Elegantly Eco

Eco-Friendly Beauty, Fashion, Reviews, and Info


Leave a comment

Miik Clothing, Charlotte Cardi and Jamie Buttoned Tunic

About Miik Clothing

I’ve been a fan of Miik Clothing since I learned about them through Adria Vasil, author of Ecoholic. I love that they are local, eco and their clothing is well made. Read more about Miik on their About Us page. Check out the interview with founder Donna Smith below.

I currently don’t have any pictures of myself wearing the Charlotte Cardi or the Jamie Tunic but I’ll beg my hubby to take pictures. You can also check out my Instagram pics of my other Miik Clothing here: Emily Cardigan in Black, Wendy Dress in Watermelon. I’ve just realized I need to take more pictures of my Miik Clothing! I have more pieces than these pictures suggest.


Source

Charlotte Cardi

This cardi is perfect to pair with my summer dresses. It shows off the shape of my dress while keeping my arms and back covered enough so that I won’t freeze while at work. It’s also sleek and simple enough that it doesn’t detract from whatever dress I’m wearing. I work in an office so in the summer time they crank up the AC. I’m prone to getting cold easily, so a cardigan with this kind of shape works perfectly for me. I bought this cardi in black. But it’s pretty hard to see details of the shape and style when you see the picture of the black cardi so I chose the port colour to showcase. As for material the cardi is light and comfortable, not bulky at all. I’ve never heard of sorona before but according to my research it is a biopolymer “containing 37% annually renewable plant based ingredients.”

Materials: 90% rayon-made-from-bamboo and 10% lycra; 55% rayon-made-from-bamboo,
35% sorona and 10% lycra.
Color: Port (Also available in: Black and Ink Blue)
Cost: $175.00 CAD
Available at: Miik Clothing, Logan & Finley, Other stockists


Source

Jamie Buttoned Tunic

I love the Jamie buttoned tunic. It was however, too long for my petite stature. I’m only about 5’3″ so when I first put the tunic on, it was too long to be a tunic and too short to be a dress. I ended up taking it to an alterationist to have it shortened. Now it looks much better on me. The fit isn’t 100% perfect as it hangs on me a little, but I do love this tunic. The colour options are great for one thing, and it’s also the light and comfortable fabric. It has washed well so far and I look forward to years of wearing it. When I have worn it out casually or even at work on casual day, I always get compliments on the colour.

Materials: 90% rayon-made-from-bamboo and 10% lycra. 55% rayon-made-from-bamboo,
35% sorona and 10% lycra.
Color: Port/Red Wine (Also available in: Charcoal Sorona/Port, Black/Charcoal Sorona, Port/Black, Ink Blue/Black, Port, Ink Blue, Red Wine, and Black)
Cost: $165.00 CAD
Available at: Miik Clothing, Logan & Finley, Other stockists

Overall, I would say these pieces are great additions to my wardrobe. At these prices I would consider these investment pieces. Miik Clothing does last a long time if you take care of it properly. So all Miik lovers take heart, your piece of clothing will last with proper care. Also, they do have clearance sales at the end of the season. But you’ve got to be quick because sizes and colours sell out in a snap! Also, while eco-friendly clothing tends to be more expensive, you can rest easy knowing that you’re not contributing to global waste or pollution and the people sewing your clothing are paid fairly. My policy these days is to vote with my dollar! I’m all for fair wages, and eco-friendly, sustainably made clothing.


Leave a comment

Win Tickets to the One of a Kind Spring Show in Toronto!

If you’ve been following along on my blog you’ll know that I love going to the One of a Kind Show (OOAK). I’ve been going since I was a teenager when my high school art teacher took us there on a class trip. It was small back then compared to what it is now. But I still love it for promoting Canadian businesses that we might otherwise not know about. There are vendors from all over Canada that come to the OOAK show! To read more about the history of the OOAK Show click here.

So I’m really, really happy and excited to host a Giveaway for 10 Pairs of Tickets to the One of A Kind Show opening on March 25th and going till March 29th. See details below to enter. Good Luck!




Status: CLOSED

Prize: 10 pairs of tickets to the One of a Kind Christmas Show

Enter Dates: March 18-25

Eligibility: International residents

Winners: Alison H, Mary C, Nicole J, Pam C, Yuen C, Jen L, Eliana B., Rod V, Lisa B, Anna M.

*** CLICK HERE TO ENTER ***

Check out my 2014 post on my must visit booth list here.


