Thursday, February 6, 2014

The Greenpeace Little Monster Detox. Get on board!

Greenpeace have released a report highlighting the health risks associated with a number of kids clothing brands. Brands include Primark, Disney & adidas. 

Burberry WAS one of the brands on this list, however on the 28th of January Burberry committed to cleaning up their manufacturing processes to omit hazardous toxins from their clothes. 10 000 disgruntled tweeters from all over the world voiced their concerns through twitter to Burberry and the company was forced to make changes.     

The cartoons below display the hazardous toxins which can be found within clothes.

The detox campaign has been a 2 year long campaign

"The Detox campaign has united millions of people across the globe around a shared belief that the clothes we wear should not contain hazardous chemicals or cause toxic pollution. 

Together, we have been able to convince big brands including Zara, H&M and Valentino to commit to clean up their products and work with their suppliers to ensure that no more hazardous chemicals are used to make the clothes we wear.

"Nineteen global fashion leaders have committed to Detox in response to the growing international campaign (Nike, Adidas, Puma, H&N, M&S, C&A, Li-Ning, Zara, Mnago, Esprit, Levi's, Uniglo, Benetton, Victoria's Secret, G-Star Raw, Valentino, Coop, Canepa, Burberry). However, other clothing companies, like GAP, Primark and Disney still need to respond to the urgency of the situation, Detox their brands and help Detox our future." Greenpeace

More information about the toxins in the clothes you can find here

Sign the petition for toxic free clothing here 
Protest directly to brands through twitter here 

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Back in exciting 2014!

 We are back! 

After a tumultuous 2013, we are back on the "i give 2 hoots" band wagon.
I am currently busy working away on the blog and we will have some exciting content for this year. 

If you are a 'CREATOR', a 'MINIMALIST', an 'ENTHUSIAST' or a 'NOSTALGIC' .... or even a mixture? Contact me and we can add you to the group, with the possibility of being featured. 

(you can find the explanation for different categories here)

Monday, August 19, 2013

NOSTALGIC: Restyle! Perth's Op shopping challenge

Perth Fashion week is featuring a very exciting event, Photo-a-day Opshop Challenge. A group of 7 Perth Fashion bloggers have been challenged to a month of styling items from selected op shops (secondhand stores).Each day a different theme is selected and the bloggers must style an outfit around this theme. The selected Op shops include Australian Red Cross, Salvation Army, Vinnies, RSPCA, Anglicare, Good Sammy and Save the Children.
You may recognise Claire (left) from Harbour Master, she is one of 'i give 2 hoots' enthusiasts and was featured on Fickle Sense!

 The themes √≠nclude..............

Here is a selection of my favourite pieces thus far!

Claire - Challenge 2, POLKA DOTS
Monique . Challenge 1,PINK

Adelle . Challenge 5 SEQUINS

Brighita - challenge 13, TYING THE KNOT

Angeline - challenge 4, MIXING PRINTS
Nadine - Challenge 13, TYING THE KNOT

Emily - Challenge 15, LEATHER

So excited to see the next half of styled secondhand items!

Has anyone else taken part in this challenge or something similar? 

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Ethical Fashion Show Berlin: If you do it right, it will last forever

In early July the Ethical Fashion Show came to Berlin! Embarrassingly enough, I have on occasions forgotten about fashion week in Berlin, and only realised when I thought 'There seems to be more trendy people on the streets. Oh it must be fashion week!'. Luckily enough Berlin Fashion week now features eco labels in the Ethical Fashion Show Berlin, so I did manage to make it to some public events.

Here are a selection of notable ethical designers who showcased their products at Ethical Fashion Show Berlin ewerk 2-4th July. 

 Fitness Wear by Prancing Leopard-
I have been searching for ethical sports wear for a while. Prancing Leopard have some great pieces. Loving these 3/4 leggings. Great for yoga and perhaps our marathon run in September. 

Recycled fashion from Mud Jeans - The Netherlands
After meeting the wonderful Christine from Very nice threads, she referred me onto this brand, Mud Jeans. They have developed a great concept where you rent their jeans and then after a period send the jeans back to them. They then recycle the thread to make a new pair of jeans. Genius!

Upcycled clothing from Aluc - Berlin
These guys are wonderfully passionate sustainable fashion designers! They design upcycled shirts (for guys and gals) and have some new items in their store. You can find their shop in Mitte Berlin or online here.

Sustainable underwear from AIKYOU - Germany

Aikyou produce some lovely organic/fair trade pieces and specialise in underwear. They produce quality items and also donate proceeds to the Global Volunteer Network. A win win purchase!

At the moment I am searching for inspiring sustainable labels to list under designers.
Any recommendations?

Thursday, June 13, 2013

MINIMALIST: How to get through a shopping ban with heylilahey

I feel very excited about this post! It is our first 'feature' on i give 2 hoots! and it showcases some Berlin local talent. Mia is a fantastic fashion blogger from heylilahey who has successfully self imposed a 6 month shopping ban on herself. She is nearing to the end of the ban and she is still going strong with less then a month to go! We caught up with her here in Berlin a few months back to get some tips and advice with regards to her shopping restrictions.

