Eco-friendly and Zero Waste School Supplies
30 Eco Friendly & Zero Waste School Supplies

Eco Friendly & Zero Waste School Supplies

Welcome back to the blog everyone! Today we are super excited to have a guest contributor by the name of Alexandria Winner (from Ecoist) to share her advice on eco-friendly & zero waste school supplies. My school days may be over, but I need all the help I can get with my two children heading off to school in the near future! I love the thought of carefully choosing each and every school supply piece, with not only my children in mind, but with mother earth and the future state of our world in mind.

Be part of the solution, not part of the pollution

Eco Friendly & Zero Waste School Supplies

 

The typical American school uses about 250,000 pieces of paper per year.

This equates to over 35 Billion sheets of paper JUST in the K-12 schools in the United States.

When you add in the school supplies that the children and teens are bringing into their classrooms, these numbers can easily be multiplied by well over 56 million – which is the number of children and teenagers in school this year according to the National Centre for Education Statistics. And this is “just” paper that we are talking about here, folks. Don’t even get me started on the plastic situation. The numbers are staggering and changes need to be made.

If you are looking to fill those school backpacks with responsible, well-made, eco-friendly, and zero waste items, then you have come to the right place!

 

psst….Short on Time?

Here are the quick links for our list of Eco Friendly & Zero Waste School Supplies:

 

Eco-Friendly and Zero Waste School Supplies: Pens & Pencils

eco-friendly & zero waste school supplies

Before ordering a bunch of pens and pencils for school, take a look around your house in your drawers and pen cups to see if you have a bunch of old ones lying around. Who doesn’t, right?! Use those first.

Once those are all used up, then choose one of the many eco-friendly options:

  • OHTO/JPT Pencil/Ball Pen
    • Natural Wood Pencil Ball Pen – 1.0mm
  • OHTO/JPT Stainless Steel & Ceramic Roller Ball Pen
    • Stainless steel pen with a ceramic roller ball, 0.5mm
  • Sprout World Plantable Pencils
    • The plantable Sprout pencils can grow into plants like luscious flowers, fragrant herbs and fresh vegetables once they’re too short to use.
  • Recycled Newspaper Pencils
    • These exquisite pencils are made from old newspapers and not from cut trees. Newspaper is tightly rolled over graphite. The high-quality graphite is strong and does not break when sharpening. A regular sharpener can be used with these pencils. It’s cool to see shavings of newspaper when sharpening!

The Accessories for your Pens & Pencils

 

Eco-Friendly and Zero Waste School Supplies: Crayons & Markers

Eco-Friendly & Zero Waste School Supplies-4

Whether you are shopping for the first days of kindergarten or high school, everyone is going to need some color in their lives!

Here is our list of eco-friendly crayons & markers!

  • Vegan & Toxic Free Butterfly Crayons
    • These beautiful butterflies are the larger of our crayon shapes, but still perfectly sized and textured for little hands. Handmade in the UK from Soy wax, carnauba wax, cocoa butter and coloured with natural occurring earth pigments they are suitable for veggies and vegans too (Crayola and other many other crayons contain beef tallow).
  • Stabilo Woody 3-in-1 Crayons
      • The STABILO woody 3 in 1 is perfect for kids to draw and paint and ideal for parents too – it washes off windows and is suitable for many surfaces besides just paper or cardboard.
  • Eco-Friendly Recycled Permanent Markers
    • The tubes of these earth-friendly permanent markers are made with recycled paper, reducing the use of plastic by 60%. The markers feature polyester fiber tips that are filled with non-toxic, alcohol-based ink and contain NO Xylene, Toluene, or other VOCs.
  • Eco Text Marker Highlighter
    • The stock consists mainly of the renewable raw material sugarcane. The bright color is water-based, solvent-free and odorless.
  • Eco White Board Markers
    • Ethanol-based ink, free from aromatic or chlorinated solvents. Marker body made from Recycled Paper & wax instead of aluminium or plastic.

 

Eco-Friendly and Zero Waste School Supplies: All the Paper

eco-friendly & zero waste school supplies

Even with the digital world that we live in, paper use in schools is still quite high, especially for the little ones. Choosing 100% recycled paper is a wonderful way to help support Mother Nature while also teaching valuable lessons to our children. Each time they see the recycled paper stamp, you will have left a little stamp of inspiration for their future choices.

Here is our list of eco-friendly paper products!