1 Comment

@NellaBellaBrand London Bag

Well folks, this is my first big purchase of a vegan bag. I’ve had bags that were vegan before. But my new Nella Bella bag was a big purchase for me because I finally got to replace my old leather Roots bag. Now before you get up in arms that I had a leather bag, let me tell you that I bought that bag way before I went green and cruelty free. That bag is now more than 10 years old. It cost me a lot of money, so when I went eco-friendly I decided I would only replace it when it got worn out. It lasted a lot longer than I expected! But I’m quite happy with my Nella Bella London (Nu Essex) bag. There are a few pros and cons with this bag. If you look at the picture above, it looks like the top part of the bag has a pouch. But it’s actually a separate mini bag that sits on top of the larger bag. The mini bag can be converted into a clutch or shoulder bag with the different straps. See pictures below.


Here’s the mini bag with different straps (cross body, short handle, chain).

I love that you basically get two bags for the price of one here. I tried using both layered on top of each other but found that I liked the simplicity of using just the large bag for everyday use. The mini bag will be useful for when I’m traveling and it’s even nice enough to use at fancy parties. On the back of the large bag you’ll see the logo embossed on the bottom. I actually flipped the bag around and use the backside as the front. Why? There is a zipper pocket there that makes it easy to stash my keys, transit pass and cell phone. Also, the front is the side that the straps latch onto. I found it inconvenient that the straps were in front of the zipper as they get in the way of zipping the bag open or closed easily. But that’s a small thing to complain about in my mind. So I just got used to using the backside of the bag as the front.


This is the front of the bag where the straps latch onto the metal rings in front of the zipper.

Another small thing I found inconvenient is the cross body strap that comes with the bag. It is super long! It’s adjustable thank goodness. But for a petite person like me, I had to adjust the strap to its smallest configuration. I kind of wish I could shorten the strap  by cutting the extra length off, but it wouldn’t look good if I did that. The length of strap wouldn’t be a problem for a taller person though. As for the inside of the bag, my only complaint is that the interior zipper pocket should be larger. I can’t fit all of my cosmetics in there! I’m going to have to buy a cosmetic bag to keep it in one spot in my purse. If you don’t bring much cosmetics with you then you won’t have this problem. But I bring a small mirror, some blotting paper, lip liner, lipstick, lip balm, eye drops, a small tube of hand cream and some stomach medicine with me wherever I go. I don’t always use everything I bring with me but it’s always nice to have on hand in case I need it. Another small thing I didn’t like about the bag: the zipper isn’t finished at both ends. It gives the bag a somewhat unfinished look. I hope in the future they finish both ends. That would look so much better.
The little things that bug me: small interior zipper pocket and zipper isn’t finished on one end.


The large bag with all the different straps (cross body, chain, short handle). Keep in mind what I’m showing as the front of the bag is actually the back.

Pros:
-light, streamlined look
-comes in a variety of colours: red, blue, beige, white
-two bags for the price of one
-different straps for different looks and uses
-large enough to fit a tablet or ereader
-vegan
-affordable
-Canadian company

Cons:
-inside zipper pocket too small
-cross body strap too long for petite people
-strap clips onto front of bag obscuring zipper
-zipper not finished at both ends

Despite the small design flaws, I think that overall this is a good bag and I’m happy with my purchase. I’m sure I’ll get a lot of wear out of this bag. It’s much lighter than my old bag for one thing. It also cleans easier because of the material and there aren’t a lot of external pouches. It has a nice, streamlined look and is large enough to fit a tablet or ereader in the large bag. Even the clutch is a good size. I would definitely consider purchasing another Nella Bella product.

Cost: $98.00 CAD (on sale at Grassroots when purchased), regular price $129.00 CAD
Available at: Grassroots, Logan & FinleyNella Bella, List of other Stockists
Rating: 4/5

Do you have a vegan bag? Have you ever bought Nella Bella’s bags?


1 Comment

Jennifer Fukushima, Monilifera Jacket


Source

Materials: 26% Recycled Wool, 17% Hemp, 14% Recycled Polyester, 13% Nylon, 12% Wool, 12% Cotton, 3% Organic Cotton, 3% Other Fibres, Plastic Buttons.

I’m a lucky, lucky lady that Jennifer Fukushima lives and works in my city. I love her clothing and her ethics. Jennifer makes clothing from recycled and eco-friendly fabrics. If you have ever visited stores like Fresh Collective and Chartreuse Style then you might have seen her work in their stores. 

