{simple pleasures} éclairer: shadows + light

Ring the bells that still can ring

forget your perfect offering

there is a crack in everything

that’s how the light gets in
— Leonard Cohen

illuminate: early morning light and afternoon shadows on a brilliant summer's day illuminating every part of this city, and shining light in the recesses of my mind + body.

{simple pleasures} le pique-nique: an outdoor fête

You belong among the wildflowers,

you belong in a boat out at sea,

sail away, kill off the hours,

you belong somewhere you feel free.
— Tom Petty

le pique-nique: a weekend of hiking, flowers + friends makes for an ebullient heart. sending out good vibes to all the free spirits + wild flowers out there.

{eco mode: thrifted tank + hand-printed, fair trade skirt courtesy of mata traders / hand-crafted ear cuff from eskell / artisan-made earrings by soko}

{eco fashion guide} 12 ethical labels to build a clean closet

1. amour vert / 2. beyond skin / 3. monkee genes / 4. reformation / 5. lindsay lewis / 6. style saint / 7. matt + nat / 8. cities in dust / 9. groceries / 10. nudie jeans / 11. bhava / 12. alas / dress via kaight

two things happen when i receive texts from friends interested in greening their wardrobes: my endorphins start a flowin' +  my mental rolodex starts spinning. actually, perhaps i should liken my mind to a slot machine in vegas {i've never actually been, but i've seen them in the movies! suddenly i feel very much like a country mouse}.

the reels inside my head start turning round + round {depending on the friend or family member that has sent the late night text or early morning inquiry, i factor color + textile, style + price}, then the answers are computed {less randomly than the slots, of course} + jackpot! out pours an indie or eco brand.

above is a handy guide to my favorite eco labels, all tried + tested closet staples and highly recommended by yours truly {i didn't forget about your tootsies, here's a whole post dedicated to socks made with lots of love}. these are all stellar companies putting people, planet + animals above profits.

until next time, stay green dear hearts!

{eco perfumery} essence + alchemy: 8 sensual, sustainable scents

"scent has a profound impact on our lives. smell is one of our strongest senses with the power to evoke different states of mind, and to change our perceptions." lisa hanson

perfumes, like personal style, are such a beautiful expression of self. mandy aftel, renonwned natural perfumer, observed that "aromas can take us anywhere." they serve to comfort + soothe: a deep, bright aroma can uplift + invigorate; a warm, softly aromatic perfume can calm your mood + restore your body's balance.

natural, clean perfumes are created with organic essential oils + plant extractives derived from nature's bounty {flowers, fruits, leaves, roots + more}. most commercial cosmetics + personal care products are made with unsafe petrochemically derived ingredients created in a lab {synthetic fragrances, phthalates + parabens*}. lucky for us, there are lots of sustainable + naturally derived alternatives.

the ingredient lists of eco perfumes often read like a botanist's private journal through a field expedition: notes of birch, amber + pine {those are ingredients worth trying} or cedar, juniper + vetivert {now we're on the right track}. the following bespoke perfumes offer sweet, sensual + downright intoxicating aromas!

{the goods} here are just a few of my favorite eco, artisan perfumes, because the nose knows:

1/ florescent: susannah compton, a self-professed "maker at heart" is the founder + formulator of florescent fragrances, a line of hand-crafted, 100% botanical perfumes made from real flowers, herbs, balsams + spices. susannah is a clean beauty enthusiast who launched florescent in 2015 after working with botanical aromatics for years, blending for therapeutic purposes. eventually she embarked on a personal journey to craft rare botanical essences. sans synthetic fragrance, sans chemical additives + cruelty-free

2/ one seed: seeing a gap in the market for natural perfumery, liz cook decided to yoke her passion for natural health + cosmetics to her passion for entrepreneurial business. liz creates artisanal perfumes made with organic + natural ingredients in the land down under {that's australia!}. she uses plant extracts + essential oils to create original + earthy fragrances, with 10% of profits donated to organizations that help disempowered people throughout the world including australia hope international. one seed offers custom-designed fragrances + aromatherapy blends. organic ingredients, sans synthetics + cruelty-free

3/ lurk: founder + perfumer anne nelson sanford notes that "scent is a really intimate thing. when you have a crush on someone there's this deep affinity for what they smell like. when we use natural elements we're unlocking actual sense memories, rather than approximating through chemistry." * a self-declared tomboy, sanford was always interested in beauty products from a science perspective. sanford was inspired by a passion for sustainable living, eco beauty + the power of essential oils to create . she hand pours and blends her gender-neutral perfumes with organic ingredients. sans synthetics + cruelty-free

