by Deborah Anderson
We all love an independent market don’t we? Seeing small-business owners making their dreams happen, talking to them about their journeys and discovering new products is all part of the joy. The pandemic may have stopped us from physical markets but that doesn’t mean we should miss out! Last Friday, Delightful Tack – an online platform supporting and promoting sustainable fashion brands held a Virtual Fashion Market. Throughout the day, they posted on their grid about different sustainable fashion brands and we were lucky enough to be one of them! New discoveries were made and exclusive discounts were given, with all brands offering up to 16% off! Just like any indie market, the atmosphere of inclusivity and support still managed to come through the phone screen and we are incredibly proud to have been part of it. In case you missed it, here was the amazing small-business line-up.
The first brand in the spotlight was Marzipan Clothing. Founded 2 years ago by Clarissa and based in Surrey, Marzipan Clothing sells handmade crochet clothing and accessories – all made-to-order using ethically sourced yarns. From, adorable earrings to cute knit jumpers, she’s got you covered. The real stars though are the crochet bralettes - ranging from striped to fruity to floral, there are so many styles and colours to choose from! Custom orders means that there is 0% waste which is very important to Clarissa. “Sustainability is at the heart of my business and fast fashion is something that goes against all my brand rights.” What a green queen! Go check her out at @marzipanclothing (Instagram, Depop, Facebook)!
The second act was Bees Knees Apparel! Selling one-off, authentic vintage and reworked fashion on Depop, ASOS Marketplace and their website, owner Bee wanted to create a brand that was original, dynamic as well as environmentally friendly. She describes her garms as “a fusion between classic vintage styles, designs and materials with modern day trends!” Both guys and girls can get their hands on everything from wacky flamenco dresses to more relaxed streetwear like spray-painted dungarees. All materials are used and scraps get repurposed into patchworks, scrunchies and face masks. Find them on Instagram or www.beeskneesapparel.com!
Up next was Gizelle, a London-based, “slow, high fashion brand championing up cycling and gender non-conforming, adjustable and multi-wear looks”. The founder and designer, Kayla turns waste materials into such garments, each one with a striking and powerful statement. Some are perhaps unspoken, others are not so much – their range of vegan and organic ‘Fuck the Patriarchy’ hoodies are a strong example. Their wearable art pieces certainly can’t be ignored and this is solidified with futuristic neon colour. Kayla’s creativity knows no bounds. She says, “I love upcycling and I’ll work with anything I can find”. She’s not kidding – one of their featured dresses was made using an old PVC tablecloth and trampoline net! See her other wacky projects on Instagram @gizellecollective
A tough act to follow but we did our best – it was us! London-based One Wear Freedom is the UK’s first 100% eco-friendly clothing hire service for women. Everything from our packaging to our dry cleaning service is either recyclable or kind to the planet. Got a special event coming up? Or just fancy dressing to the nines next Tuesday? We’re here for it – literally! You can rent gorgeous vintage, up-cycled or handmade items for as little as £4.99! Some pieces were even designed by founder Jordache herself! When asked what inspired her to start One Wear Freedom she says, “It was born out of discovering my top passions: nature, fashion and sharing. Realising how at odds they all were with each other, how much I was shopping and how often I’d lend stuff out. So why not put it all in one! Share my passions and style while trying to save the planet!” For every order placed, one tree will be planted somewhere in the world. What’s not to love about that? Order before 30th October to get 10% off – just use the code DFTOVM10! Find out more about us on Instagram @onewearfreedom or our website!
Following on was Atlanta-based B U Go Off (or BUG off for short). They personify all that was great about the noughties era with their line of up-cycled, handmade clothing and jewellery. From their cute motif long-sleeved tees to their charm pendant necklaces, you’ll be dressed like your fave 00s film characters in no time. They provide a dose of much needed nostalgic relief and remind us of the souvenir necklaces we’d beg our parents for on childhood holidays that we all wish we still had. Well, now we don’t need to – thanks B U Go Off! Take a trip down memory lane on their Instagram or www.bugooff.com!
Next up was Prague-based Saintology. When fashion graduate Sandra found herself with no job in lockdown, she felt it was the perfect time to start up her brand. They sell dreamy pastel tie-dyed hoodies, upcycled graphic tees and now t-shirts with their own gorgeous designs. All dyes used are non-toxic, and the designs are all screen-printed by locally. She says “I am determined to create sustainable and ethical fashion as I am horrified by the impact of the fashion industry on our environment and how many clothing factories treated [their workers].” You can get the 90s look of your dreams on their website or their Instagram.
Last but not least was Tom-O, a sustainable fashion brand founded by Sarah. She embraces “the old rather than the new” taking worn out or deadstock fabrics and giving them a much-needed makeover. “I love patchworking old into new; and giving new life to what probably would have ended up in landfill! It’s about appreciating and using what we already have.” Think bold, clashing prints worked into sophisticated, wearable designs, still with a touch of avant garde, all the while celebrating the fabrics’ imperfections! You can follow her journey on Instagram or rent her beautiful pieces on the By Rotation app.
There we have it – a run-down of how the Delightful Tack Virtual Fashion Market went down last Friday! Markets like these are a great reminder that you can be fashionable, without contributing to fast fashion and the mass problems that come with it. Not only that, but when you buy from small businesses like these, you’re fuelling someone’s dream!