Natural and organic apparel becoming more fashionable, accessible
June 25, 2014
You understand the importance of putting "real" foods into your body, but what about putting "real" clothes onto your body? Incorporating natural fabrics into your wardrobe doesn't mean limiting yourself to beige muumuus that resemble potato sacks at best. Apparel created using natural and organic materials is becoming more fashionable and more accessible. Designers are creating fashion-forward pieces that are flattering, versatile and on-trend. We've chosen some of our favorite pieces crafted from natural materials to round out your summer wardrobe.
Sea Change Pants, Horny Toad ($82)
More than a genus of beautiful flowering trees and shrubs, eucalyptus is valued for being a fast-growing source of wood, producer of fragrant oil and a natural insecticide. Horny Toad, an eco-conscious manufacturer of men and women's clothing, has created a line of clothing that is created from eucalyptus trees.
The woman's Sea Change pant is part of the Tencel line, a blend of eucalyptus and stretch polyester that's quick-drying, soft and durable. We love the versatility of these pants; the roll-up button tabs allow you to wear them as full-length pants or capris, helping you justify the $82 price tag. The moisture-wicking fabric is perfect for an afternoon hike, providing UPF 45 protection, and stylish enough to wear to happy hour with your gal pals.
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Iconic Wrap, Lululemon ($88)
If selling seashells by the seashore isn't on your agenda this summer, then you can channel your inner mermaid and wrap yourself in seaweed — or fabric created from seaweed, at least. SEACELL, a yarn derived from seaweed, is blended with cotton and spandex to create Vitasea, a fabric now being offered by Lululemon.
The Iconic Wrap is crafted from this soft and cozy fabric that's lightweight and breathable, perfect for cool summer evenings. It can be worn long and open in the front or flipped upside down for a cropped fit. Pull it higher for a hooded look. We're suckers for anything with thumbholes, and the snug fit on the shoulders keeps the piece looking feminine, not sloppy. What's our only complaint? It's only available in heather gray and heather black — more colors, please, Lulu!
Men's Bodega Hemp, Freewaters ($65)
Women's Georgia Hemp, Freewaters ($58)
Hemp clothing has been popular for decades, and with good reason. It's a weed that grows abundantly in temperate climates without much need of anything, including pesticides. It can be grown with natural ingredients: compost, animal manure and available rainfall. Industrial hemp farming requires 90 percent less water than cotton and actually pulls carbon out of the air, which aids in reversing global warming.
The strength of the fibers in hemp makes it one of the most durable and insulating of natural materials, perfect for footwear. Freewaters, a company committed to making a positive difference in the world, offers a line of hemp canvas shoes for men and women. The Men's Bodega Hemp shoe is classic and effortlessly cool.
Composed of a hemp canvas upper, reinforced toe bumper and frayed edge detailing, the pillow insole is supportive and comfortable. The Women's Georgia Hemp shoe is minimal and natural in all the right ways. The hemp canvas upper with subtle button detailing and braided jute is the perfect shoe to throw on before a trip to the farmers market or weekend brunch. Both shoes are completely vegan, free of animal materials or byproducts. If completely comfortable and stylish shoes aren't enough to entice you to check out Freewaters, they donate 1 percent of gross sales to fund water projects in Africa.
Women's Island Hemp Crossover Dress, Patagonia ($89)
Men's Migration Hemp Hoody, Patagonia ($129)
Hemp fabric drapes like linen, creating flattering and flowing silhouettes such as the Women's Island Hemp Crossover Dress from Patagonia. This light and airy dress created from a hemp and organic cotton blend is perfect for hot afternoons spent at Dillon Reservoir. The empire waist makes it flattering for all figures, and the vibrant Catalan Coral color is fresh and summery. Or choose the Leaden Blue or Classic Navy with pinstripes.
For the men in your family, we dig the Migration Hemp Hoody from Patagonia. The hemp and organic cotton blend keeps this jacket light enough for summer's warmer weather. Don't let the rugged good looks and durability of hemp fool you; it's cuddly soft on the inside. Fabric drawstrings and a zipper garage keep the top of the zipper from scratching your neck. The Glass Blue color has an almost denim-like look, while the Ash Tan is more of a natural look.