4/kahina giving beauty: pioneering entrepreneur katharine l'heureux has put thought into every aspect of her ethical business, from sustainable sourcing to green formulations and environmentally-responsible packaging since 2008. she is dedicated to protecting the environment + giving back to the indigenous people of morocco who grow, harvest + produce her raw ingredients. kahina's warm + exotic fragrances are made with fair trade ingredients sourced from small family farms + cooperatives {offering marginalized women a means of financial and social independence}. 1% of annual revenue is donated to organizations that directly benefit the women of south morocco. organic ingredients + cruelty-free

5/ skin + bones: crowned the natural "oil mixologer" heidi jenkins considers her work with clean skincare + aromatics a part of the burgeoning safe cosmetics movement. heidi launched skin + bones in 2009 with only a single product, her jojoba-based moisturizer. it has since expanded to include a warm, luxurious parfum. heidi believes what you put on your body should be as pure as what you put in it. learning of the healing powers of essential oils {the skin-restoring benefits + therapeutic properties} + drawing upon traditional native american medicine, heidi created her own potion of nurturing essential oils derived from organic botanicals. organic ingredients, sans alcohol, sans chemicals

6/ french girl: kristeen griffin-grimes describes herself as a musician, a dreamer, a former author, and a "farmer at heart with a vaguely engineer-like mind." she's the creator behind the popular, organic skincare line french girl, founded in 2010. kristeen handcrafts her pure + simple products in seattle, washington from wild-crafted ingredients. organic essential oils are sourced from around the globe including the south of france, north africa, australia + the mediterranean basin. organic ingredients + cruelty-free

7/ethica: this online ethical retailer has a collection of scintillating scents for eco boys + girls including perfumes from hi wildflowers botanica + williams + murray + soul sunday aromatherapy rollers {all made with botanical ingredients}. all natural, vegan perfumes. ingredients are sourced from companies who use only ethical practices in line with their own. natural ingredients + cruelty-free

8/ olo: self-taught perfumer heather sielaff hand blends and bottles each fragrance to order in portland, oregon. heather started olo in 2009 with only $200 + an assorted collection of essential oils. her talent truly flourished when she harnessed her creative outlet to her own indie startup vision. olo's blends contain locally sourced essential oils, fractioned coconut oil, key accords and absolutes. sans aldehydes, sans alcohol + cruelty-free

{*the skinny} most cosmetics + personal care products are unregulated in the u.s.a., hence manufacturers are allowed to use hazardous chemicals without labeling them as toxic {fragrances, which are used to scent, are neurotoxins + allergens; phthalates like dbp, which are used to hold scent + color, are reproductive and developmental toxicants}. essential oils have been used throughout history for their physically + emotionally healing properties {and to tempt would-be lovers: legend has it that cleopatra had the sails of her ship soaked in jasmine to lure mark antony}. essential oils boost immunity, ease tension + headaches, promote focus + relaxation, and even help treat depression + insomnia. join the clean beauty revolution. for more information, read no more dirty looks.

{eco challenge} fashion for change: 30 wears challenge, part I

the guardian christened her "the woman who turned the red carpet green". livia firth is an eco fashion activist who has challenged consumers to ask themselves the following question before buying an item of clothing: would i wear it a minimum of 30 times? livia's 30 wears challenge implores men + women to make purposeful purchases rather than buying fast fashion items on impulse. firth asks consumers, "why not care about the clothes we wear? where they were made and what they really cost in human and environmental cost?" 

what exactly is fashion fashion? when i told my mom i was participating in the 30 wears challenge, she was pensive, then she asked, "what constitutes fast fashion?" i explained that not all brands offer transparency in the manufacture + production of their garments. apparel workers often labor for long hours in unsafe conditions + our waterways + ground soil are being polluted in the process

my mom was quiet; i understood she was taking a mental note of her wardrobe. "well," she said thoughtfully, "i don't know if my clothes were produced ethically, but the clothes i do own, i wear again and again. how do you know if something is produced ethically?" i replied, "ask questions." it's okay to be curious, it's okay to ask questions, my friends. this lets companies know that as consumers, we are watching, we care.

interested in learning more about the 30 wears challenge? hop on over to eco-age's instagram account, then hashtag your way into the challenge! i would love to see who is participating and what items you've chosen for the challenge. you can follow my own eco fashion journey on instagram. learn about the slow fashion movement at eco age or read more at ethical fashion forum.

{images via livia firth/eco-age}