  • A5 Handcrafted Stapled Recycled Notebooks
    • The covers are made from reclaimed and recycled materials that would otherwise be sent to landfill. Since each book is personalised, you can pick what type of material your cover can be made from cardboard to PVC.
  • PrintWorks 100% Recycled Copy Paper
    • 100 percent post-consumer recycled printer and copier paper for everyday use at an affordable price
    • Made in the USA from recycled food and beverage containers and other paper-based printed materials
  • Natural & Recycled Drawing Paper
    • Natural Recycled 9″ x 12″ Drawing Paper – 500 Sheets. Crayons, pencils, markers and paints show up brilliantly on this natural unbleached paper.
  • 2-pocket Notebooks by Naked Binder
    • These Folders are sustainable eco-friendly folders made from 100% recycled, 100% post-consumer waste 22-pt. chipboard.
  • 3-Ring Binder by Naked Binder
    • EXTREMELY DURABLE. Made with one solid piece of heavy-duty binders board. The hinge has been tested (opened and closed) 250,000 times and it did not fall apart!
  • Handcrafted A5 Weekly Planner
    • cream 100 % recycled paper (Clairfontaine)
    • 80 gsm plain recycled boards with printed monstera leaves
  • Naked Binder 3-Ring Tab Dividers
    • 100% post-consumer fiber, and FSC certified Neenah Conservation Paper. 100% recyclable.
  • Yamama Memo Pads
    • Four Side Colored Memo Pad.  180 sheets
  • Yamama Metallic Sticky Notes
    • Metallic Sticky Notes. 33 sheets

 

Eco-Friendly and Zero Waste School Supplies: Accessories

eco-friendly & zero waste school supplies

All those little accessories add up, don’t they? I gotta tell ya, I have no idea where all those paper clips, staplers, staples, scissors, etc ended up. Well….I think I do…they all ended up in the trash. So, let’s try our best to fix that!

Here is our list of eco-friendly accessories

  • Yamama Bamboo Paper Clips
    • These innovative bamboo paper clips project positive impressions for all of your presentations. And they are beyond eco-friendly, they’re 100% work-friendly!
  • Onyx & Green Scissors
    • These 5″/127 mm scissors have stainless steel blades and a rounded tip. The handles are made from corn plastic.
  • Staple Free Stapler
    • Easy to shred and recycle papers without the worry of staples getting jammed. Without staples just drop in the shredder or recycle bin. It’s environmentally safe.
  • Midori Storage Boxes
    • 11″x7″x5″ ht.  100% Recycled Paper Storage Container
  • Cork Desk Organizer
    • This desk organizer is a simple zero waste product.  It is made of cork and designed to hold cell phones, pens and note pads.
  • Vegan Recycled Felt MacBook Sleeve
    • The colorful felt is made of multi-color fabric. The waste textiles have been cut into tiny pieces and then transformed into a new fabric – colorful felt from recycled textiles.
    • The felt made of vegan fabric is non toxic, health and environmentally friendly (European Union REACH Certificate of Compliance).
  • Cell Phone Covers by Pela Case
    • COMPOSTABLE PHONE CASE: Pela cases are made of a combination of flax straw ‘waste’, plant-based biopolymers and contain organic ingredients that meet rigorous standards for compostability in municipal and industrial composting facilities.

 

Eco-Friendly and Zero Waste School Supplies: Backpacks

eco-friendly & zero waste school supplies

What better way to finish off the school supplies guide than with the amazing bags to hold all your goodies?! Here are a few of our favorite environmentally friendly backpack options. Just remember, there is nothing more sustainable than what you already own. If you already have a backpack, please use it!

Here is our list of eco-friendly backpacks

  • TerraThread Backpacks $
    • The Earth Backpacks are made using heavy-duty 14 oz organic cotton canvas. These fairtrade backpacks are spacious and feature one large exterior pocket, one small interior pocket, and a laptop compartment. The organic backpacks can be used for school, outdoor activities, traveling, and more!
      Each purchase of this backpack contributes 20 MEALS to children, families, and seniors in need in the United States through Feeding America.

      • Made with 100% Organic and Fairtrade Cotton
      • Processed and Manufactured per Global Organic Textile Standards (GOTS)
      • Color dyed using low impact GOTS Certified Dyes
      • Manufactured at a Fair Trade Certified Factory
      • Hang Tags are made using recycled kraft paper
  • United By Blue Backpacks $$
    • 100% recycled polyester with water repellent finish
    • Padded laptop sleeve accommodates up to 17″ laptop
    • Interior zippered pocket and open pockets
    • Exterior flap pocket with magnetic closure, zipper pockets and side pocket
    • Adjustable, padded shoulder straps, haul strap and cross sternum strap
    • Water bottle sleeve fits bottles with a diameter up to 3.75″
    • Equipped with a Lifetime Guarantee
  • Kathmandu Backpacks $$$ (Children to Adult Options)
    • When it’s time for your kid’s first pack or to upgrade their current one, the Cotinga Kids’ Pack will be a welcome surprise. With an ergonomic harness and sizing to specifically fit kids, your growing child won’t want to remove it. There’s also a spacious front area for lunches – because books and bananas don’t mix. Made with 15 recycled plastic bottles.
    • Outer fabric contains REPREVE™ – polyester created from recycled plastic bottles
    • kidsFIT technology – an ergonomic harness with adjustable shoulder straps
    • Elasticated sleeve in the main compartment – for your kid’s books or portable device
    • Grab handle and reflective detail for safety

 

Use what you already have!

After all of our research and digging, I was so shocked by just how many companies are in support of sustainable school supplies. This is such great news!

