Green Winter Fashions

by on September 15th, 2010
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Green is a good bet for winter fashions – and not just as a color. Sustainable clothing is as friendly to the earth as it is to your closet, and it’s easier than you might think to do an earth-friendly fashion makeover.

If you’d like to bring a little more green into your wardrobe, here are a few ideas that you can try:

Natural Fibers

Look for sweaters, scarves and other knit clothing made from organic and sustainably-farmed wool and cotton. These fabrics and yarns are healthy for the environment and can also keep you warm and toasty on those cold winter days. Also look for sustainably-raised silk long underwear. It’s amazingly thin, and it will keep you warm under any kind of clothes. For organic fashions, check out WoolWorks, Gaiam, and Green Mountain Organics.

Secondhand Coats and Sweaters

Secondhand clothes are sustainable, smart and affordable. Winter clothes, especially sweaters and coats, can be especially good buys in secondhand stores. Look for quality clothes that have little or no wear, and wash or dry clean them before donning them and heading out into the cold.

Winter Clothes Swaps

Clothes swaps are gaining momentum as ways to share clothing, socialize with friends and be kind to the earth. Organize them with friends or other families; they work especially well with children’s clothes, since children have barely worn their sweaters and coats before they’ve outgrown them. These swaps can be informal and local, or you can go through services like Clothing Swap or

Recycled Materials

Fleece clothes, gloves, coats, sweaters and other apparel made from recycled material are all the rage, and it’s worth checking out some of these creative fashions. Look at fleece tops made from recycled plastic, for instance, at Clothes Made From Scrap and Patagonia.

Sustainably-made Clothes

Look for clothes that are made in the U.S. or that highlight that they’re made according to good labor practices. Too many clothes are made in sweatshops around the world, and the more we can vote with our wallets against such practices, the better. And if you’re really ambitious, dig out the old sewing machine or knitting needles and make your own coats, sweaters and scarves.

Wear Layers Indoors

The more layers you wear, the lower you can set your heat. It’s as simple as that. Plus, layers are fashionable, fun and always in style.

Non-Leather Shoes

It used to be that the only leather shoes available looked like the cheap plastic imitations they were. Now, however, non-leather boots and other winter shoes are just as lovely as their “real” counterparts. Ahimsa Footwear, Charmone Shoes and many other companies sell vegan shoes. For a complete list of animal-friendly clothing, check out PETA’s list of vegan companies.

Ditch the Fur

With all the faux fur options, there’s no reason to bundle up with real fur, which is both cruel to animals and simply not a sustainable product. Instead, check out coats and other faux fur products at companies like Copenhagen Artificial Fur and Genuine Fake.

With these tips, you’ll be able to stay warm and fight global warming. And that makes everyone, including the earth, happy.

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