For those addicted to fast fashion please don’t get sticker shock. Jennifer’s clothing is meticulously sewn here in Toronto. Plus keep in mind the work that goes into each garment. Using recycled fabrics and piecing them together into one whole clothing item takes time and precision. While the clothing can be pricey, I think the quality is well worth it. Just looking at the stitching it looks like a piece of art. The stitches and seams are so neat, clean and they don’t unravel. I have been frustrated in the past when buying eco-friendly clothing that has been shoddily sewn together. No need to worry about that with this piece. The Monilifera jacket is perfect for most seasons except for the warmer months. In the winter time it keeps me warm and is easy to layer with. In the spring and fall it works well as a light jacket. I wore it to the Green Living Show in April and I often wear it at work on casual Fridays. It’s nice enough to wear to the office and casual enough so that you don’t look overdressed if you’re at a casual event. Pick one up when you can! Once the item sells out there won’t be any more. These jackets are limited run.

Cost: $199 (sale), $379 (regular)
Available at: Jennifer Fukushima, Fresh Collective
Rating: 5/5


Leave a comment

@LilikoiClothing haul

Processes
Image Source

Earlier in July Lilikoi Clothing had a 50% off sale and I took that as an opportunity to get myself some things I’d been missing from my wardrobe. Most of these are for fall weather, but why not? I didn’t want to wait until the clearance sales on Boxing Day. So here’s a review of what I ordered from Lilikoi Clothing.

Bullet points about Lilikoi Clothing:

*   “The word “lilikoi” means passion fruit in Hawaii.”
*   Operates out of an office in Nelson, BC, Canada
*   Designer: Barbara Boswell Schutter
*   Barbara studied at KSA in Nelson, BC graduating in 2003. She also studied at the University of Hawaii at Manoa
*   Ethical: All cutting, printing, sewing, and design work is done by local Canadian employees who are well paid for their skill.
*   Sustainable: Uses sustainable fibres such as bamboo and organically grown cotton and linen wherever possible. Takes care in choosing fabrics and suppliers
*   Sizes range from XS to 2X. See size chart here.

Excerpts taken from Lilikoi Clothing Biography page.

Georgia dolman (2)

Georgia Dolman Sleeved Top

Materials: Viscose from Bamboo/Organic cotton/Spandex blend
Color: Teal (Also available in: Gray, Black, Plum & Navy)

This is a nice basic long sleeve top. It’s light enough to be worn alone in 15C weather with pants and when winter comes around I will layer it will a blazer on top. I work in an office so yeah, we have to look spiffy. The feel of the material is nice. It’s smooth against the skin. I don’t know about you but I can’t stand wearing scratchy clothing. It drapes nicely too. The thing about Dolman sleeves is that sometimes they can look too baggy. But Lilikoi has a nice balance here with the sleeves. They are neither too full nor too tight. My one and only complaint about this top is that the neckline is a tad low on me, being of petite height.

Cost: $69.00 CAD
Available at: Lilikoi Clothing
Rating: 4/5

Lorelai-pullover_thumb.jpg

Image Source

Loralei Draped Pullover

Materials: Viscose from Bamboo/Organic cotton/Spandex blend
Color: Plum

Ummm. This was a bit of an impulse buy. It looked great on the website. But when I put it on it makes me look five times bigger than I really am. The draping in the front isn’t slimming in any way. It looks fine on the dolly in the picture. I needed a smaller size. It would have been nice if there were fit details in the description. For example: fit is drapey and relaxed. Size down for a sleeker look. Anyway, I decided not to return it and just keep this for  at home wear. I think this item is sold out because I can’t find it on the site anymore, hence no link to it.

Cost: $84.00 CAD
Available at: Lilikoi Clothing
Rating: 2/5

Elisa
Image Source

Elisa Top

Materials: Viscose from Bamboo/Organic cotton/Spandex blend
Color: Dahlia (Also available in: Black, Teal & Grey)

This top is basically the same style and shape as the Georgia Dolman Sleeve Top but it has a printed design on the side. Same comments as the Georgia Top. I like the print on the side of this shirt. It’s made in the same fabric weight as the Georgia Dolman Sleeve so it can be worn alone or easily layered with in colder weather. Dahlia is a nice mauve-pinkish colour which looks good on my skin tone. Here’s an instagram pic of me wearing the top, below.