Like we always say here at WonderMamas, please use what you already have first. Even if you have a drawer full of plastic supplies, I beg you to use those first before buying anything new. If you are on a tight budget and cannot afford the pieces listed above, please check out your local second hand stores, second hand online shops, or even second hand swaps. Join facebook groups in your area for second hand school supplies, yes they exist!

In the end, being a conscious consumer is so much more than buying the latest and greatest eco products. The first step is to evaluate what you got, extend its life, and then replace when necessary. I am so honoured that you have chosen us to help you on this journey. Have a beautiful school year!

 

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What A Zero Waste Home Actually Looks Like

 

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Nutrition Guide and Resources for a Healthy Vegan Pregnancy

A vegan diet that recognizes all essential nutrients can do the mother and baby a world of good.

Welcome, Mamas!

Today we are jumping right into how to have a healthy and happy vegan pregnancy. If you are new to the Vegan diet, having a vegan pregnancy may seem a bit overwhelming, but to be quite frank with you, it is just as easy as any other pregnancy! We just have to make sure that we are reaching our nutritional goals while also listening to our bodies.

Pregnancy is such a miracle.

As women, we have the amazing opportunity to grow a little human (or humans!) inside of our womb and care for them through proper nutrition, lots of rest, stress-relieving activities such as meditation or reading, heart-healthy activities such as walking and pregnancy safe workouts, and belly rubs while gently singing your favorite songs (got to start them young on good music, am I right?!).

This miracle requires a lot from our bodies. Pregnancy is a time where our bodies hit their highest metabolic and nutritional demands. We need to be aware of what we are eating and how to reach our nutritional demands without going bonkers. Vegan and non-vegans alike go through this stressful period of “Am I doing enough!?” and I have to tell you….if you care enough to read and research, I am positive that you are doing enough.

This guide is not a complete guide for every woman.

We are all different and we all require a bit more of this and a bit more of that. It is crucial to get your bloodwork done as soon as possible to see where you need to pick up the pace or where you are good to go. Some key nutritional values that are crucial in pregnancy are Folic Acid, Iron, Calcium, Vitamin D, DHA, and Iodine. 

To begin our guide, we will chat more about these and how you can reach your goal without any animal products!

We will then move onto Vegan Specific needs, helpful tips and resources, and a few of my favorite books.

Nutrition Guide and Resources for a Healthy Vegan Pregnancy

Nutrition Guide and Resources for a Healthy Vegan Pregnancy

 

A Quick Daily Checklist for Pregnancy

Looking for an easy-to-follow checklist to help meet your daily nutritional requirements? Follow these 5 steps!

Eat at least 5 servings a day of nuts, beans, tempeh, legumes, fortified milk, veggie meats or nut/seed butter.

Eat a wide and colorful variety of fruits and vegetables. Green leafy vegetables, those with high vitamin C, and dark vegetables/fruits are great for pregnancy!

If possible, opt for whole grains. Select healthy fat sources like avocados, nuts, nut/seed butter, seeds, coconut butter, and the like.

Eat calcium-rich foods every single day: aim for 5-6 servings.

Use a trusted vegan supplement (we list our recommendations at the end) to meet your daily nutritional needs.

Key Nutritional Values in Pregnancy


 

Folic Acid: 600 mg/daily

This vitamin is VERY easy for most vegans and vegetarians to come by without the need for supplementation (although this is in all pre-natal vitamins!). Folic acid is found in an array of vegetables, so as long as you are consuming your daily required intake, you should be fine! A deficiency in folic acid is linked to neural tube defects. Some of the best sources of folic acid are orange juice, leafy greens, beans/lentils, whole grains, and wheat flour.

 

Iron: 27mg/daily

Pregnant women, vegan and non-vegan alike, have the highest need for Iron due to the increased blood volume, development of the fetus, and possible blood loss in delivery. A great thing to note: Our bodies are iron machines during pregnancy and if you have an iron deficiency from any of the above reasons, maternal iron stores will usually meet the baby’s needs so that they are not born with iron-deficiency unless the mother is severely anemic.

One of my favorite ways to reach my iron levels is to use blackstrap molasses in my daily intake. I use 1 tsp in tea, add it to cookies, smoothies, and I also blend it into my dressings! This has been a wonderful and delicious way to boost my iron levels. The best food sources of iron are spinach, leafy greens, potatoes, dried fruits, beans, tofu, peas, seeds, nuts, soy milk, and fortified foods. It is highly recommended to consume a source of Vitamin C with the iron-rich foods for best absorption

Bloodwork is crucial to find out where your iron levels are and how you should go about to boost or regulate them.

This blogger has some of my favourite iron rich meals that are delicious for any point in life: The Viet Vegan

Calcium: 1000mg/daily

 

Calcium is quite easy to come by if you eat the right foods. Some great vegan calcium-rich foods are fortified milks, fresh fruit, juice, cereals, fortified tofu, beans, sesame seeds, nuts, and figs. One of the key things to note with calcium is to NOT overdo it. It is extremely easy for us to get too much calcium. The limit for daily intake should be no more than 2,500 mg per day. If taking a supplement, opt for one that has below 400 mg because you will reach your daily intake with just one bowl of cereal.

