I am incredibly proud to partner with H&M for my second year to help launch and celebrate their beautiful and alluring Conscious Exclusive Collection. Fast fashion is a controversial topic and although fashion giants like H&M are at the forefront of seasonal trends, it is good to see the conscious efforts that HM are making to help support and drive sustainable fashion.
“By next year, 2020, the goal at H&M is to use only 100% recycled or other sustainably sourced cotton. H&M is currently at 95 % sustainably sourced cotton of the total materials used.”
I have always bought pieces that I can integrate into my style as it changes over the years. I have H&M pieces that are over 7 years old and although trends have changed, they remain permanent residents in my wardrobe and I enjoy styling them into new season styles. It’s about being smart when I shop and focusing on building a collection of pieces that can reinvent themselves, like my H&M cannery yellow blazer which I bought in LA for $5! I must admit there were a few years when it went into hiatus but I’m glad I kept it as oversized blazers are back in full force.
The aim of the Conscious Exclusive collection is to move H&M’s fashion and sustainability innovation forward. By incorporating innovative sustainable fabrics and challenging what ‘sustainable fashion’ looks like “They should be beautiful, made with sustainability at its core, but also cherished by the wearer to have a long life”.
Each collection sees the team at H&M incorporate new and innovative materials. Last year it was Econyl and Tencel and this year they have debuted a mix of Piñatex, Orange Fiber and BLOOMTM Foam. The spiritual and earthy vibes of this year’s collection is inspired by the wonders of the earth.
“The inspiration focuses around our well-being, the 7 chakras and about appreciating the fantastic wonders around us, in nature, art and medicinal plants, while at its healing powers; both physical and emotional, that connects people to nature. the same time also embracing technology and innovation in the development of more sustainable materials and processes.”
Being the inner city girl I am I hadn’t spent much time in the country. My brother recently moved to a rural property just out of Auckland and I found myself quickly falling in love with everything that defined the country life. Driving down the gravel road, winding down the windows so I can take in the smell of the surrounding paddocks and watching the stars in the stillness of the night, it is a complete contrast to my city life but one that I now appreciate and unexpectedly crave
My friend Nkima was over from London and had reached out to see if I wanted to shoot something special during her travels. I knew immediately where I needed to take her. We drove south, through torrential rain until we reached Ainsley Polo farm. The sun had fought its way through the clouds for us and we spent the evening with my friend Lucy, amongst her beautiful ponies watching the sun set over the hills. This shoot will forever be one of my most memorable
Despite their size and strength, horses don’t intimidate me. That might sound naive of me but I don’t feel any sense of fear in their company. As I sat in their field they slowly approached my sniffing my dress and nudging my side. They were equally intrigued with me as I was with them
Wild Horses by The Rolling Stones started singing in my head as we began to shoot….
No sweeping exit or offstage lines Could make me feel bitter or treat you unkind
Wild horses couldn’t drag me away Wild, wild horses couldn’t drag me away
One morning I woke to message on Instagram from a young Parisian photographer Adem. He was reaching out to compliment my use of colour and the aesthetic of my feed. He mentioned that if I were ever in Paris, he would love to collaborate and show me around the streets of his home town. Three months later we met outside a local cafe in the 7th district, grabbed a coffee and croissant with my darling Sami Downey, and spent the morning shooting amongst his streets and against backdrops that I had only ever dreamed of.
This is one part of my series Around the World with H&M. This shoot features pieces from the Bonjour Paris collection, a limited edition edition collection that celebrates the French Contemporary style and one that has had a huge influence on my own and I know Sami’s.
Always on the hunt for new backdrops, colours and textures to shoot, Tori and I got it in bucket loads in the Victoria on the River precinct of Hamilton. An established local lunch spot for the last 4 years, Banh Mi Caphe has recently experienced a fresh new look in it’s new home right on the river.
