eco brand: kindom, recyled fashion never looked so good

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there's an expression i like to use + i use it often: "until kingdom come" - i use it when i know there will be a long wait for something - like my favorite vegan chocolate bar to be restocked or when i'm rushing to meet a friend, but the dryer at the laverie is in super slow mo and won't release my favorite trousers from its jaws. i was happy to discover the eco brand kindom this summer because this is exactly the kind of ethical label that i love to wear. 

i'd been searching for a fresh summer dress for my capsule wardrobe, something easy, something singular with a little urban edge: i had to laugh when i found this sustainable frock as it occurred to me that "kindom" has finally come, and the wait is over {yes, you know i love a clever play on words}.  

here is a transparent slow fashion label that produces apparel with respect to the environment + its workers and seeks to create employment opportunities for indigenous people to preserve ancient traditions of handicraft as well. how does one fashion brand make this happen? by producing a perfectly willowy column dress for the minimalists of the world; a demure, celestial dress adorned with planets and stars for moon-gazers like me; and boho graphic tees for girls with sustainability + style on the mind. 

let's start with the ingredients: sometimes we want a simple garment to do all the work for us, especially on a hot summer day or a sultry night. light, breathable fibers do a happy eco girl make. kindom uses organic cotton, bamboo, hemp, and tencel to craft their designs. they also use discarded stock inventory that would otherwise end up in a landfill. 

the designs are made with active girls in mind, with comfort clearly a priority. i've strolled the streets of chicago in this fun, cosmic dress; i've investigated new york city's vegan scene in it; and i've explored paris farmers markets while wearing this easy, breezy number and it's quite chameleonic - fitting into any milieu with its modern cut + an unexpected print. 

this frock is the kind of design that people stop + ask me about. it's with feverish excitement that i share fashion notes: this dress was made by happy hands from recycled textiles!

those of you that know me here at eco voyage or follow me on instagram know that i like my looks to be fuss-free, but i do love a plucky piece with personality, and a design with a little something special is always welcome in my closet. as i hop from daytime outings to evening soirees, i always look for pieces that can keep up + wear well. 

i'll be easing out of summer and into cool-weather months by wearing this dress over a black turtleneck and pairing it with my faux leather moto jacket + vegan booties, because this is one piece that will see many wears on this green gal's slow fashion journey.

check out kindom and their newest line of brilliant bags hand dyed by artisans and hand-embroidered by the t'boli tribal people. this is the future of fashion, boys + girls.

this post was written in collaboration with kindom. all views are honest + my own. 

green crush: meet klara of just easy nice

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meet klara | just nice easy

location | germany

eco voyage's green crush series showcases green living advocates who are committed to mindful lifestyles and dedicated to protecting both the environment + all those who inhabit planet earth.  today, we meet the creative + daring blogger with the jane birkin locks + a passion for animal activism. this is klara from just easy nice, an animal rights activist + sustainable fashion maven who shows us that vegan style is limitless.

live

ev: what is one small action you might encourage others to take to live a more compassionate, cruelty-free lifestyle?

klara: Love and respect yourself so that you can love and respect others. And let every single choice you make come from a place of deep respect for the lives of all living beings. You lose nothing in the process––meanwhile they gain everything.

love

ev: tell us one-three personal qualities about yourself that you would never change?

klara: I’m glad I’ve always loved myself, which is why I’m deeply empathetic and protective of others’ lives, justice, and freedom. I’m lucky I’ve always been an independent thinker, and one who’s had clarity, consciousness, and self-awareness from a young age––because of that, my beliefs and values have remained consistent from the time I was very young. I’m also glad that I’m silly, and love to have fun. Simply put, I wouldn’t change that I’m empathetic, clear-minded, and fun-loving.

learn

ev: how and why did you decide to go vegan and to pursue a green lifestyle? are there books/movies which you might recommend to others who are interested in learning more about the issues of animal rights and sustainability?

As a fashion-conscious person, I realized how easy it was for me to maintain all of my style preferences while being vegan, and I decided that might be something worth sharing with others.

klara: Being vegetarian at an early age wasn’t a decision I made, it was more like a realization. After that, I instinctively went food-vegan, without outside influence or prompting. It was logical, and I didn’t think ingesting another animal’s milk meant for her babies made any sense at all. The first animal rights organization I supported financially was the American Society for the Prevention of the Cruelty to Animals, because I adored pit bulls so much (still do) after spending time with one, and I was horrified at the way they were often being abused. After that, I didn’t feel like it was enough for me to simply not support animal cruelty through my consumer choices; with the amount of suffering that was going on in factory farms and in all forms of animal agriculture [widely disseminated videos show the inner workings of factory farms today**warning: graphic content], I realized I had to speak for all the sweet animals trapped inside cruel human-derived systems. That’s when I really became an activist. After that, I went full ‘fashion-vegan’, in 2012.

