Reviews by Annabel Andrews, Alice Ellerby, Saffia Farr, Alice Farrell, Jo Hallworth, Terry James and Alex Turner
In both our Sustainable Clothing review and our JUNO Best Buy, we share clothing ideas from companies doing their best to help families make sustainable and practical choices at different stages of family life. We share information about clothing that you can – and hopefully will want to – wear while breastfeeding and beyond; we showcase companies such as Rapanui who will upcycle clothing that you have finished with into new items; and individuals making unique items, such as Hannah from O Moon who creates clothing from scraps of fabric, hoping she can persuade families to invest in handmade, sustainable items.
Hannah says, “I’m keen to encourage parents to invest in truly sustainable clothes for their children, with the focus on buying less, but better quality. My pieces are cut to grow with the child – always beautiful turn-ups to utilise, and an option to send back when the wearer has outgrown the waistband to have it enlarged. I also offer a free repair kit. I believe that the modern consumer needs to be persuaded towards a change of attitude regarding new clothing. We have become comfortable with the industrialised process yet distanced from the harsh reality of fast fashion. I also advocate buying second hand very much as well, and have always balanced buying new but sustainable pieces alongside second-hand purchases and hand-me-downs. I would love to encourage the conscious consumer to ‘buy better, buy less, make it last’, as well as washing clothing less often, and of course, repairing! I’m all about creating clothes that my customers really value and treasure.”
As consumers, we have so many choices, let’s do the best we can.
The Sienna breastfeeding-friendly t-shirt is made from a super soft organic cotton, which drapes beautifully. Two zips at the chest allow for easy breastfeeding wherever you find yourself needing to feed. The zips are nice and sturdy and easy to use one-handed – always a winner with a baby in tow! I also liked that they were ingeniously lined so that the zips never rub anywhere sensitive. The longer hem at the back is perfect for wearing with leggings. I know this is going to be great for layering in the winter without getting in the way of feeding my baby and it’s perfect for feeding in a sling. The beautiful quality fabric and construction means I will be able to pass it on to another mum once I’ve weaned. AA
Reversible Toasty Trail Jacket
This is just the jacket for children who love being outdoors! The quilted showerproof coat is incredibly cosy and warm, perfect for hours of exploring and playing outside, and you won’t have to worry about your small person getting all shivery and cold. The hood fits well and actually stays on, and the fleece-lined pockets are deep and warm for hands that refuse to wear gloves. The jacket is reversible, so you can choose between the vibrant pattern or the block colour reverse. It’s lightweight and not at all bulky, and it squashes down into a small matching bag for taking with you just in case. It is made from 100% post-consumer recycled polyester – recycled plastic bottles – and it has a durable water repellent and fluorocarbon-free finish to help prevent stains and extend the life of the jacket. Frugi recommends using a Guppyfriend washing bag to catch any microfibres released when washing the jacket to prevent them making their way into the marine ecosystem. AE
This hoodie is made from beautifully thick, soft, organic cotton. Put this on your child and they will become irresistibly huggable! It is comfy and relaxed and is ideal as an extra layer or worn under dungarees. Simply designed, it has a great big pocket on the front for storing any special finds, and a lovely cross-over detail at the neck. It is generously sized and comes up long on the body to keep out any unwanted drafts. The cuffs stop the sleeves interfering with busy hands or they can be easily turned up for messier play. It comes in a range of bright and bold gender-neutral colours that are dyed in the UK, and all Beeboobuzz clothes are manufactured in the UK as well. AE
Emmanuelle Denim Dress
I love shirt dresses so was very excited to try this dress. It’s incredibly flattering, being fitted around the waist, and has great pockets – always a win for me in any dress. It is fitted around the bust as well, which needs to be taken into consideration when choosing sizing, especially for me! You can dress it up or down. I have been rolling the sleeves up, but you could layer up under and over it so that it can be worn year-round. The denim is thick but soft, so it feels durable. Yes, this dress comes at a higher price than many, but it should last a lifetime. Denim has a high environmental impact due to water usage so People Tree have worked hard to produce an eco-denim which is produced using 90% less water (the dress is made from 98% organic certified cotton and 2% elastane) and if you wear it for years and years, the impact is even less. SF
Men’s Organic Cotton Flannel Shirt
This is a fantastic shirt! I tried the herringbone design and I really like it. The fabric is very soft and the fit is flattering. It has details such as two buttons on the cuff which make the shirt look smart if you want to dress it up. The shirt is made in Portugal from 100% organic cotton flannel, 180–220 gsm, and is designed on the Isle of Wight. Rapanui are committed to making the whole cycle of each item of clothing waste free: products are made from the waste fabric and the cycle itself is renewable. Rapanui clothing can be returned when it is worn out (with free postage in the UK) and the company will recover and remanufacture the material into a new product, rewarding the customer with a coupon that you can use to save money on your next purchase. This really is sustainable fashion! TJ
Cable Knit Romper Suit
This is a beautifully made romper. The knitted fabric is wonderfully soft and looks gorgeous. The mustard yellow option is lovely and vibrant and looks great on my little one (the other colours in the range look fab too). It is stylish and perfect for autumn/winter as it is warm and cosy; I was impressed with the thickness and quality of the fabric Generous sizing allows for lots of active play and the cable knit fabric has a good amount of give to ensure comfort. I like the fact that the cuffs on the legs can be rolled up or down as your child grows, to ensure longevity. This is certainly an item of clothing that we will treasure and can hopefully be passed down and worn by other children. AF
We really love our Wildling Honeybear shoes. The mustard yellow colour is versatile and they look great. They are super lightweight which is perfect for an active toddler. My little one really enjoys the toggle and elastic fasteners which aid him to dress himself and be independent. Because my toddler is between sizes, the insoles work a treat, and I like that there are options to make them more snuggly for the winter. Overall, a great product, and I think I will be treating myself to another pair soon! Wildling shoes are manufactured in compliance with high-quality craftmanship, fair working conditions and a commitment to continuing to reduce the company’s ecological footprint. AT
Vintage Poppy and Navy Cord Big Pocket Trousers
These cord trousers are completely gorgeous. Although they cost more than I would normally spend on clothes for my daughter, they are really very special. The whole philosophy of O Moon clothes is that they are made to last, with features such as turn-ups, and can be handed down time and time again. The trousers feel totally unique and not at all mass-produced. Each piece is handmade to order and you can see and feel the care that has gone into their fabrication. The material is thick, soft and durable – like they could stand being worn by an active child – and the bold poppy print pockets are beautifully lined, as are the turn-ups. Hannah, who set up O Moon, is passionate about using the resources we already have on the planet and she often sources the print fabrics from charity shops and boot sales. The clothes are made with all-natural fibres and organic fabrics. These trousers really are beautiful – I felt like I was putting my daughter in a work of art! AE
Lah Lan Nore Blouse
This 100% organic cotton Lah Lan Nore Blouse is really well made. The neck is sewn on all edges from soft unbleached cotton so that it does not bother or itch. The blouse has a double closure, which ensures that bare skin does not appear between the buttons, and the poppers all the way up the side mean it is very easy to take on and off. It is perfect for autumn weather as it can be worn as a light jumper too. The sizing is generous – the 6–12 months fitted my averaged-sized 14-month-old daughter, so it will last well. The waffle pattern has a nice texture which she enjoyed to feel and it washes well too. JH
This feature was originally published in JUNO Autumn 2020.