Sustainable Brand: Po-Zu

Fast fashion doesn’t only affect the clothing industry, but the accessories and footwear industry as well. Mass-production eats up resources and sends an average of three pairs of shoes per person to landfill every year. The quest for cheaper and faster production has encouraged the exploitation of workers through long hours, low payments and dangerous working conditions.

Luckily, there are some ethical footwear brands that are busy changing this situation. One of them is called Po-Zu. To them, the worker’s rights are very important. The shoes are made in factories where they are committed to the highest standards of ethical manufacturing, they have a strict non-toxic policy, and they recycle nearly all their waste products, including fabric off-cuts and water.

The materials of their shoes come from naturally renewable sources and are responsibly harvested. They don’t contain pesticides, bleaches or toxic dyes and are locally sourced wherever possible.

On these series of pictures, I am wearing the ‘low cut vegan lace-up’ shoes. They are made from organic cotton and fair trade rubber. The pictures were made in Amersfoort by photographer Marisa Elisa Photography.

Fair trade rubber shoesPo Zu shoesOrganic cotton canvas shoesEthically made shoes

What I´m wearing:
Shirt // Organic Basics Use this code to get 20% discount: OBxsimmonds20 Shop here
Leggings // Stronger
Jacket // Second-hand
Shoes // Po-Zu

With Love,
Alisson

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Natural and Organic Beauty Salon in Amersfoort: Frankie & Olive

The skin is the largest organ in our body. It absorbs most of what it comes in contact with. The majority of store-bought beauty products have artificial colors, fragrances, preservatives and stabilizers that get absorbed through the skin’s pores right into the bloodstream. These products can cause a range of negative long-term health effects. Skin sensitivity, allergic reactions, hormonal imbalances, cancer… the list of side effects and reactions to these chemical ingredients is long and scary. Not to mention the negative impact the production and the waste of these products have on the environment.

Since I started reading about the side effects of regular beauty products I rather not risk a chance for a health problem and have decided to only use organic and natural beauty products. When I discovered that at the beauty salon ‘Frankie & Olive’ the treatments are done with only natural products, I wanted to go and try it out.

Lieselot is the owner of the salon. She works exclusively with 100% natural and organic products. Besides, the products are environmentally friendly and ethically made. I went for a basic facial treatment. It included:

  • Deep cleaning
  • Peeling
  • Removal of impurities
  • Eyebrows epilation
  • Face and neck massage
  • Relaxing face mask

The room of the treatment is decorated in a minimalistic way. There are big windows, which bring in natural light. I felt completely relax and enjoy the whole time. Lieselot is very kind and knows a lot about natural skin care. She has been in the business for 9 years. For the face treatment, she uses products from Phenomé and from Aster & Bay.  They feel good and soft on the skin. All of the products are organic, cruelty-free, fair trade, recycled, and free of plastic and nanoparticles.

Frankie & Olive is a combination of a beauty salon and an art studio. As soon as you enter, you can feel the mix of natural products and modern paintings. The atelier is situated in the Krommestraat 56 in Amersfoort.

If you love natural and organic products then Frankie & Olive is the place for you. The salon is open from Tuesday to Saturday. You can call or make an appointment online here.

Frankie and olive amersfoort

 

Frankie and olive beauty salon Amersfoort

Now you know where to go for a beauty treatment in Amersfoort. If you only want to go there to buy the products that it’s alright! Lieselot will gladly explain to you how to use them. She is there from Monday to Saturday from 10:00 am.

With Love,
Alisson

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Second-hand Shopping in Amersfoort

The fashion industry is the second dirtiest industry in the world. When we think of pollution, it’s hard to imagine that our clothes can cause such a big damage. But the impact of the fashion industry on our planet is quite nasty. This industry is responsible for big amounts of water consumption (32 million olympic size swimming pools per year) and CO2 emissions (8% of global greenhouse emissions). Also, the textile dyeing is a huge polluter of water due to the toxic chemicals the production involves. Not to mention the number of tons of waste. Fashion is a complicated business involving long and varied supply chains of production, raw material, textile manufacture, clothing construction, shipping, retail, use and ultimate disposal of the garment.

But is there something we can do?

Yes! As conscious consumers, we can reduce the environmental cost of fashion. Choosing for sustainable brands instead of fast fashion ones, choosing for eco-friendly fabrics instead of synthetic ones and my favorite: choosing to buy second-hand! Second-hand shopping is more kind to the environment because the garment has already been produced. It gives the item a longer life and it prevents it from landing in landfills.

