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Summer Style Guide: Our Top 6 Picks from Sustainable Fashion Brands

Posted in Fashion by Jon Taylor. Last updated

Summer Style Guide: Our Top 6 Picks from Sustainable Fashion Brands

With color and light filling our days it's the perfect moment to embrace the change in temperature and step-out with ebullience. What better way to embrace the vitality of the season than to reflect this fresh joie de vivre through your outfit. Put those dark neutrals to the back of the rack and bring out the breeze with pastel shades, statement blazers, and flowing dresses. At NDC we want to pinpoint the timeless essentials that will augment your style and help you to shine, all of course, whilst remaining passionately dedicated to sustainability.

But first, we have to be clear. This is not an opinion piece about embracing some passing seasonal trend. We want to help you to be good and look great whilst investing in all of those glorious seasons to come. Instead of going out and spending your budget for the season on trends that won't last you past Autumn, why not take it slow and consider the timeless. Spend your money on items that are on-point for good weather and well-suited whatever the weather.

We delved through our collection and chatted with a couple of our top designers to bring together their recommendations for Spring/Summer 2018. We wanted to get to know them a little better and see what pieces they suggest for the season. We also wanted to learn more about what inspires them and drives them as conscious minded designers.

ANDREA MARTINEZ: Colorful and Feminine Style

Andrea creates fresh and delightfully feminine garments; imbued with a cheerful spirit whilst evoking a timeless nostalgia. Based in Barcelona, through her namesake company she has been creating 100% handmade garments for over 10 years and her passion for timelessness and quality is clearly evident in her affectionately designed collection. Her companies' motto, proudly rings "Ropa original para chicas differences (Original clothing for different girls)" which fits nicely with the vibrancy seen throughout her work.

Andrea told us that she takes inspiration from the quotidian, "I'm always thinking of creating new pieces and getting ideas through watching films, reading magazines and observing stylish people". Andrea's Spring/Summer collection is filled with tasty treats for the season, pieces that provide a sense of playfulness and energy whilst remaining timelessly embedded in the day-to-day. As each of Andrea's collections is produced in a relatively limited quantity, her unique garments are made all that more exclusive; allowing for a greater emphasis to be placed on quality and refinement during the production phase.

Slow Fashion means another way to produce, it is the antithesis of fast fashion… Producing clothing under fairer conditions, in a more transparent way in order to create timeless quality.

Andrea Martinez

Andrea lives by the principles of sustainable fashion, she explained: "it is the only ethical way to continue dressing in a responsible way without harming this world" Her new collection includes the regular suspects for the season; stripes, flowing dresses, ruffles, pleats, and florals but what is it exactly that she thinks will stand out? Here are her recommendations…

"I'm a stripes lover and it's so easy to combine"

Andrea Martinez

"This is a fun and colorful dress with a classic pattern, perfect for the season"

Andrea Martinez

"I like the delicacy and cuteness of this piece, it’s great for brighter days"

Andrea Martinez

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Rakelitoh: Playful and Versitile Fashion Bags

The brainchild of Raquel López Gallardo, Rakelitoh creates meticulously crafted designer handbags from high-quality, ethically sourced materials. The result? Stylish gems that are undeniably unseasonal because they are so undoubtedly timeless. Raquel invests so much of herself and so much inspiration and detail into her designs that she has been able to create collections which have literally never gone out of fashion and most likely never will. These are year-round investment pieces that will add extra leverage to your look during the Spring/Summer season.

Raquel studied at CSDMM (Centro Superior de Diseño de Moda de Madrid) and went on to train at the prestigious Madrid based fashion house LOEWE before starting Rakelitoh back in 1997. She has pieces available in her collection which have been in demand for the last 15 years! How does she achieve this longevity and create pieces which are both timelessly relevant and eternally stylish? We spoke to her to find out;

Like Andrea, Raquel told us of the importance she places on taking inspiration from her surroundings, "inspiration is part of a conscious and subconscious thought process which occurs continuously - life in its entirety". Raquel takes cues from "the alluring nature of the Mediterranean landscape and from the spontaneous joy of other people", these abstracts help her to form "ideas which propose ways to design objects with greater functionality and beauty".

Raquel trusts in design and sees it as "a style-of-thought, and a way of understanding the world", this she says is why she "believes honesty with oneself is so necessary". It is this integration of personal integrity and respect for the world around her which is deeply forged into her quality designs. A synthesis which results in timelessness.

When I design a bag, I design a piece which doesn't just deal with temporary circumstances. We try to create something that by its function and form is consistent over time.

Raquel López Gallardo

Raquel says that Slow fashion has been central to Rakelitoh from the very start, "we believe in the timelessness of garments and accessories. I consider such practice a triumph for both creator and customer; When you find a quality piece a kind of reconciliation emerges, it allows you to stop and observe, this being an object which will accompany you faithfully over a longer period of time because it bears the stamp of craftsmanship and is made with affection and respect".

So what does Raquel recommend for this current moment? What are the statement pieces to add to your wardrobe with Spring/Summer in mind?

"This is a versatile and functional piece: for all times of day. The outer pocket provides identity and personality and it has an interior compartment for tiny trinkets."

Raquel López Gallardo

"This is one of our most emblematic bags. We designed the original model many years ago and it was somewhat smaller. It was designed for times of the day when you only needed to carry a few things. Our customers started to use it throughout the day so finally we decided to re-design it; to make it a little larger without losing the essence."

Raquel López Gallardo

"This is a piece that has stayed popular over time and is suitable for all occasions. Really, it’s the synthesis of everything we want to put into our designs; value and versatility are paramount."

Raquel López Gallardo

Tweet About Rakelitoh

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