Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Fashion:Remix Team Celebrates Earth Day!

Well, tomorrow is quite possibly the biggest day of the year for the Fashion:Remix Team! Tomorrow, April 22nd is Earth Day! A movement beginning in the U.S.A. way back in the 1970's has continued to grow and change over time. Earth Day was founded by a Wisconsin Senator in direct response to the devastation wrought by massive oil spill in California the year before.
Earth Day 1970 achieved a rare political alignment, enlisting support from Republicans and Democrats, rich and poor, city slickers and farmers, tycoons and labor leaders. The first Earth Day led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Acts. "It was a gamble," Gaylord recalled, "but it worked." -from Earth Day: The History of A Movement

Today, the destruction of the environment is recognized on a global scale and many groups seek to continue awareness and develop personal responsibility and stewardship for everyone. The reduce, reuse, recycle concept has received a boost thanks to the devastating slow down in the global economy following the culture of consumptions from decades prior. More and more households are beginning to realize their place in the new global economy and how each of us impacts many around the world. In 2011, frugality and thriftiness have regained their moral high ground and are celebrated. How will you celebrate your Earth Day this April 22nd?

The Fashion:Remix Team wants to encourage the creative reuse of reclaimed and recycled materials coupled with good design, hand crafting and an attention to detail. We want you to support sustainable fashion by purchasing a refashioned frock or am upcycled accessory. We encourage you to browse our shops by searching on Etsy for the tags, "fashionremixteam" and "earthday". We're each offering different discounts and sales so if you see something you like, be sure to check our shop announcements for coupon codes, or convo us for more information.

Here's a sampling of the beautiful, sustainable articles created by our team members:

Happy Earth Day!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Uniform Project: Year 2

In January 2010, I wrote a brief guest blogger article on The Uniform Project for The Great American Apparel Diet called, "The Uniform Project: Inspiration for those in the fashion doldrums". I had accidentally stumbled upon this while looking for inspiration for restyling my clothes. I love look books, they serve as great inspiration for refashioning clothes. This project took the concept of the look book and restyling to the extreme, all in an effort to raise money for educating children in India:
Thus, in May 2009, with fashion as her medium, and education her cause, U.P Founder Sheena Matheiken launched the Uniform Project, pledging to wear one little black dress for 365 days as an exercise in sustainability and a fundraiser to support the Akanksha Foundation— a non-profit organization providing education to underprivileged children living in Indian slums. And for the next year, Sheena reinvented her uniform by accessorizing with vintage, handmade, reused, or donated pieces.
This project was inspirational on so many levels. It proved that you can lift modestly, but do it with style and serve a higher purpose all at the same time. I really enjoyed watching the dailies and voting on them, at the end of the year when everything was auctioned off I tuned out. I decided to check back in to see what the U.P. is up to for year 2 and was pleasantly surprised.

TEDxDubai 2010| Sheena Matheiken from Giorgio Ungania on Vimeo.

Apparently, they've been very busy after all; now it appears that the project is even bigger than before. The video above is a speech that Sheena, the U.P. creator, gave in Dubai at TEDx last year. In it she explains the history and the future of the next evolution of the Uniform Project. They have moved to pilots, where individuals participate by making the U.P. their own. They follow all of the original rules of wearing only vintage or handmade accessories, and the same little black dress each day and raise money to support the cause of their choice. It's a series of pilots actually, and rather than an entire year, each person does a mini-challenge of one-month. You can follow each of the pilot dailies as well and track their earnings. I love this idea and may even get up the nerve to try this myself one day. If you would like to create your own challenge wearing the famous LBD, the U.P. has actually opened a store where you can purchase it in their new store or make your own using the pattern they've created. Naturally all of the proceeds are going to charity, so you can feel good about buying a new frock. Check out the U.P. LBD below with photos and information directly from the site.

Classic U.P LBD

Support the Kids

Contribute $14 USD from your dress purchase to the Akanksha Foundation for the education of underprivileged children in India. Learn more

Join the Movement

Let this LBD be your personal styling canvas. Wear it over and over, again and again. Take the U.P pledge and join us in changing our world one outfit at a time. Take the U.P Pledge

$140 USD

Order Now

The  LBD

And  remember... This is not a dress.

