you can have them order you a fun pair of Eco sunglasses, which are produced by Modo. It's definitely worth sifting through their online shop if you have the time. There, you'll find a veritable a smorgasbord of eco-friendly, polarized sunglasses. Check out their wares HERE.

vintage deadstock sunglasses from a brighter image

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Friday, August 9, 2013

Eco-friendly Bath Salts {Barr-Co}

bath salts made by hand in the USA, Anthropologie, Barr Co

One of my favorite birthday presents this year were these delicately scented bath salts from Anthropologie. I love, love, love bath oils, bath salts, candles and pretty much anything that has to do with relaxation and self-care, and I was so touched to see my husband's careful attention to eco-friendliness in his gift-giving this year!

Made in the Saint Louis, MO, by Barr-co, the ingredient list really says it all: made with oatmeal and milk, scented with milk, oatmeal, vanilla and vetiver.

2 bath salts made by hand in the USA

When I checked online at Anthropologie, I saw that they have even more luxury goodness on offer by Barr-co, from soaps to lotions to bubble bath, and it's all handmade with love in America--you're welcome. :)

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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Clover Canyon {Mixing Prints and Patterns to the Max}

clover canyon patterned shorts made in the usa my fair vanity

Allow me to introduce you to the most awesome shorts ever: the City Palace short by Clover Canyon. I got these as a little birthday present for myself, and I couldn't be happier with them.

4 clover canyon patterned shorts made in the usa my fair vanity

clover canyon patterned shorts made in the usa my fair vanity

Taking into account their major mix of prints and patterns, I paired them with my vegan Stella McCartney ankle boots (similar here), a Mango Tree Bangles cuff, a simple black tank and my vegan Matt and Nat bag (several are on sale on ASOS right now!). These shorts can clearly stand on their own without much embellishment.

Clover Canyon is a Los Angeles-based company that also manufactures all of their clothes right there in L.A., so buying a pair is buying American. I snapped up this particular pair on sale at local DC store Betsy Fisher, but there are so many more pieces I'd like to collect, and I've rounded up several of my favorites for you below.

clover canyon patterned shorts, made in the usa, my fair vanity

*IFB's latest project is a link-up on fall boots (more here).

clover canyon, patterned shorts, made in the usa, my fair vanity

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Sunday, August 4, 2013

Introducing Fortress of Inca: Wedge Sandals Handmade in Peru

2 fortress of inca wedge shoes handmade in peru with fair labor sustainabe stye

fortress of inca wedge shoes handmade in peru with fair labor sustainabe stye

4 fortress of inca wedge shoes handmade in peru with fair labor sustainabe stye

Fortress of Inca is a women's shoe brand launched in 2010 in Austin, Texas by Evan Streusand. All of their shoes are handmade in Peru using the finest quality leather and traditional woven Peruvian textiles. Most importantly, the brand ensures fair wages to all of their workers.

These super-fun wedge sandals (c/o Fortress of Inca) are called the Reyna Agata) and I think they're pretty fab. I could see them working with short shorts, white jeans, and maybe even a boho-chic, flowy dress. I could also see myself wearing the black version into fall and winter by pairing them with black tights. 

As for comfort, they're very light for their size and easy to walk in, and they are but one example of a variety of on-trend and colorful styles they produce, from flats to boots to chunky 70s sandals. 

BONUS: My readers can get 20% off with code MYFAIRVANITY20

I put together a few of my favorites from their shop below-- hope you likey as much as I likey!

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