Somewhere along the way, my friends dubbed me the "hippie in heels" alluding to my devotion to all things natural and socio/ecologically responsible – without sacrificing aesthetics, taste and beauty. So when I met Cora and Natasha, founders of rêve en vert at a dinner party recently – it was love at first cheers. Over organic Sancerre and locally sourced cheeses from the Hudson Valley, I learned that rêve en vert was the website of my tree-hugging-while-wearing-cashmere dreams. (Appropriate because the name translates literally from French to mean “dream in green.”)
Not only does the site carry effortlessly chic designers that are tough to find in the US, but they also adhere to strict guidelines of ethical manufacturing AND provide carbon neutral shipping. So while price points aren’t cheap (around that of Net-A-Porter) you are paying for both quality of product and peace of mind. And that…is worth every penny.
In recognition of Earth Day, I caught up with the London based, babes behind the brand to learn more about why rêve en vert really is a dream come true for every hippie in heels.
1. What is REV?
REV is an online platform that sells sustainably made but high-end fashion labels. We really wanted to build a platform that would showcase the best of independent designers who are consciously minded but have a great fashion eye. We intend to grow REV into a real lifestyle brand that sells sustainable, ethically made and beautiful products, ranging from furniture to beauty. Concept stores would be the dream.
2. What do you mean by “sustainable”?
We insist that all of our designers adhere to at least one of the following principles: independent, local, sustainable and ethical. On revenvert.com we have defined what each one means specifically to us but generally speaking we work with designers who make things by hand, work locally, use low environmental impact processes and materials, avoid the use of toxic dyes and tanning methods, and all strive to get back to the idea that fashion should be made to last and not disposable. It was important to us that we support designers making an effort to move towards better production means and that we support labels achieving this in a multitude of varied ways rather than being too stringent.
3. What was the impetus for starting REV?
REV was born out of a desire that each of us shared to shop consciously without having to forsake style and aesthetic for ethical standards. We couldn’t find a platform that catered about this in the way that we did so we set out to create it ourselves. We really want REV to be seen first and foremost as a place you can shop and be sure of finding a great mix of both. We each approach sustainability from different places but share that common goal.
4. What are 3 key lessons that we should be aware of/know when shopping for sustainable fashion?
- Always shop in terms of quality over quantity.
- Look at where your garments are produced-try and keep it as local as possible.
- Opt for organic cotton over regular, tencel or bamboo over polyester, and if you really need designer, try to go for vintage.
5. Any plans to celebrate Earth Day?
In honor of Earth Day we are hosting an intimate dinner party at our studio in East London for bloggers and fashion journalists under the theme “let’s make sustainability sexy”. We are having cocktails (fair-trade green tea caipirinhas to be exact) made for the event by Jamie Oliver’s restaurant Fifteen, which is right next door to us. An organic and vegetarian catering company is doing the food, and all of the flowers will be themed for the night and then potted for re-use by our local florist. The idea is to raise the discussion with influential people in fashion, but to showcase companies working towards this in innovative and beautiful ways.
In conjunction with this we are also running a social media campaign asking people to photograph and share their favorite people, places or things on Earth in order to showcase what is worth saving the planet for. We plan to pick a winner with the most interesting take on this, and will be offering a pair of hand-made Shwood sunglasses as a prize for the winning entry. To join in, snap a shot of something you love and post on Instagram (@revenvert) using #dreamingreen. Bonne chance!