We believe the only way to create a sizable and meaningful shift in consumption is to design products that are not only ethically sound, but also beautiful, imaginative, and inspiring. Hence we give you the new Classic U.P LBD. During her year long fundraiser, Sheena showed us just how far a dress can go by mixing social responsibility with styling prowess. When you buy this dress you will be supporting our cause, and adding a versatile staple to your wardrobe. Get the full details.

We're Advertising on WebEcoist

As a follow-up to our earlier post about receiving a team grant from Etsy (Yeah!), I am happy to report that one of our advertisement's is live right now. We're on WebEcoist: Strange Nature, Rare Animals and Weird World Wonders. Why did we choose WebEcoist? Well, their site's "About" page sums up their awesome:
WebEcoist goes beyond being an ordinary ‘green’ lifestyle, design and travel publication. Sure, you will find articles on eco-friendly food, sustainable technology and innovations both good and bad but you will also discover a vast array of environmental oddities, natural disasters, fantastic plants and amazing animals. The site is thus a (free) one-stop shop for everything about our Earth – including great guides to eco-friendly facts, the sustainable web, our environmental history and the green movement.
How fun is that? So, in your time over the next seven days, be sure to head over to check out our ad and tell us what you think. Better yet, check out our team store and heart your favorite items. You can also find us on by searching for "fashionremixteam". Thanks for supporting sustainable fashion!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Featured Team Member: benddownboutique

The Fashion:Remix Team member featured this month hails from the U.K. Please welcome Katherine Umunna of benddownboutique.

SerendipiT: You've been a member of our team for quite a while now and we'd all love to get to know more about you and your beautiful work. What can you tell us about yourself?

benddownboutique: Hi! I'm Katherine, also known as Kitty or Kat, and I'm a Londoner at heart, but I am currently studying a BA Textiles Degree at the University for Creative Arts in Surrey, so I reside here too! I have been recycling clothes since I was probably 16, where I made the most gorgeous jeans tote bag, accessorised with junk I found laying around the house! But I have been selling my designs for the past 18 months, and it is slow, but steady, I know I can probably do this full time once I graduate!

SerendipiT: Wow, well it sounds like you are definitely on the path to success. I know I speak for the whole team when I say that I wish you much success. You have really unique eye and a clear creative voice in your work. I've noticed that you feature a lot of patchwork and applique and the juxtoposition of patterns, colors and styles. What inspires you?

benddownboutique: Anything and everything inspires me; I could be watching the TV, or flicking through a Fashion Magazine, or I could really be into a type of genre and it would spur me to create all sorts of things. Everything I design is more of a "aspirational" perspective; say, if I was more stylish, I would wear this, or if I was more rebellious, I would wear that... come to think of it, I think it depends on my mood!

SerendipiT: You mentioned that you've been refashioning clothes since you were 16; how did you get started with that and why do you continue to refashion?

bendownboutique: I think its very important to choose the refashioned route. But I would do this because its a way of expressing yourself with the minimal materials that you have, and making your own stamp on the world, whilst impacting less on the environment!

SerendipiT: What drew you to our little team?

benddownboutique: I came across the Fashion Remix Team on Etsy, I thought that it was really cool that there was a group that appreciated the theory of recycling and creating the most amazing pieces. It also is such a privilege to work with such amazing designers! My favorite team member shop is Mountain Girl Clothing; the garments are so hippie-chic, and so quirky, and also very original, its like this is a trend in itself, and its amazing.

SerendipiT: Do you have a particular material that you prefer?

benddownboutique: I love working with cotton- its so much easier to work with when upcycling, and its easier on my sewing machine!

SerendipiT: Let's get personal...tell me a few of your favorite things.

benddownboutique: I LOVE LOVE LOVE Violet Bella's Etsy shop- I have been following her since last summer and I love the free spirited nature of her designs, and I love the fact that she is multi-talented; selling recycled clothing, art pieces, and creating jewellery, AND photography. She is my inspiration.

My favorite blog is probably either lune vintage/elsie cake, they are so cool, with their whimsical lives, and interesting views on life, and fashion. I just really enjoy their way of running a business. I must say, I'm tempted to migrate to America! :)

I love working with scraps when I'm designing for my shop, but when I'm not designing I love working with acrylic paint, its very theraputic to work with.