Wearing one of my @LilikoiClothing tops today! #canadian #ecofriendly #clothing

A post shared by Hazel (@elegantlyeco) on

Materials: Viscose from Bamboo/Organic cotton/Spandex blend

Cost: $79.00 CAD
Available at: Lilikoi Clothing
Rating: 4/5

Amelie Shrug with Dress

Amelie Shrug

Materials: Viscose from Bamboo/Organic cotton/Spandex blend
Color: Fuchsia (Also available in: Black, Teal, Grey, Navy and Plum)

This shrug is great for pairing with dresses where you want a pop of colour. The shrug’s material feels nice against the skin and covers the shoulders and arms. This is perfect for me to use at the office and keeps me warm enough when the AC is blasting away. I’ve pictured it above with my Annie 50 dress which I bought from Fresh Collective years ago.

Cost: $69.00 CAD
Available at: Lilikoi Clothing
Rating: 5/5

All clothing mentioned above is available at: Lilikoi Clothing or Click here for a list of retailers


Leave a comment

Spotlight on: @loganandfinley

Last year I wrote a post called I heart Canadian-made clothing in which I talked about my favourite boutiques in Toronto. Well, Logan & Finley has become one of my go-to shops whenever I’m in the Queen West area. I always wanted to pick the brain of an entrepreneur, so I asked Julie Skirving, founder & owner of Logan & Finley if I could interview her. She was kind enough to say yes so here follows my spotlight on Logan & Finley. I hope you enjoy it!

image

Location: 670 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario, M6J 1E5, (416) 769-9732
Website:
Logan & Finley
Founder: Julie Skirving

Logan-finley

Why I   Red heart Logan & Finley:
Great customer service is always important wherever you shop. Julie & her employees are super friendly. I always feel so comfortable when I walk in the store. They carry eco-friendly body care brands, clothing for men & women. The décor is so lovely: light, airy & outdoorsy.  Logan & Finley isn’t in my neighbourhood at all. I live in North York. But I still like to come & visit the Queen West area. Every time I go there I always make a point to stop by Logan & Finley to see what’s new in the store & to chat with Julie. I never feel pressured to buy anything. But I always end up walking out with something because the items they carry at the store are just so amazing.

clip_image002[5]     What’s your business background?

clip_image004     I started my career working in a retail store, then became a buyer and a store manager. I worked for many years as an independent, multi-line sales representative selling brands to retail shops. After that I went on to become a sales and marketing manager and brand director/general manager. Most recently I have been working as a consultant in sales and marketing.

clip_image002[6]     Were you always an entrepreneur when you got the idea to open a general store?

clip_image005     I think I have always been a bit of an entrepreneur. I finally realized that I should take the leap and open the business I really wanted to open. I started working when I was 11 and even as a young person, pushed forward new ideas in the places where I worked that proved to be successful. I have been self-employed for more of my career than I have been employed, but always have worked for smaller brands where the entrepreneurial approach worked well.

clip_image002[7]     How did you choose which brands/items to carry?

clip_image006     A lot of research, shopping, product testing and thinking about how different products would be useful to the consumer I had in mind for the shop.

clip_image002[8]     What kind of customers does Logan & Finley attract?

clip_image006[1]     We seem to attract people who like the comfortable style and like the idea of buying good quality products. We do get people who like some of the brands we carry and like the eco or local products. I think we keep customers because they feel that we select the right products and look after them well.

clip_image002[9]     What kind of image did you want Logan & Finley to project in the beginning & has that changed?

clip_image006[2]     I think the image I imagined is similar to the one we project. I want the store to be a place where people feel comfortable, warmly welcomed and would like to return. Also, I would like it to be known for its personal service, good quality, as well as useful and versatile products.

582Q5567 tweeked
Julie Skirving, Founder & Owner of
Logan & Finley

clip_image002[10]     How did Logan & Finley go from being a pop-up store to a full time bricks & mortar store?

clip_image006[3]     I always planned for this to be a permanent shop, but was having a hard time getting landlords to consider me as a tenant, so I decided to stage the business and get it going in a pop-up. Doing this allowed me to start having some sales, establish relationships with vendors and customers and prove my concept. It was a lot of work to move two times in the past year, but I feel like each move got me closer to here. This is where I think Logan & Finley fits: in a great neighbourhood like Queen Street West.

clip_image002[11]     What are the advantages/disadvantages of having a full time store as opposed to a pop-up store?