Having spent a lot of time in Southeast Asia, I prefer to eat at the local street stalls and food markets. The food is consistently more fresh and flavoursome than what is offered at the restaurants and hotels, because the recipes are refined and perfected through generations. That’s exactly what has the locals hooked on their new inner city eatery, Banh Mi Caphe.
The whole family contribute to the dishes that flow out of their kitchen. The majority of the menu is made up of recipes that Anh (co-owner) learned from her grandmother. The herbs are grown in her mothers own back yard and the baguettes made fresh by her father. The family is truely at the heart of this establishment and it’s success.
Next time you are passing through Hamilton make sure you stop in for lunch or dinner. Open from Tuesday to Saturday Banh Mi Caphe is located at 298 Victoria St, Hamilton.
My favourites were the Lemongrass Tofu and Mushroom Banh Mi, Banh Chuoi Banana Cakes and the Goi Cuon fresh rice paper rolls – but its safe to say the entire menu is ridiculously moorish.
This is the seventh edition of the H&M Conscious Collection and this year they have introduced two new materials to the existing list of sustainable materials used in their collections, recycled silver used for the earrings featured below and ECONYL, a 100% regenerated nylon fibre made from fishnets and other nylon waste, used for the full length white embroidered dress below.
The other items included in this look use materials such as silk, organic linen, cotton, Lyocell made from textile waste or fibre from certain trees and Tencel which is a lightweight fibre made from certified eucalyptus.
The collection brings together powerful femininity (a reoccurring theme in my content this month!) and sustainable fashion. It launches on April 19th.
I often talk about the little wins in my world of blogging. Wins that may seem little to others but are the most valuable wins to me. These are the moments when people take the time to reach out and comment on a piece I have written or an outfit I’ve shared. It’s when someone tells me that I have inspired them to wear colour, try a wide leg pant or to have fun with a statement heel. Or it’s messages from other woman sharing their thoughts on life in their thirties. That’s what makes me get butterflies in my tummy.
It’s incredibly heartening to know that your passion can inspire others. The number of women that inspire me is endless. There is one beauty that I have been following for years now and that’s Miss Gunner. In one of the most cluttered and competitive content platforms – Instagram, it is hard to stand out and inspire someone enough to earn a follow. Yet this darling had me at first scroll, with her effortless style, the way she selects her mix of high brow and accessible fashion and most of all the genuine smile that sings through in every one of her photos. After years of inspo it’s only right that I share a few of my favourite Miss Gunner looks and how they have inspired my own.
We are all guilty of complaining about the rainy winter days or the humid summer nights. But I love living in a country that truly experiences the extremes of all four seasons. They each tell their own colourful story, weaving in and out of each other. With the winter days popping up in spring or that unpredictable autumn weather getting ahead of itself in winter, I embrace the different lifestyles, fashion and moods they each bring with them. From cosy nights spent on the couch watching the rain trickle down the window, to balmy summer nights with all the doors open, enjoying a wine with the girls, the seasons are natures way of refreshing our lives.
… and all at once, summer collapsed into fall – Oscar Wilde
The Cooper Pre Fall 18 collection beautifully represents autumn, mixing soft winter knits with summery bold colours.
I am a dreamer. I enjoy floating off into my imagination. Dreaming of walking the streets of Paris admiring the elegant woman that line the streets full of coffee shops. I dream of frolicking along the beaches of the Amalfi Coast and hiking the hills of Los Angeles. But there are hidden pockets of magic right here at home that bring some dreams into reality. Like here. This is a dream I found in reality at the Hamilton Gardens .
After a few days fossicking around the street stalls of Singapore I found this little orange number in a second hand store for $20. Slightly too big for me with a purple strap I wasn’t taking too, my mum quickly gave it some love and it’s now one of my treasured finds. I paired it with my yellow satin heels from Zara and shot the look within the serene walls of Chijmes, Singapore. This is one of my favourite shoots to date. Thanks Tori for capturing the essence of this magical place perfectly.