Favorite book: Leap of Faith, by Danielle Steel

Favorite movie: Juno!

Favorite Colour: Green- ALTHOUGH I have a lot of pink stuff... oh dear!

SerendipiT: Wow, well that's a lot of great stuff for me to check out. I love to shop among my teammates favorite stores; you meet so many cool creators that way. I've never really gotten into Danielle Steel, but I may just have to give it a whirl now. Juno was a great movie and I too love to wear all shades of green, but am secretly in love with pink and orange this year also.

So, aside from Etsy, where do you like to shop for materials and personal clothing?

benddownboutique: Hmm... I always go to the RSPCA charity shop in Farnham, they have the most cutest, and cheapest clothing. I love going there when I have next to no money because I know that they always have something for me, whatever my budget is!

Although I like vintage, I don't like to buy stuff from vintage shops, because I just really see it as "expensive second hand goods", and I wouldn't pay so much money for something I could get at a Charity shop.

Everyone must shop on; they have the most luxurious and eccletic clothing, and its all for a decent price, so everyone gets a benefit :)

SerendipiT: Ok, it's about to get weird so hold on to your seat....If you were an article of clothing, what would you be and why?

benddownboutique: If I was an article of clothing... I would be a dress; dresses are so free, and expressive and colourful, it really does make me feel so girly!

SerendipiT: Good call, and I've got to say that's a pretty popular answer to boot. For the record, I completely agree, dresses do make me feel free and girly and wonderful.

Are there any special Etsians out there that you'd like to send a shout out to?

benddownboutique: I want to give a huge shout out to:
Elizabeth at; without her adding me to the team, I think I would still be trying to figure my shop out on my own, but its really good to have a team of people to help me :)

I'd also like to thank Hannah at for giving me that extra push to get myself out there in the etsy world, when I first started. She really made me see that I was doing a good thing with all the encouragement I got from her!

SerendipiT: Aw, really? A shout out for moi! That's so sweet; thank you very much. It's been a real pleasure having you on the team and I've really enjoyed watching your shop grow and mature. Keep up the great work because you are a real example of sustainable clothing that is fashionable and adorable.

Ok, last chance. What's the one thing that we should all know about you?

benddownboutique: I have never tried stuffing before. Don't judge me!

SerendipiT: I love it! That's the most awesomely random answer to a question that I think I've ever received. While I promise not to judge, you really officially have to come to the U.S. and try some good old fashioned stuffing, preferably around the Thanksgiving holiday.

Thanks for taking the time to share your story, your uplifting attitude and your beautiful creations with us today. We look forward to seeing what greatness you invent this year.

Check out more of Kat's great fashions:


The Fashion:Remix Team is Awarded a Grant from!

The Etsy Community consists of buyers and sellers meeting in many ways including, forums, events and teams. The Fashion:Remix Team is a group of sellers within the Etsy Community united by our interest in creating eco-friendly fashion. Etsy helps support it's teams by offering a grant monthly to teams. In March Etsy awarded the Fashion:Remix Team a grant for advertising. As a global team this will help unite us through advertising as a collective to increase exposure for our individual stores, the team and Etsy as a whole. So, look for our future advertising announcements and support sustainable fashion and support handmade.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

We're Growing!

While the Fashion:Remix Team has been enjoying steady organic growth among Etsy sellers interested in banding together with other members who refashion clothes and create recycled accessories, we've recently seen extraordinary growth due to our recent mention in the Etsy Teams newsletter. We've ballooned to 69 team member shops! This really allows some great diversity by location and a wealth of skills that will allow all of us the opportunity to learn and grow with the team. You can follow us by clicking on the link to our page on Etsy, but to help keep us all organized according to category I've added a new page. Check out the "Meet the Team" page on our blog where each seller is listed by product category and location so now you can view sellers by item or shop local too! So, come say hello and browse among the member shops and keep an eye out for future updates on the team.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Spring Fever

As the weather begins to warm here on the East Coast I am already planning mountain biking trips, gardening plots and just a lovely day in the sun with no winter coat to weigh me down. This treasury is an ode to my spring fever.

Here's to sunny weather!