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I started blogging about vegan fashion to show how easy it was for me, and hopefully to inspire others.

The sight and smell of animal leather and idea of wool was making me feel ill; I couldn’t support that cruel industry anymore. At that point, I had canceled all of my fashion magazine subscriptions because the sight of fur on their pages literally sent chills up and down my spine. I started blogging about vegan fashion to show how easy it was for me, and hopefully to inspire others. Then I created Just Easy Nice. My passion for vegan fashion and style is why I continue to talk about it. For those who want to go vegan, I’ve always recommended Cowspiracy. I supported Cowspiracy as a Kickstarter project, and by now, it has had an enormous global impact on people, businesses––even policy. It should be required viewing for anyone living on this planet, and it’s been an incredibly effective and crucial part of the vegan movement.

work it 

ev: you create weekly content for your website and for social media; it takes a lot of time + dedication to sustain your own blog. what motivates you to do so? 

klara: Sometimes, I feel like there’s too much content everywhere. This is an era of content overload, and it starts to feel like a lot of noise. I don’t want to add more noise to our day-to-day world. But I always go back to wanting to be one more voice for the animals, and I hope what I add to the conversation can feel like music instead of noise.

wear it

ev: describe your favorite outfit from head to toe including any favorite vegan fashion brands.

klara: My favorite outfit is a button-down blouse I’ve had for years worn with my off-white flared jean trousers, and my ‘Beatle-esque’ Ana EcoStone heel boots by Bourgoise Boheme. That outfit captures my style. Whatever the season, I love wearing flared jeans/trousers with a button down or a T-shirt.

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into the calm

ev: what do you do to decompress when you're feeling a little stressed?

klara: I love listening to feel-good music––i.e., soft rock and easy listening songs from the 1970s. Listening to Steely Dan always makes me smile. More than anything, I love hanging out with my tabby twin kitty girls and my husband, my three best friends. We have a lot of fun hanging out together. Watching silly movies, or soaps (like the Dynasty reboot:)) is also a favorite way to relax and unwind.

get happy

We should each take the very best care of our own vessels that we possibly can. We are stewards of these vessels––just as we are here to care for our loved ones, all other living beings, the planet. Taking good care of our selves is an ideal start.

ev: share four things that make you really happy.

klara: My husband and the twin kitty girls, coffee, blue skies, and karaoke.

it's a bird, it's a plane, it's a superhero

ev: if you could invite three people to a private dinner party, who would they be?

klara: I’d love to invite [French film director] Eric Rohmer, [American musician, photographer + animal rights activist] Linda McCartney, and [English actor, Sir Bond] Roger Moore. **Side note from editor: I would really like to be at this dinner. 

ev: if you had one superpower, what would it be?

klara: My one superpower would be to make every single person in the world nice. That’s the most impressive power I can imagine.

a beautiful mind

ev: how do you define beauty? 

klara: Beauty comes from taking care of ourselves––our bodies, our minds, our spirits. We should each take the very best care of our own vessels that we possibly can. We are stewards of these vessels––just as we are here to care for our loved ones, all other living beings, the planet. Taking good care of our selves is an ideal start. We have to do what we can, whatever the situation. Stephen Hawking took the best care of his mind and spirit, and look how long his body was maintained because of that self-care. And that’s beautiful. The more one takes care of oneself, the more one can have a positive and beautiful impact on others. The cruelest people are those who do not take care of their own inner needs. True beauty comes from deep, inner self-care. Some people do that instinctively. I wish others could learn to do that.

say anything

ev: do you have a favorite quote or motto that inspires you?

klara: My motto for the past several years has been Animals are not fabric and Please have respect for all species. My lifelong motto is have fun and enjoy yourself without hurting anyone else in the process.

images c/o just easy nice

find klara here: website | instagram | facebook | twitter

simple pleasures: le refuge

In books I have traveled, not only to other worlds, but into my own. I learned who I was and who I wanted to be, what I might aspire to, and what I might dare to dream about my world and myself.
— Anna Quindlen

this week's simple pleasures takes us to this beautiful courtyard outside of paris. i sat here + did what i love to do: meditated on my many blessings, listened to the wind in the trees + watched the world go by: children on scooters, elderly couples holding hands, young lovers. this is the perfect place to read, to revel in solitude + refine one's soul. may you all travel to destinations that light a fire within your heart +bring you boundless peace.