The nights are creeping in, the weather is turning and things are getting cosier around the house, and that means the winter wish-list is getting longer and longer. The temptation to go on a fast-fashion ordering frenzy is real but you can refresh your wardrobe in a conscious way without having to compromise on style or miss out on trends
Sustainable shopping is easy at Seven Dials, where the seven streets are home to a range of eco-conscious stores, second-hand retailers and B-Corp brands like Le Labo, Ace & Tate, Vivobarefoot and Aesop. Whether you’re after streetwear or soap, you can shop ’til you drop in the neighbourhood knowing that you’re doing your bit for the planet.
Buying vintage and giving old clothes a new life is the ultimate way to shop sustainably, and Seven Dials has you sorted on the secondhand front. Good on Neal Street is stocked exclusively with designer and high street clothes sourced from recycling centres, and this shop contains their biggest selection of vintage so you can rummage for pieces from the likes of Burberry and Issey Miyake.
Goldsmith Vintage, also on Neal Street, has been selling pre-loved fashion since the 90s, and everything in-store is either vintage or part of their own REWORK collection, which are pieces made from materials that would have otherwise gone to waste. The shop also runs the annual Alter Eco competition where students and emerging designers can create garms from deadstock fabrics, encouraging the next generation to focus on sustainability. Vintage Threads is in the rework game too, with their in-house VT Rework collection featuring clothes made from various other vintage pieces being sold alongside retro sportswear and 80s and 90s designer gear.
Swapping old clothes you’ve fallen out of love with for fresh new ones is a really simple way to stay sustainable, not to mention it keeps your wardrobe at a manageable size. Streetwear shop Route One has installed a swap shop rail, so you can bring in your unwanted threads and exchange them for other items hanging there. Activewear brand Dai runs the Dai’Cycle programme, where you can drop off old Dai clothing in exchange for a gift card and they’ll renew the recycled pieces and re-sell them as pre-loved, so nothing goes to waste.
If secondhand really isn’t your bag, you can still shop consciously by buying from brands that build sustainable practices into their businesses. Experimental Perfume Club is carbon positive thanks to the use of glass and paper packaging over plastic, and with discounted fragrance refills you can save money on your fave scent and do good for the environment at the same time. Finisterre is committed to eradicating single-use plastics, so much so that they’ve collaborated with Circular Flow to create the world’s first closed-loop neoprene regeneration scheme, making new wetsuits out of old ones. So, who’s ready to shop?
Seven Dials, London, WC2