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Spring Cometh by Elizabeth of SerendipiT

Well, it's hard to believe that winter will ever end, especially since the majority of the U.S. is being hammered by awful winter weather for the last week or so. Snow, ice and wintry mix, the forecast buzzwords that can be heard everywhere along the North East lately don't exactly call to mind fun in the sun. However, the folks at Pantone, who begin looking at fashion runways in the fall, analyze what they see and predict the colors for the next season. After, they post the Pantone Fashion Color Report filled with their predictions. What I find particularly exciting is that this year's colors have been themed, "An Exotic Journey". And seriously, who doesn't want to go on one of those? I can easily sit here at my desk and imagine myself being whisked away to someplace warm and exotic like Morocco, India, Egypt to name a few. It's likely that designers have tapped into our collective subconscious as they determine which colors will lead the next trends. In thinking of the U.S., where are we as a nation? Well, mostly we are depressed, anxious and weary as embattled consumers await the spring of our financial discontent. These colors represent our "need to escape" and perk up our wardrobes with "feel-good" colors like Honeysuckle pink. What I found most interesting is that they have tried to appeal to our newly found frugality by allowing us to work with the wardrobe we already have rather than encouraging us to toss everything and don something more avant-garde. The Pantone Fashion Color Report says, "By cleverly combining complementary colors, those that are opposites on the color wheel, they have created a striking intensity in the palette. These unique color combinations make it possible for consumers to pair existing pieces in colors traditionally associated with fall, with new favorites to punch up springtime wardrobes." That's certainly good news for women like me, who are always looking for new and interesting ways to work with what we already have. I was happy to see some of my very favorite colors included, variations of teal, turquoise, pink and purple. One color that I see myself adding to my wardrobe for the spring is mustard yellow. It is similar to the beeswax listed in the report, but a bit more earthy and is more flattering to my particular skin tone. Interestingly enough, sunny yellow has always signified optimism. Maybe that means that our collective consciousness has finally taken a sigh, decided that it can only go up from here and are trying to move past the anger, outrage and utter desperation that many of us have felt from the seeming bailout of Wall St. and the abandonment of Main St. I, for one, am happy to be moving to a sunnier side of the street.

I'll be incorporating these colors into my personal wardrobe and focusing on these color combinations for my Etsy store, SerendipiT and the Fashion:Remix Team Store as well.

In the meantime, enjoy my mustard inspired treasury.

Happy Travels to your faraway land of choice. Even if that exotic locale exists only in your mind and can only be accessed from your couch. Where will you be traveling?

*This post originally appeared on

Monday, January 24, 2011

Book Review: Alabama Chanin

I frequently purchase books on crafting, recycling, sewing, knitting, get the picture. Although I've only been crafting for a short time I have gone head over heels for craft books. My most recent addition is Alabama Stitch Book: Projects and Stories Celebrating Hand-Sewing, Quilting and Embroidery for Contemporary Sustainable Style. Let me say that I adore this book. I've already read it cover to cover. The photos are beautiful and inspiring. The projects are within reach for even the novice stitcher. What I love most are that she combines beautiful, well-crafted design with refashioning. She takes old tshirt, some dual-duty thread, and a few simple designs and makes art. I am excited to try nearly ever single project in the book, which is a rarity for me. Her clear instructions, easily accessible notions, included patterns and stencils ensure that you are ready to craft. My only complaint is that the patterns attached in the book are double sided and need to be photocopied, but unfortunately they are an unwieldy size and double-sided so the markings bleed through on the copies. However, this is easily corrected by using pattern paper and tracing over the top. You could even use copy paper and tape it together, then hold it all up to a brightly lit window an accomplish the same thing if needed. In the end, I can't heap enough praise on this book for it's beautiful, understated simplicity. With the guidance and inspiration from this book you can begin crafting your own heirloom pieces from reclaimed fabric. High fashion style can be had by everyone for just a few dollars. It's a reminder that fashion belongs to all of us and with some hard work and a little imagination you can make truly remarkable things. Most of all, the easy-wearing cotton jersey fabric is something that can be as a casual as a tank top or as fancy as a beaded formal skirt, everything is what you make it. Once you've picked up your copy of the book, be sure to check out the Alabama Chanin website which has DIY kits, projects, a blog and more.