Mia                                                                                                     Photos: Michael Dooney

images from


What  inspired your clothing ban?
For a while already I was trying to buy less and shop more consciously and save some money to buy high quality pieces instead of many pieces by H&M & Zara. But it never worked and I wasn't happy at all with my shopping behavior.
I thought this ban could be good for my soul, my style, my creativity and of course for my wallet. And I have to be honest, the whole sustainability and environment friendly thought about this whole project came later, but now I am proud that I am not buying non-recycable plastic handbags and shoes every week. 

How is the ban going so far?

I am now over 3 months already and the 4th month will be over soon, too, as I am super busy lately. It is going pretty well actually. I have not been shopping at all. The only items that I had to buy were new sport shoes (my old ones were just too worn out) and business pants and a business handbag for a job interview, that I won't wear in my private life until July though.

Is it more or less difficult then you had initially intended?
It has been pretty succesful so far and not too hard as I just had more time, money and thought for more important things in life, like thinking about my career, meeting with friends, eating out, working out regularly, travel, etc. However I think it will get really really hard now in May and June when it gets warmer, as I LOVE shopping for summer clothes.

What have your learnt about yourself & the fashion industry through the experience?
It sounds cheezy but I learned that there are better things that can make you happy than new clothes. Before I was an emotional shopper, as I often purchased new items to feel better after a stressful day. Now I just do sport, meet with friends or cook myself a really yummy dinner.
I am also being more creative at putting together my outfits lately and stepping out of my comfort zone.
But I also realize even more now how people in fashion want to see and have new items, new things, new clothes, new shoes every day, and please for a cheap price and a great design! It is also crazy to hear when people say that they could not do something like that even for a month. 

Any encouraging words for those who also want to slow down on their purchasing?
Doing this will only do you good. Just stay away from it for a while like me, give yourself a month or so of no shopping at all, like going cold turkey. I tried to do the 1 item per week rule, but it just didn't work for me and other friends had problems with that, too. In that time of no shopping really assess your wardrobe and wear everything that you haven't worn yet or only once, even if you have to create completely new outfits out of your comfort zone. Stepping out of your comfort zone is always a great experience.
Also during this ban you will realize what you really need and afterwards you will have saved up some money and buy your most craved for item, let's say a pink handbag, in higher quality. These are just my tips. I would be happy if you tried it and shared your experience with me.

Mia                                                                                                     Photos: Michael Dooney

 Track Mia's last few weeks of the ban on heylilahey

Would you be able to buy no clothes for 6 months? 

Friday, May 31, 2013

MINIMALIST: Wise words from Viviene Westwood

These wise words from Viviene Westwood define the mentality of the Minimalist! I found this quote on pinterest (Pinned by  Sass Brown, author of the book Eco Fashion) and just had to share it on the blog. 
One of the first things that I noticed when I came to Europe was that there are plenty of affordable clothing options.  Shops like H&M and Zara make it easy for girls and guys to be fashionable on a budget. Another thing that I noticed were the mountains of clothing that girls were taking to the register. Perhaps affordability has motivated 'excessive buying'. The culture of online shopping and fashion blogging have unequivocally contributed to this fast fashion theme. I just hope that people do start to curve their spending and take on Viviene's wise words.

Watch this space for TIPS regarding being a minimalist!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

CREATORS: Independent Sewing Pattern Companies

Photo: michael dooney

Sewing is certainly growing in popularity, which is really exciting! There are new sewing blogs, shops and courses starting up all over the world every week. Accompanying this rise in popularity are the independent sewing pattern company's. These indie companies produce dress patterns which are unique, personal and cater for specific styles and needs! Head over to Zoe's blog 'so... zo, what do you know?' as she has written a great post regarding the positives in sewing from independent patterns!

I must say that I hadn't really jumped on the indie pattern band wagon until recently. I have been sewing from my own patterns lately, but I must admit that I have enjoyed following the instructions and have learnt a few new sewing techniques, which is always a positive move! These patterns value personal sewing development and therefore tend to add a few tips here and there. Great for improving your sewing skills! 

The marvelous Meg from Meg Made This is an active creator and blogger who has been reviewing patterns for a while now. She has recently made some mens garments and is sharing her love for indie pattern companies by having a giveaway on her blog. The pattern is called Newcastle Cardigan from the Thread Theory. These guys will be releasing more mens patterns within the coming months, which is great news. I sew garments for my man, so I am happy to see more mens patterns out there!

 Head over to Meg Made This for her Thread Theory pattern giveaway!


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Tracking my eco/ethical fashion label journey #1 Feelings of despair

Tracking my progress & sharing my findings
At the moment I am in the process of starting my ethical/eco clothing line. I plan to share my experiences, thoughts, tips and disasters with you, so you can track my progress! .... and perhaps help to prevent you from making the same mistakes. 