 

Vitamin D: 10-40 micrograms/daily

The interesting thing about Vitamin D is that the recommended dose is just 5 micrograms per day but many researchers argue that it is set too low. So for this, we will set it at 10-40 (50 is the upper limit which is safe) per day. Vitamin D is a vitamin that is not so easy to find for both vegans and non-vegans – it is not found in most foods!

Vitamin D can be made from exposure to the sun, and that may be easy for some of us but may pregnant women are stuck at work or spend most of their time indoors. The use of sunscreen also inhibits Vitamin D (p.s. if you ARE using sunscreen, please use something safe like badger balm).

One of the most popular ways that vegans and non-vegans reach their vitamin D goals is to take a supplement of 5-10 micrograms daily. You can also reach for Vitamin D fortified foods such as soy milk, cereals, orange juice, and bars.

Note: Vitamin D3 is derived from animal sources. Vegans have the D2 form. D2 is not as well absorbed as the D3 form, so vegans should strive for the higher end of the recommended range (10-40 micrograms)

Nutrition Guide and Resources for a Healthy Vegan Pregnancy

Nutrition Guide and Resources for a Healthy Vegan Pregnancy

DHA & Omega-3 Fatty Acids

While Omega-3’s can be found in super easy to find vegan foods, DHA will have to come from a supplement that is derived from algae. 200-300 milligrams/daily of DHA is recommended to reduce the risk of premature birth and healthy brain development.

As for Omega-3’s, we can easily reach our daily intake needs by incorporating flax meal, walnuts, and chia seeds into our diet. You can also opt for flaxseed, walnut, canola, or hempseed oils. Just 1 tbsp of seeds or a small handful of walnuts will get you to your daily recommended intake.

Iodine: 150mcg/daily

Many women around the world do not get enough of their daily recommended iodine intake. It is crucial to reach your daily intake for the health of your baby. The best way to do this is to use a supplement, such as a prenatal vitamin. Be sure that your supplement has at least 150mcg of iodine.

You can also opt to use a specific supplement. Iodized salt can be an easy addition to the daily diet to boost your iodine count. Sea vegetables are a rich source of iodine but their levels are a bit extreme; it’s best to stay within the recommended daily amount.

 

Zinc

This is another nutrient that many women, vegan and non-vegan alike, are deficient in. The daily required amount jumps from 8 to 11 milligrams per day in pregnancy.

Great sources of zinc include legumes, whole grains, and nuts. Check that your prenatal vitamin provides 15 milligrams of zinc.

Vitamin B12: 2.6 micrograms/daily

If you have been vegan for more than a day, I am sure that you have heard about vitamin B12 haha. Do not worry, we can easily reach our daily requirement on a vegan diet. Vitamin b12 plays a crucial role in the development of your baby’s nervous system. Our body stores vitamin b12 for our own use but this stored b12 has not been shown to be readily available to the fetus. We must eat b12 rich foods and/or take a b12 supplement to reach our baby’s needs.

Pregnany women should have a goal of 2.6 micrograms per day. We can easily find B12 in fortified foods such as breakfast cereals, non-dairy milk, bars, meat substitutes, and Nutritional yeast. Many use fortified foods and a B12 supplement together.

Note: Tempeh, sprouted beans, sea vegetables, and algae contain b12 analogs with block the absorption of b12. Do not confuse these foods with B12 rich foods.

Protein: 60-85 grams/daily

Vegans have NO problems reaching their daily protein intake if they have a healthy, well-balanced diet. There are just so many options, it’s quite silly to even make this suggestion! When it comes to pregnancy however, our protein needs increase because we must not only maintain our own body, but also the developing muscles, bones, and organs of our children.

The protein recommendation for pregnant women is between 60-85 grams/daily. The amount does vary based on your weight. For an exact number, seek out a plant-based nutritionist to run the numbers.

Some easy ways to incorporate protein into your vegan diet is to add beans, tofu, tempeh, fortified milk, nuts, seeds, nut butter, veggie meats and even vegan protein powder to your diet. I absolutely love to add nut butter to my daily smoothies to get a nice boost in the morning.

Some easy to make protein-packed meals: Buddha bowls, lentil soup, smoothies, apples and nut butter, trail mix, and tofu/chickpea curry.

 

Additional Tips for Pregnancy

 

Current BMI: Women whose BMI is underweight or overweight during conception are at a higher risk for pregnancy complications such as gestational diabetes, having a very large/small infant, and having a premature baby. You can get an idea of your BMI via this calculator. I would like to note one thing; if you are very muscular, your BMI will be way off. For a more accurate answer, please use these ways to test.