clip_image006[4]     The advantages are that we get some built in traffic from people in the neighbourhood and have a much greater visibility. We can be open every day and daily sales really help to drive a business forward. The only disadvantage is that my consulting business had to take a back seat to the retail store, and it’s harder to do this work with the regular store hours. But I am getting back to this now, which I enjoy and need to do to support myself while I grow this new business.

clip_image002[12]     Were you ever nervous at the thought of opening the full time store?

clip_image006[5]     There are parts of the business that make me nervous. But being open full time is truly a dream come true. I work in the store 6-7 days a week. I love it and I hope this shows to my customers.

clip_image002[13]     I can confirm that it does show to your customers, Julie. Me being one of them. Most people love a discount. I love your idea of giving people discounts based on the board game they play when they come to your store. How did you come up with that idea?

clip_image006[6]     I love board games and thought it suited the general store concept. I also want the store to be a memorable place. The kind of place where you can relax and have a little fun, and I think this achieved this.

clip_image002[14]     Where do you see Logan & Finley in the future? Do you think you’ll ever do online sales?

clip_image004[1]     I hope that we will become a fixture in the Queen Street West neighbourhood, and are here for many years to come. And yes, definitely hope to have on-line sales up by the fall of this year. One step at a time.

Special thanks go to Julie Skirving, owner of Logan & Finley for the interview. So peeps if you’re ever in the Queen West neighbourhood I recommend you check out her awesome store! You won’t regret it!


Leave a comment

Clean Care Event, Sat Dec 7

cl-care-event-chartreuse
Image from: Clean Care

I’m so late at posting this. LOL. But everyone in Toronto knows there was an ice storm on Sat Dec 21 & our house lost heat & power that evening. Our power didn’t get turned back on until Thu Dec 27. So needless to say I’m now way behind on my posting schedule. Anyway, on with the story. Clean Care had an event at Chartreuse Style on Sat Dec 7th that I attended.  You might be wondering, what is Clean Care? Well, Clean Care “is Canada’s only trusted seal of approval for safer beauty & personal care products, and is the leading provider of confidence & peace of mind to shoppers as they make their purchasing decisions.” If you click on their members page you’ll see a list of companies that ahere to Clean Care’s principles.  They are also now partnering with stores to place Clean Care member products in a store. Chartreuse Style is now one of those stores where you can purchase products from Clean Care members. A bit about Chartreuse Style: they are located at 1692 Queen Street West in Toronto & focus on environmentally friendly apparel, shoes & accessories.  You can shop in person at the store or also shop online. Any orders $100 or over will ship for free within Canada & the USA. See their website for more details.

@marienatie display @chartreusestyle #cleancare @cleancareshop

A post shared by Hazel (@elegantlyeco) on


Here’s a shot of the Clean Care section at Chartreuse Style. You can see some Kynk Naturals, Marie Natie Cosmetics, & Berry Plus products displayed here. I didn’t see any Haut Cosmetics on display, but they are also a clean care member & I have reviewed their products. See that review here. My fave Haut Cosmetics products are their Bio-Mineral foundation & Purifying Primer.

Going to events is always fun. I got to check out Kynk NaturalsMarie Natie Cosmetics, & Berry Plus in person. I bought a Marie Natie lip gloss & also a small bottle of  Berry Plus to try.  I also got to meet Jenise Lee, the founder of Clean Care, who recognized me immediately though we’d never met before. Does my photo really look like me Jenise? LOL. I don’t consider myself photogenic so I hate having my photo taken & rarely post it online for everyone to see. I’d rather be the photographer. Jenise & I chatted briefly. Thanks for the sample by the way! Then I took a quick look around Chartreuse Style. I have to say, it’s a lovely store. The store is bright, spacious & well laid out. There are two change rooms at the back near some shelves displaying shoes & bags.  It’s quite far from my neck of the woods though, so I would probably order from them online rather than coming in person every time. But they do have some of my favourite brands like Echoes in the Attic (Bags), Miik Clothing, Oom Ethikwear, & El Naturalista (shoes).

Resaac bags displayed at @chartreusestyle #cleancare event

A post shared by Hazel (@elegantlyeco) on


Display of bags, shoes, etc near the change rooms at Chartreuse Style

Alas, I had to leave fairly quickly from the event since I was meeting a friend downtown soon after. But please enjoy these shots from the event. Pictures were taken with permission from Clean Care’s facebook page. To see more shots from the event please click on the link.

cc-makeover     Makeover candidate # 1
cc-pic