Second-hand shopping has become part of my lifestyle. Every time I need a ‘new’ piece of clothes, I first go to one of the shops I listed below. If I can’t find what I need, I look for a new piece from a sustainable brand. Here are my favorite second-hand shops in the city I live in: Amersfoort – The Netherlands.

Terre des Hommes winkel Amersfoort 
Address: Kamp 79
Charity second-hand shop. You can also donate clothes here.

Second Lifestyle Amersfoort
Address: Leusderweg 98
Second-hand shop. You can bring clothes to sell. It works with a 50/50 commision.

Emmaus Amersfoort
Address: Hendrik van Viandenstraat 4 & Havenweg 14-16
Charity second-hand shop. They have two shops. The one at Havenweg is the biggest. Go there with enough time. There is a lot of nice stuff, but you have to look well.

Vint Amersfoort
Address: Nijverheidsweg-Noord 74
Big warehouse with different vintage shops. You can find second-hand clothes in the shop of ‘Absolutely Everything’.

Kringloopcentrum Amersfoort
Address: Zwaaikom 21
Charity second-hand shop. This is one of my favorites. They restock the clothes section every day. The kringloopcentrum Amersfoort also has a pop-up shop in the center. It’s called ‘Pop-up winkel Oud Nieuw’. Every season they are in a different location. Check them on Facebook to be up to date about where they stand.

Women2day
Address: Brahmsstraat 8
Second-hand shop. Opens from Thursday to Saturday from 13:00 to 17:00

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Strolling around the city, wearing my all-second-hand outfit.

I hope you will give these shops a try. Do you know a second-hand shop in Amersfoort that is not on the list? Let me know in the comments below.

With Love,

Alisson

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RESTYLE IN AMERSFOORT: RECYCLING AT IT´S BEST

Since I moved to Amersfoort I have been a regular client of “Kringloopcentrum Amersfoort”. I love to go through the clothes section and hunt for treasures. A lot of my outfits have pieces that I bought there. They looked like new and ready to have a longer life. When a sister shop of this Kringloopcentrum opened it’s doors last September, I was eager to check it out and see what they had to offer. I went there and learned more about their concept.

The shop is called “Restyle” and there you will find everything you need for your sewing addiction: Antique buttons, beautiful fabrics, yarns, jewelry, sewing books and patterns and more to perfect your sewing skills. Besides, you can find the nicest vintage clothes and bags. Lastly, you will find clothes from their house brand as well, which has been previously restyled. You can recognize them by the extra logo of a circle. The artist/designer behind this is Sally Pittman. She and a group of other people are constantly giving old clothes a new life.

The atelier where they work is on the second floor of Kringloopcentrum Amersfoort. Up there they are busy with recycling and finding ways to make old textiles into something new. Most of the time Sally makes bags, cooking aprons, pillowcases and more. All fabrics are unique and 100% from recycled materials.

Next time you go to the Kringloop take a look at this vintage initiative.
Restyle is open from Tuesday to Saturday from 13:00 to 17:00 o’clock. The address is Zwaaikom 29A in Amersfoort.

With love,
Alisson

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10 Easy Tips To Clean Up Your Closet

Cleaning up my closet has become a routine for me. Ever since a little kid, my mother encouraged me to donate the clothes that didn´t fit me anymore. With the years I have gathered some experience and here are my tips to help you clean up your closet:

1. Prepare yourself with a nice drink and a happy playlist.

2. Start by taking every single item out of your closet and place them on your bed or the floor.

3. Place one by one the items back in the closet. Before you do it, ask yourself the following questions about each item:

  • Does it still fit?
  • Have I worn it in the last 12 months?
  • Would I wear it again?
  • Do I love the way it looks on me?

If the answer to these questions is yes, then put the items back to your closet, if the answer is no, put them aside and start making two piles:
To donate: If the clothes are too worn out or need to be fixed.
To sell: If the clothes are still in a good state to give it a second round.

4. Hang the items that you want to keep neatly back in your closet. Do so into categories. I like to start with shorts and skirts, then pants, shirts, blouses, dresses, blazers, and jackets. This way the items you want to keep in your closet are organized and clutter free so you can see everything you own at once. Put the shoes neatly on the floor of the closet.

5. Store your seasonal clothes that don´t fit the current season in boxes in your spare space. (Under the bed, in the attic etc) Having only in your closet the clothes that you currently wear, makes it easier to choose what to wear.

6. If you have clothes to fold, do it in an organized way and also into categories rather than in colors.  Make sure your organization works for you and won’t confuse you as to where your things are.

7. Use the backward hanger strategy when putting clothes back into your closet to get a better idea of the items you actually wear often. Face all of your hangers away from you and replace each one the “right way” after wearing the item hanging on it. Check back in a couple of months then a year to see which hangers are still facing the wrong way. Maybe it’s time to get rid of those articles and clean out your closet again?