Weight Gain: The average weight gain over the course of 9 months is around 25-35 pounds. For underweight women, the average is 28-40 pounds. For overweight women, 15-25 pounds. For multiple births, it can range between 35-55 pounds (lucky me haha!). These numbers are just basic guidelines and your continuous doctor checkups will keep you on track. If you follow a healthy diet and eat for your body (and your baby’s) needs, you will be fine. The first trimester will usually see a weight gain of maybe 5 pounds or even weight loss if severe nausea is happening.

What to Avoid: No alcohol. No drugs. No raw sprouts. No unpasteurized juices.

Water Intake: Drink your water! Drink up, drink up. Try infused waters, non-decaffeinated teas, fresh juices, or even whole fruit with high H20 content.  If you are pregnant in hotter months, please drink more than usual. Dehydration can lead to early labor because the hormones that stimulate contractions will be in high concentrations in a body that is not hydrated.

Cravings: Although there are times that cravings can trigger a deficiency, usually they are just telling you to go to sleep, get more comfortable, or relieve some stress. Cravings are not harmful unless they are really wreaking havoc on your diet. If you ever crave non-food like dirt or clay, check on your iron and zinc levels.

Having Multiples? Congratulations and welcome to the club! As a mom carrying more than one baby, you will need to eat more, gain more weight, drink more water and intake more vitamins and minerals. It is recommended to find an expert in nutrition to help you figure out your meal plan for this pregnancy: get ready to devour a lot!

 

Recommended Prenatal Vitamins

Click on the photos or titles to learn more

Mama Am/Pm Prenatal Vitamins

My Kind Organics Prenatal Vitamins

No Fish, No Fish Vegan Prenatal DHA

 

Helpful Resources + Cookbooks

Click on the photo or title to learn more

 

The Mama Natural Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth

Your Complete Vegan Pregnancy: Your All-in-One Guide

Plant-Powered Families: Over 100 Kid-Tested Vegan Recipes

 

Helpful Online Resources:

 

If you enjoyed this Nutrition Guide and Resources for a Healthy Vegan Pregnancy, check these other posts out!

 

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maternity clothes
10 Sustainable and Ethical Maternity Brands for New Mamas (For Pregnancy, Post-Birth, and Beyond!)

Trusted Maternity Brands

This blog post took me quite a long time to write for several reasons. First off, I wanted to find sustainable and ethical maternity clothing made all over the world to ensure that each and every Mama was taken care of. Second, I wanted to ensure that I found clothes that were not just made fairly and with the best fabrics, but that these clothes could be used for much longer than just for pregnancy and the 4th trimester. Lastly, I searched far and wide for NON-maternity brands that could work for Maternity clothing/Breastfeeding and have been tried, tested, and loved by experienced mothers.

Phew! So, without further ado, here it is: 10 Sustainable and Ethical Maternity Brands for New Mamas!

Feel free to share this post with any new/experienced mothers who are looking for a more eco-friendly closet:)

10 Sustainable & Ethical Maternity Brands

Sustainable and Ethical Maternity Brands that we love!

 

1. Dwell And Slumber (U.S.A.)

10 Sustainable & Ethical Maternity Brands
Image courtesy of Dwell and Slumber.

Talk about one GORGEOUS set of Mama and Babywear. Some featured items that I would recommend are the cocoon and caftan dresses. The dresses are bump-friendly and nursing friendly! These can be used as traditional dresses, pajamas, maternity wear, 4th-trimester wear, AND even when the kids are grown up and you just want to be comfortable and uber stylish. Dwell and Slumber also has beautiful baby gowns, hats and swaddle blankets that are super soft and perfect for little ones.

All of the products are made in the U.S.A. and ethical in production.

Shop Their Products

2. Boob Design (Sweden – Ships Worldwide)

10 Sustainable & Ethical Maternity Brands

Image courtesy of Boob Design.

 

Absolutely amazing nursing bras, wrap dresses, nightwear, swimwear, and so much more. Boob Design is an extremely high quality and sustainable brand that I could not recommend enough. They are sustainable from beginning to end and are so transparent with how their products are made. They are a certified GOTS certified company; GOTS certification means that all parts, from cotton cultivation to staining, printing, and labels are approved according to GOT’s criteria. The standard ensures the traceability of the entire supply chain. Furthermore, they are also certified STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX®. which certifies that the raw material and all components of our garments are tested for substances that are illegal and hazardous to people’s health.

THIS is the kind of company that we want to support!

Highly Recommend The Once on Never Off Again Leggings!

Shop Their Products

 

3. Storq (U.S.A. Ships to Canada)

Three-piece maternity set

Image courtesy of Storq.

Super simple and classic; just what we love here at WonderMamas. I love this brand so much for how creative they are in making maternity wear work for all areas of motherhood. The three-piece lounge set (for ALL trimesters, 1-4) with the cutest tag line: “A very classy set of PJs to remind you that you are still people even if you are housebound, boobs-out 90% of the time.” haha, I love it! They also have amazing leggings and the must-have t-shirt dress that every new mom needs (or, let’s be honest, every woman needs!).