Here's a project that was published by Ecouterre, a website devoted to sustainable fashion design:
DIY Nation
Refresh Your Wardrobe With Alabama Chanin’s DIY Circle-Spiral Appliqué
by Natalie "Alabama" Chanin, 06/30/10

Book Review by Elizabeth of, Fashion:Remix Team Leader.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Featured Team Member: BridgetGoette

The Fashion:Remix Team has been working together to promote sustainable fashion on Etsy. In addition to our team store, each of us has our individual stores where we sell our handmade love. In 2011 we are continuing to grow and evolve, not only as team members, but also in our stores. Many of us have resolved to offer new products, sharpen our photography skills and focus on contributing to the team. However, as a reminder that each shop is special and has a unique designer at it's heart, the blog will feature bios and interviews with our team members. We are going to kick-off the 2011 series with Bridget of Bridget Goette Designs.

SerendipiT: Good Morning Bridget, thanks for allowing me to interview you as our Featured Team Member for January 2011! Why don't we start with a little information about yourself? Where in the world are you located and what makes you unique?

BridgetGoette: I live in northern Minnesota where I run a small creative business out of my home. I have been creating clothing for myself from the time I was a schoolgirl. I also enjoy sewing gifts for friends and family members.

I continually exhibited my creations at area festivals including:

The Harvest Moon Festival in Ely, MN
Weinachtsfest in Biwabik, MN
The Festival of Trees in Duluth, MN
Oktoberfest at Rutger's Lodge near Brainerd, MN

Last winter, my mittens were sold in The Duluth Pack Store in Canal Park, a fun touristy area of Duluth, right on Lake Superior.

SerendipiT: Brrrr....No wonder your shop features so many beautiful, recycled wool mittens! According to the temperatures in your region are about 30 degrees below the U.S. average. So, other than the weather, where do you get your inspiration?

BridgetGoette: I love paging through magazines and cutting out pictures of fun ideas, articles of clothing, or color schemes that I can imitate in my own work. I like to give my items my own personal style, which usually involve bright, fun colors.

SerendipiT: Excellent ideas for inspiration. You definitely have many beautiful color combinations featured in your work. I love the bright and fun pinks and purples and the always classic black, red and white.

SerendipiT: So, why refashioned?

BridgetGoette: I see so much waste in the world. It makes sense to me, economically and ecologically, to buy used clothing, furniture, housewares, and etc. Why should I buy something brand new that has to be flown here on an airplane from China that is going to pollute the earth? I can find something created out of previously used materials that will contribute much less pollution to our earth.

SerendipiT: What materials do you use the most in your work?

BridgetGoette: My favorite clothing material is felted wool. It's hard to believe, but felted wool is even warmer than regular wool. This is because the fibers have condensed, making it nearly impossible for wind or cold to penetrate. Felted wool is a mandatory material in my winter wardrobe. How else could one survive Minnesota winters?

SerendipiT: Well, you've got a point there. Aside from crawling into a tantan, which isn't nearly as stylish or practical, I don't think you could find anything warmer than recycled wool mittens to keep you comfortable and cozy in Minnesota in the dead of winter.

SerendipiT: So when you do shop, where's your favorite place?

BridgetGoette: There's a great thrift store in St. Cloud, MN called Treasure Chest. I like shopping here because all the proceeds go to support Birthline. Birthline is a christian organization providing education, mentoring, support services and referrals to anyone affected by an unintended or crisis pregnancy. It makes me feel good, knowing my purchase will help someone else.

SerendipiT: I enjoy thrifting too! I really like the fact that the fun stuff that I find at my local Goodwill goes to help create jobs. There is so much that is great about buying used from thrift stores because it benefits you and your community. It's so great that you take the time to do the same thing in your neck of the woods. So, if you could be any article of clothing, what would it be?

BridgetGoette: If I were an article of clothing, I would be a pair of socks.On a chilly Minnesota morning, when nothing seems to combat the stinging climate, an extra pair of socks can provide warmth and comfort. My mom always said "if your feet are cold, the rest of you will be cold." It is true. That extra pair of socks warms your entire body, head to toe.

SerendipiT: Bridget, thanks so much for joining our little group of fashion remixers. As they say, it takes a village and our is a pretty cool little place thanks to people like you and the unique perspective that each person brings. Thanks for sharing a little bit about yourself with everyone else too.

Thanks for stopping by!