The beginning stages - Finding the fabric
For the last year I have been working towards this goal of getting my ethical/eco clothing designs out there. I started with screen printed tote bags and I am now moving onto clothing .... well I am trying to. I believe so strongly in the eco/ethical production of textiles and have therefore been trying to source affordable eco/ethical textiles. This process has been a little more challenging then what I had initially envisaged. I was ready with my designs before Christmas... it is now months later and still I don't have the fabrics.

I did find a local wholesaler, but they have massive delays on their fabrics. So my plans have come to a screeching halt. It is also frustrating as the communication is not great from the company. One problem is that these companies are newly established themselves, so they are probably on a steep learning curve too. Sustainable fashion is not a mainstream concept yet, so there are not a great deal of stores which stock affordable eco fabrics, so the pickings are slim. But I am still optimistic and feel that it is the right way to go. For the moment, I have come up with a short term solution, where I have ordered fabrics from a UK distributor. It is a little more expensive for the particular fabrics that I want, but a less time wasting option. Plus the people at the shop are great! And I have ordered other types of fabric from them too. If you are looking for some affordable organic and ethical fabrics, then I would recommend this shop. Their communication is good and they send products fairly quickly. Here is a link to Organic Cotton.

Watch this space for ongoing updates of my progress!

Has anyone else had similar experiences? Perhaps it is difficult to source second hand fabrics in your city (it is in Berlin). Or you do not have an organic fabric store close to where you live. Or, like me,  are you waiting and waiting for stock (materials or clothing) to be available.

What challenges have you faced on the ethical/eco/sustainable front?

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Being an Optimistic Realist

The 2 words which best encompass the ideals within 'i give 2 hoots' are 'Optimistic Realism'. Optimistic Realism is a term used by Martin Seligman, the positive psychology guru. Optimistic Realists 'are cautiously hopeful of favorable outcomes, but they do as much as they can to obtain the desired results'.

I want to share my optimism regarding the many ways people can be apart of the slow fashion movement, yet I recognise that we need to be realistic about it too. Even though I am on an 'only eco/ethical/recycled clothing path', I do appreciate that it is difficult to do and it is a process. So by being a creator, enthusiast, nostaligic or minimalist you are engaging in a type of slow fashion.

Recognising our positive choices is so much more productive then complaining about what we are not doing. But I do hope that the blog will act as a reminder and encourage us to be mindful of our purchases.

I have compiled some images which signify my successes and not so eco or ethical fashion choices.

A few of my slow fashion successes .....

My favourite dress and refashion.   

I designed and knitted these shorts for my sis a while back. They are still one of my favourite creations. 

This jacket is one of my favourite second hand finds. 5 years ago I found this jacket and it is still going strong:) 
photo: Michael Dooney

My not so sustainable fashion choices   
In areas of basics and sportswear I have struggled in the past.

When I first came to Europe I bought a few clothing items (like thist-shirt and cardigan) from some popular chain stores...though I did make the shorts.
photo: Michael Dooney

Sports wear is a weakness for me. I just love a lot of the sports wear around, especially the pinky/purpley items. Extra feminine!
This year we are running in the Berlin marathon, so I need to make some comfortable, (non chaffing) clothing. 

We went snowing boarding this year. I could only afford the cheap & cheerful stuff. Soccer was the same, cheap & nasty boots!

I am getting married at the start of next year and I will be making my wedding dress, bridesmaid dress & hopefully (given that I am organised) my man's suit. I definitely can not afford to purchase sustainable fabrics, therefore I am not having an eco wedding:( The image below is kind of close to the colour that I have for my dress.

So there you have it, my flaws and proud moments.

What are some of your successes (or not so successful) sustainable purchases?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Hello & welcome to 'i give 2 hoots'. I am very excited to start a space which aims to acknowledge people's successes and inspire others to become involved in the slow fashion movement. 

Who am I?
I started the blog Fickle Sense with my sister in 2010. Fickle Sense has mainly featured my sewing/design ventures, my finance's awesome photography & everyday happenings. I also have my own Fickle Sense etsy store where I produce eco friendly accessories and garments.

Why start a slow fashion blog?
I believe that slow fashion is an absolute necessity for the fashion industry and it is the only way forward! I also believe that there are many different ways in which we can choose to be apart of the movement. That is why I have devised these four categories; creator, enthusiast, nostalgics, minimalist. Have a look at the table below!

What category do I fall into?
I would consider that I am a mixture.
1. A Creator.
I make nearly all of my own clothes & I make garments & accessories for my store 
2. An Enthusiast
I endeavour to source eco type textiles. I really try to use as much organic & fairtrade / or second hand materials as possible.
3. A Nostalgic
I go to markets and second hand stores to source garments for refashioning or (if it is the right size and style) to wear. 

Who can be listed on the blog?
Those of you who are engaging in activities which fall into any of these four 'i give 2 hoots' categories I would love to hear from you! I totally believe that there are so many people out there flying the slow fashion flag in their own way (maybe you don't even know that you are engaging in slow fashion practices). It is about time that we acknowledge those who are doing the right thing in there own way, and this is the space that is doing just that.   

Check out the ABOUT page to check out how to be included in 'i give 2 hoots'