A little bit about Storq to make you a lifetime buyer for sure: “We don’t make a new collection every few months. In fact, we only make products one at a time, because we feel strongly that they should exist. We stay away from trends, keeping the focus on styles that are classic and seasonless, so anyone can shop year-round. Clothing is designed to mix effortlessly with your pre-pregnancy wardrobe and can often be worn or used during pregnancy, nursing and postpartum.”

Recommended: The three-piece lounge set or the basics bundle!

Shop Their Products

 

4. Indigo Luna (Australia – Ships Worldwide)

Maternity Bra

Image courtesy of Indigo Luna.

Indigo Luna has been one of my all-time favorite sustainable brands since I found out about them about 18 months ago. Every piece is so gorgeous and earthy. I was thrilled to find out that their Boxy Crop Bras were a HUGE hit amongst breastfeeding mums! I actually ordered two and I am awaiting their arrival ( I am so excited!) so I will keep you all updated!

Indigo Luna cares so much about their workers in Bali. Everything is handmade under fair trade conditions and the factory is run by women (which is quite unusual in Indonesia!). Not only are the workers well taken care of, but your clothes and the environment are too! The dyes are made from plant sources that they grow themselves; Mango, Indigo and Secang Wood. The fibers used are natural and very sustainable; organic bamboo and Tencel. I just cannot recommend this company enough.

Recommended: The boxy crop and Layla Flares (This will be great for 1st, 2nd and 4th trimester)

Shop Their Products

 

 

5. Jojo Mama Bébè (UK – Ships Worldwide)

Sustainable Maternity Clothes

Jojo Maman Bébé is a certified B-corporation and has a TON of options for Mamas and little ones. This website is very comfortable for those who are used to bigger companies – there is a lot to see here! Think of this as a one-stop-shop for any eco-conscious mothers (including killer sales!)

Recommended: Pregnancy Essentials

Shop Their Products

 

6. Hatch (U.S.A. – Ships Worldwide)

Sustainable Maternity clothing

Image courtesy of Hatch.

If you are looking to splurge a bit while also supporting a fantastic company, then Hatch is right up your alley! The clothes that they have for pregnancy are just beyond perfect. I spent WAY too long digging through their website and “oohing” and “ahhing” at all the selections! Hatch features items for every stage of pregnancy and beyond. I would personally wear any one of their items right now!

Hatch partners with nonprofit organizations that support mothers all over the world. I am also super excited to tell you that they offer a line of vegan beauty products safe for mamas!

Recommended: The Nadine Sweater and the hatch layers set. 

Shop Their Products

 

7. Mothers En Vogue (Singapore – Ships Worldwide)

Sustainable Maternity Clothes

Image courtesy of Mothers En Vogue.

 

I am ALL about the fibers with Mothers En Vogue! Organic cotton and linen are two of my top favorite fabrics for every season and I am in love with the options from this lovely shop. They are very simple and straight forward with their sustainable approach:

“It must also be constructed with natural fabrication (think cotton, linen, bamboo – naturally derived yarns) and even better if ecologically derived. The rationale behind such demands is simple – nursing mothers and babies benefit most from wearing natural textiles as these are most comfortable and breathe-able and help reduce incidences of skin sensitivities or reactions.”

Recommended: The Must-Have List and Bundle Deals

Shop Their Products

Second-Hand Options!

 

8. ThredUp (U.S.A.)

Second-hand maternity clothing? Heck yes, Mama! Honestly, if I lived in the U.S., I would use this company and all the other second-hand shops near to my home to stock up on maternity wear. I am such a second-hand lover!

Recommended: Simply use the search function for maternity!

Shop Their Products

 

9. OxFam Online Shop (U.K.)

Fight fast fashion with Oxfam! Whether choosing second hand or new products; purchasing from this company is always a great idea.

“We won’t live with poverty. Find a bargain or a unique treasure in Oxfam’s Online Shop and join thousands of supporters who help us to fight poverty and injustice around the world. Choose from 100,000+ donated and new products or buy a loved one a fun and quirky charity gift from Oxfam Unwrapped. The proceeds will go towards our life-changing work. “

Recommended: Simply use the search function for maternity!

Shop Their Products

10. Serendipity Maternity Boutique (Australia)

 

Where to find pre-loved, used and second hand maternity clothes in Australia. This amazing company has been around for 14+ years and is the number one second hand maternity shop in all of Australia. That is such a great success!!

Recommended: EVERYTHING!

Shop Their Products

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Dynur Children's Clothing
Sustainable Shopping for Children’s Clothes: A Full Guide!

A Full Guide to Sustainable Shopping for Children’s Clothes

For the past 365 days, our followers and friends have witnessed our family go through the beautiful transition to a sustainable, mindful and minimal way of living. This transition started with one crazy and chaotic place: MY CLOSET. Before having children, and maybe even that first year while dealing with postpartum depression, I had a serious shopping addiction.

Mix a shopping addiction with zero knowledge into the horrific conditions of the fast fashion industry, and you got yourself a pretty ugly situation.

The research into sustainable, fair trade and mindful consumerism started about 18 months ago, and I have been absolutely hooked ever since. As a result, I took my time learning and understanding how much of the system works and took these tips and tricks to my own closet.

