Most clothing items available are produced in horrific conditions at worst, and less than ideal conditions at best. Not to mention the chemicals in the clothing, toxic chemicals in dyes, etc. And even what doesn’t end up on the clothes (that go on your skin for 12+ hours a day), goes into the ground and soil surrounding the area where the raw materials are grown or manufactured.
For what? Jewelry that breaks within weeks of getting it and poor-quality clothing that has rips, tears, or busted seams in less than a year. Know how many packs of cheap boxers we bought for my husband last year, only to have them develop holes or broken elastic within a couple months? 6. Six packs.
Compared to the JP Mucklestone boxers (linked below) which, while carrying a higher price tag at the initial purchase, have held up beautifully over the last few weeks of testing. This year our family commitment was to replace our cheap and harmful clothes with higher-quality replacements that would not harm the earth, the people who made them, and would LAST. Guilt-free clothing that won’t be on the replace list within a few months.
One thing we’ve learned lately is that cheaper isn’t always better. We’ve found this to be true with appliances, tools like chainsaws, and other items like furniture. So with this in mind, I’ve put together a great list of organic, sustainable, or made in the US, clothing and jewelry/accessory items. Some of these I’ve been able to review personally and some I found as a result of research and HARO request responses from the company. If you know someone I left off the list, email firstname.lastname@example.org and watch for more in-depth reviews this summer of more of these items.
Sustainable, Organic, or Made in the US Clothing Items
JP Mucklestone – Made in the US of the highest quality materials, the JP Mucklestone under garment line is top quality and super fabulous. If you’ve ever had under garments fall apart, get stretched out, fade, or rip within just a few months of owning them, you know how awful it is to have cheap quality pieces made overseas that you can’t rely on. My husband is loving the JP Mucklestone boxers for their durability and comfort.
Synergy Organic Clothing – Organic clothing in vibrant colors at reasonable prices – a total win/win. I loved the wide variety of styles that were available and the “dressy casual” that I personally adore. See the full review I did of the Synergy brand organic clothing here.
Ibex Clothing – Made from sustainably produced wool sourced from ethically raised animals, Ibex clothing has a lot of options for sports, outdoors, and everyday wear. I will be reviewing the OD Noe woman’s shirt soon and I love that the high-quality products are made to truly last, not be replaced a year from now when they fall apart.
Zady – Zady specializes in fashionable pieces that are made sustainably, made in the US, or produced with fair trade options. For example, a couple of my favorites are: the Cuevas Sweatshirt is marked as “Made in the US” and the Zipped Crewneck Sweater is handmade with specialty materials.
Cariloha Bamboo Clothing – Bamboo as clothing? Amazing! The colors are super vibrant, which I love, but the clothing is made with eco-friendly processes, and many of them are made with bamboo. Bamboo is a cooling fabric, perfect for summer or sports, and it grows quickly making it one of the best sustainable resources we have available.
Brooklyn Makers – Bamboo and organic cotton tee-shirts (as well as other organic products) are available through the store, and while I didn’t have a chance to review them, this Red Feathers Tee looks really fun and is definitely something I would wear.
BTC Elements – Eco-friendly clothing boutique that has some very stylish pieces. My favorite BTC Element piece is this Ingi top – super pretty with a cool strap.
Sustainable, Organic, or Made in the US Jewelry and Accessories
Chrysalis Cardi Scarf/Dress – I wasn’t sure whether to put this one in the clothing section or the accessory section, because it can work as both. This super flexible item is ethically made in Canada using eco-friendly practices and it can be worn a multitude of ways, as both as scarf, or dress, or shirt. Pretty cool.
Pelcor USA Cork Accessories – Cork? Seriously, I had no idea about cork as a sustainable accessory until Pelcor emailed me in response to my HARO request. Cork is a plant based fabric that can be grown and harvested sustainably and produces high quality materials. I especially love the belt, like this thin belt, and the handbags like the Ema satchel.
Cortizza Cork – Another cork company, I was especially intrigued by the necklaces and other jewelry pieces. I’m transitioning all of my jewelry to sustainable, fair trade, repurposed metals, etc. Check out these cork necklaces! Aren’t they cool?
Artisans in the Andes – Oh I love this organization. This group uses natural resources from the rain forest, such as nuts and seeds, to create beautiful pieces of jewelry. The best part is that because these areas of the rain forest are used for sustainably harvested nuts and seeds, the forests aren’t being pushed over for farm land. They are commercially viable while still being preserved for natural habitat and animals. You can see a sample of the beaded necklace and earrings made of acai nuts in this post about Synergy Organic Clothing.
Isabelle Grace Jewelry – Made from recycled materials, these repurposed jewelry pieces are also handmade right in the US. I got a chance to see the Isla bracelet, and I love the vintage-meets-modern design of the piece. It is the perfect dress-up but not overdress piece for me.
Hipsters for Sisters – Who knew fanny packs could be cool again? These belt packs are are not only produced in the US, but also have organic cotton interiors and certifed eco-friendly exteriors. There are a variety of designs but this is probably my favorite, the black belt bag in silver.
Canopy Verde – Eco-friendly and organic handbags make shopping for purses twice as fun. I love this Cassia Weekender for it’s classic lines and design. It has organic cotton and wood trim details making it gorgeous, earth-friendly, and beautiful.
Wild Mint Jewelry – Beautiful handmade jewelry pieces from repurposed metals, all the items are lead-free, nickel-free, and cadmium-free. I am especially fond of this silver leaf design, Fern Acres. Pretty, aren’t they?
Bits of Love Jewelry – Another artisan jewelry designer that uses recycled sterling silver and earth-friendly packaging options. I especially love the word play in the rings.
Cariloha Bamboo – Mentioned above for their vibrant and cool bamboo clothing, I had to mention here the awesome bamboo and coconut belt I reviewed from them. It’s completely awesome and I’ll have a full review of it coming this summer.