Sustainability 101: The Valentine's Day Self Gifting List
We know that women want more from their wardrobe but that the world of ethical, sustainable and local fashion can be a minefield. We've tried ticking all the boxes for you in our own collections, but we know we don't offer everything just yet. In a world of greenwashing, Instagram influencers and endless googling, sustainability can be a nightmare to navigate. That's why we're introducing Sustainability 101, as a definitive account of who we really trust as industry insiders. Each month we'll aim to bring you the brands, and voices, who cut through the noise.
Who says you have to wait until next year to get the finer things in life bought for you? Treat yourself to some ethical treats if you don't get what you desire. This month we're offering you sustainable self gifting options with everything from flowers to jewellery and perfume.
One for nominative determinism, Lily runs her independent flower company in North Yorkshire, but delivers her seasonal offerings UK wide. All flowers are packed in order to reduce waste, with recyclable packaging.. Known for her unique and unusual combinations of flowers, each bouquet Lily creates is unique.
Founded on the belief every woman deserves to thrive, Bread and Roses are more than just a flower company. They share our passion for supporting women by training refugees in floristry, while providing them with the space to learn English, develop skills and build their confidence in the process.
Stating out as a horticulture project supporting people with learning difficulties Organic Blooms are a sustainably focussed social enterprise, just like us. All flowers are in season, and grown without the use of artificial chemicals and were named as one of the first Soil Association Certified growers in the UK. As well as growing and selling only seasonal flowers, Organic Bloom offer a variety of workshops ranging from bouquet workshops to grow your own cut flower business workshops.
Focusing on a circular economy, Sana Jardin encourage women in their supply chain to become micro-entrepreneurs, by up-cycling waste products from perfume production. They offer a number of socially conscious scents ranging from 'Fresh and Sunny' to 'Spicy and Interesting.' Oh and it's zero waste as well.
Born out of her experience in the beauty industry, Michelle Feeney created Floral Street in a bid to create broader social awareness and change. Michelle is vocal about sustainability being at the core of the company as well as not solely using sexuality to sell scents. With an impressive product collection, the company makes perfume, bath products and home fragrances.
Harry Specters is chocolate with a conscience. Young people with autism are involved in every aspect of the business - from the making and packing to design and photography. The social enterprise has won 34 awards in just 5 years. Their Valentine's Day offering features 19 specials at a range of prices, making them perfect regardless of budget.
For a chocolate brand that offers Living Wages and breathtakingly stylish wrappers, check out Ocelot. All packaging designs are made with owners Matt and Ish's own, FSC certified paper stock with their trademark minimalist designs. To make the most ethical product possible, the pair have opted to take a smaller profit margin while offering a living wage to their workers. They currently offer 7 flavours as well as a "Chocolate Library" that can be customised for each customer, perfect for valentines day.
Originally created as an alternative to Dairy Milk, and racking up over 50 years in the sustainable chocolate industry, Plamil are the longest-running plant-based business in the UK. Plamil chocolates are made out of 100% renewable sources and all made in their own factory. As well as their standard bars, Plamil offer seasonal hampers throughout the year.
A classic take on a wardrobe staple, our Birdsong designed jewellery are fair trade essentials that can be worn for years to come.
Hand made by Pooja, Praniti, Asha, Vimla and Rekha, at a Living Wage jewellery making co-operative in Jaipur, India. Traditionally, metalwork has been deemed a 'male skill', however our supplier ‘JUST’, works specifically with co-ops with specialised women's programmes to teach them metalwork alongside entrepreneurial, managerial and design skills.
Made with responsibly sourced 0.925 Sterling Silver or with 18k Gold Plating on that base. Try our signature pendent necklaces in gold or silver.
Launched in 2005 by Ayten Roberts, this Brighton based luxury lingerie brand has been recognised for more than just their designs. Ayten uses traditional British skills and works with upcycled vintage lace, Bamboo and Peace Silk. The company offer a bespoke service, allowing their customer to be part of the design process. T
The brainchild of Pia Conghan, a lifelong veggie, Pia was compelled to create ethical, investment pieces that flatter a range of body types. Lingerie specialist Cora Harrington described the brand as "a vision of luxury that's meant to be opulent, extravagant, and completely over the top... but is also rooted in real-world, global concerns."
Tisja Damen don't follow trends or release new collections every week, instead offering timeless collections that are made so you can combine or add pieces. Their website reads like a story and evokes a personal touch. The brand strives to be as sustainable as possible by avoiding unnecessary transport, upcycling and making sure all companies in their supply chain share their ethically motivated mindset.
Any more suggestions? Get in touch below in the comments or on our social media @birdsonglondon