I swear…once I tackled that monster, everything else seemed to fall into place. Our kitchen, pantry, and even living room followed suit. One particular place that I have really come to love is the bedroom of my twin toddlers which features an open closet. Their closet is exactly what a child’s closet should look like:

Sweet, Simple and Easy to Work With.

By choosing each piece carefully and mindfully, I was able to create a sort of capsule wardrobe for my children without much work. It’s interesting how taking our time with selection, taking into account how many times the child will wear each piece, and sizing up for longer use can really transform any closet into a fully “usable” sustainable closet. So many times, we forget that clothes are meant to be worn over and over again until their life cycle has ended and not just a trend to toss away. Choosing wisely can mean the difference between a closet that works for you or against you.

If you are ready to explore the magical world of sustainable, second hand, fair trade (and more!) fashion for kids, look no further than this Full Guide to Sustainable Shopping for Children’s Clothes!

sustainable fashion for children

Saving Money While Saving the World!

 

First Up: Help Clothes to Reach The End of Their Lifecycle #30Wears and Beyond

 

Sustainable Shopping for Children's Clothes

Second-Hand Finds: From their heads to their toes!

First of all, what some of you may (or may not) know about our family is that we shop primarily second hand. Our sons clothes are 100% from my grandmother and mother’s garage sale finds since birth, and we did not start to introduce “new” clothing until every single last piece of their amazing finds had reached the end of their cycle with the boys. This simply means that my sons grew out of them all quite fast – as most children do.

This is something that we all need to keep in mind as parents. Children grow quickly.

Too quickly for new clothes to have any chance of sustainability in a child’s closet. 

The most sustainable and eco-friendly thing that you can do as a consumer of children’s fashion is to shop second hand, vintage, rentals or any other means to help the clothes reach the end of their life cycles. Our goal here is to use and wear these materials as many times as possible before recycling or upcycling. We are talking about sustainability here and this is the facts: Nothing is more sustainable than what has already been made.

I am in no way saying that you shouldn’t feel free to support the many fair trade, ethical, eco-friendly and even upcycled brands out there. Just keep in mind that adding second-hand items to your children’s closets will genuinely help a pretty big crisis that we are facing in the world today.

Second Hand Shopping Guide

 

Second Hand Online Shops

 

ThredUP: The Largest Kids‘ Consignment and Thrift Store Online

Kid’s Dress Smart: Where 60% of proceeds of every sale sent directly to Children’s Charities

Kidizen: Kidizen is your resale marketplace to buy, sell, and swap your kid’s clothing, gear, toys, decor and more.

Little Luxuries: Gently worn, preloved, secondhand designer children and baby clothing brands

Baby Outfitter: Everything listed on Baby Outfitter is “like new” and they are very picky about selections and what they will sell!

Loopster UK: Where quality kid’s clothes live on

Facebook MarketPlace: A gem that has saved us a ton of money on everything from wooden toys to emergency shoes when our kids both shot up 2 sizes in under a month!

 

Second Hand Shops Nearest You (Physical Stores)

The Thrift Shopper Website: Simply type in your zip code and a huge directory of nearest consignment shops, goodwill shops and so forth will come up for you to check out!

Thriftigo APP: Download this app to keep second-hand store information readily available on your phone wherever you are!

Thrift Store Listings: Another helpful directory of local thrift stores based on your location.

 

Rental Companies for Sustainable Children’s Clothes

 

Renting clothes is such a fantastic way to stay sustainable but also have fun! From birthday parties to photoshoots, you can have exactly what you want and return back to the company for the item to make another child (and parent) happy!

Rainey’s Closet: Just one look at this gorgeous website and you will know that you can find just about any precious and gorgeous piece for any occasion. From fairy dresses, formal dresses and adorable bow and ties….you cannot go wrong with this rental service for any special occasion.

The Borrowed Boutique: Another gorgeous rental service that has a bit more clothing for boys as I noticed. I even saw a top hat!

Sylette Co: Another great rental company located in sunny Los Angelos!

Magical Clothing Rental Canada: A gorgeous rental store for our Canadian friends! Thousands to choose from and easy return service.

Bundlee UK: A very cool and more laid back version of the rental service for our UK friends. You can find pretty much everything on this rental site!

Circos Rental for Kids and Maternity: This rental is for kids up to 2 years old and new mamas in Europe!

 

Sustainable Shopping for Children's Clothes

Shopping For New Clothes: Tips & Tricks

 

While second hand will forever have a special place in my heart, I will say that there is something quite special about finding that *perfect* piece of clothing that just meets every single one of your needs without having to go through countless shops and racks. Sometimes, no matter how long you look, you will not find that particular item that you need second hand. Do not fear; these tips will help you to keep your sustainable goals in check while also saving money and a few headaches along the way.

 

Sustainable Shopping for Children's Clothes

Alessandro in a brand new Petit Tembo sweatshirt that just exceeded all of our expectations. 