8. Once your closet is organized, move on to the two piles you made.

9. Put all the clothes of the “donate” pile in a box and leave it close to your door so you bring it to a charity shop as soon as possible.

10. Put the clothes of the “sell” pile neatly on a box and bring it as soon as possible to the nearest second-hand shop. Another option is to sell it in a flea-market or to sell them online via an online platform for selling clothes.

I hope you like these tips and get inspired to clean up your closet and start selling the clothes that you don´t wear anymore. Do you miss any tip? Let me know in the comments below.

With Love,

Alisson

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INTERVIEW FOR THE LOCAL NEWSPAPER

Last month I got interviewed for the local newspaper AD Amersfoortse Courant.

 

Alisson Simmonds in the newspaper
Picture by Frans Kanters

 

Read the whole interview here:
http://www.ad.nl/amersfoort/alisson-promoot-tweedehandskleding~acadb661/

With love,

alisson-simmonds-rosado-con-hoja

DUTCH FAIR FASHION BRANDS IN AMERSFOORT

Since I started to be more conscious about fashion, I get a lot of questions about where to shop in Amersfoort, the city I live in. I did my research and found three Dutch brands that do a good job towards a sustainable way of producing clothes. This is what I found out.

  1. Expresso

Expresso

Expresso is a Dutch fashion brand with a sustainable and social responsibility mission. The brand is committed to a socially responsible production and ensures good working conditions in the factories, sustainable materials and they donate to charities and social initiatives. On their website they give you this tips about how to maintain your clothes longer: 

  • You don’t always need to wash your clothes after you wore it. Sometimes
    you just need to hang them out in the fresh air and that is enough.
  • Use an eco-friendly detergent. Check on the packaging for the EU Ecolabel.
  • If your clothes are not so dirty, you can wash them at 30°.
  • Air dry your clothes instead of using a drying machine.
  • Instead of throwing away clothes, donate them to an organization that makes other people happy with it. Or they might recycle it.

When you are in the Langestraat you definitely have to stop by at this shop and check out their collection. The address is Langestraat 22 3811 AG Amersfoort
The price range is between €24,-  and €200,-.

Read more about Expresso and sustainability here (in Dutch)

Expresso sustainable shop
The lady that works here is really nice! She was kind to answer all my questions about sustainability. Go there and have a chat!
Expresso clothes
Since 2004 Expresso works with the Fair Wear Foundation. This organization monitors the working conditions in sweatshops.

This picture shows the fitting room. They have a pinkish tropical wallpaper. #inlove

2. Anna van Toor

AnnaToor
The mannequins are cool, right?

Anna van Toor is a Dutch fashion brand for women. They are a socially responsible company that cares for the environment. Since February 2013 Anna van Toor is a member of the Fair Wear Foundation.

The address is Langestraat 83 3811 AC Amersfoort
The price range is between €50,-  and €200,-.
Please note that Anna van Toor also sells other brands that are not proven to be sustainable. The brand that is proven is the house brand “Anna” and “Anna Blue”.

Read more about Anna van Toor and sustainability here (in Dutch).

Anna van Toor

Anna v Toor

 

3. Vanilia

Vanilia Amersfoort Langestraat

The Dutch brand Vanilia designs and produces high-quality clothes for women. With the establishment of Vanilia, more than twenty years ago, a private studio was set up in Turkey’s Cappadocia. Vanilia has always been responsible for the entire production and welfare of all employees and invests in good working conditions and secure workspaces. Vanilia is also a member of the Fair Wear Foundation.

Next time you go shopping in the Langestraat stop by and check their collection and the beautiful location.
The address is Langestraat 9 3811 AA Amersfoort.
The price range is between €15,-  and €300,-.

Read more about Vanilia here (in Dutch)

Vanilia Langestraat
The Vanilia boutique in Amersfoort.

I hope you like this post and I hope you will consider these shops when you go to Amersfoort. Please let me know in the comments below if you know more Dutch sustainable brands.

With Love,

alisson-simmonds-rosado-con-hoja

 

 

 

 

Sustainable Brand: The Next Closet

 

 

 

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“A lady knows when it’s time to say goodbye” – The Next Closet

Second hand outfit of the day
I am wearing:

Blazer // size M // Six Ames // via The Next Closet
Jeans // Citizens of Humanity // via The Next Closet
Boots // size 38 // Hugo Boss // via The Next Closet
Bag // via Baggin’You

Do you like my clothes and want to buy an item? Send me a message here.

Photography by Marisa Elisa