 

Go For the Basics

While the flashing shoes and tasselled shirts may intrigue your child at the shop, I urge you to get the basics down first before thinking of going with any trends. Basics include solid and durable t-shirts, long sleeves, sweaters, zip-ups, leggings, thermals, dungarees, rain suits/all-weather suits, rain boots, barefoot shoes, all-weather breathable hats, gloves, circular scarves, durable and warm socks, and any imperative weather gear for where you are living.
Each one of these basics should come in a solid or easy to clean print. While I always recommend going second hand with most of any child’s closet, some superb brands offer these basics. One brand that I always check out sale season (late summer and late winter) is Patagonia. They have, by far, the best layering pieces that I have encountered. I stock up during sale season, and I always keep on eye out for them when second-hand shopping.

Size Up 1-2 Sizes

One of the easiest things that you can do to help your child’s clothes have a longer (and happier!) life is to have them worn as much as possible!

One easy way to do this is by sizing up 1-2 sizes, depending on your child. I personally size up 2 sizes for the boys and it has worked beautifully. This year we’ve only had to purchase 2 pairs of pants and 2 extra sweatshirts for the chilly weather. By sizing up, I saved a significant amount of money!
While my sons currently fit in a size 2T, I only search for 4T and even have all of our collaborations send over the larger sizes. Any parent can easily roll up or hem the clothes to fit the child at the time and let them out over the years. You do not have to be any sort of professional tailor here, I promise you! I do the simple roll-up method, and it works like a charm.

Ask The Question: How Many Times Will This Be Worn?

While we will be asking many questions along the way, this first question will help you to steer clear of any items that you should save for the RENTAL category. If you hold up an item and cannot guarantee that your child will hit at least 30 wears, then simply put it down and step away from the item (this is a wonderful trick to work for parents too!).
If you can guarantee that the item will be work 30+ times, then you can move on to the following questions…

 

Two Key Follow Up Questions

Here are two key questions to ask before adding the item to your little one’s closet for the most sustainable and ethical approach:

  • Who made this and under what conditions? A simple question that should be asked before purchasing any item. Most importantly, a sustainable company will have this information readily available to you without any trouble whatsoever. In fact, the good guys want to share this information with you more than anything!
  • What is this made of? Take a look at the tag and check out the fabrics. Is it organic? Synthetic? Does it contain flame retardants? All very good questions to answer before allowing the item into your home and opening your wallet to support the brand.

 

Always Choose Natural Fibers over Synthetic

 

Linen, Organic Cotton, and hemp are some of the best materials for children’s clothing. Synthetic materials do have a place in fashion for durable swimsuits and even winter jackets, but try your best to keep these purchases for the second-hand category. We want to aim to decrease the use of plastic in the fashion industry and your money truly does make a huge difference.

Natural fibers are best for the environment and your children for so many reasons:

  • Natural fibers cause much less (or zero) irritation to skin.
  • Natura fibers are much less resource-intensive to produce and manufacture.
  • Synthetic materials “shed” microplastics that have been found sneaking their way into our very own drinking water.
  • Many synthetic materials use toxic production processes that are harmful to the waterways, the garment workers and the person who wears the item.

 

Learn How to Mend, Repair and Upcycle

One of the best ways to help to reduce waste your very own home is to learn just a few simple tricks of the trade. This can be as simple as learning how to sew, hem, patch and upcycle old clothes and broken items around the house. Like we always say, there is nothing more sustainable than what you already own!

You can find a local sewing class, take a few online lessons via youtube or even host a little “trade” party! I have actually been to a few fun coffee dates where my friend’s mother and grandmother would come and they would teach us something fun like knitting, baking an epic cake or even tips & tricks to help with the little ones. These are marvelous gifts to learn from the hand of an expert and I cannot tell you how much I cherished learning these skills from these amazing women.

The Best Vegan Lasagna Ever! (Kid Approved)

There you have it! Just a few helpful ways to shop with a more mindful and sustainable approach. I promise you; once you start you will be absolutely amazed at how GREAT it feels to be part of the sustainable movement. We need you. The World needs us to be much more mindful and conscious of our consumer decisions. Thank you so much for taking the time to read and I would love to hear your own tips and tricks to sustainable living!

p.s. Check out our top 5 sustainable and ethical children’s brands here!

 

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Petit Tembo
Sustainable and Organic Children’s Clothing by Petit Tembo

Sustainable and Organic Children’s Clothing by Petit Tembo

Our children’s clothes are 90% second-hand goods passed down from generation to generation, but we do enjoy finding new companies to work with to promote sustainable children’s clothing via organic cotton, hemp, bamboo, and even upcycling of materials.

I am honored to feature Petit Tembo, the gorgeous Canadian brand, in today’s sustainable children’s fashion feature. I cannot speak highly enough of this company and the softness of their fabrics. The boys have hit their #30wears within just a couple of short months!

I am a big believer in the words of Ms. Westwood…

Buy less. Choose well. Make it last.

// Vivienne Westwood //

 

Sustainable and Organic Children's Clothing by Petit Tembo
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