2019 has been, rightly, a watershed year for sustainability in fashion: from big-name luxury houses going carbon neutral to emerging designers doing it their own way, conversations about shopping less and shopping better have come to the fore. Such conversations are particularly apt during the festive season, an unbridled month of spending and waste. Shift your habits with our list of conscious gifts for your loved ones this Christmas – captured by photographer Tex Bishop and AnOther Magazine’s Molly Shillingford – from vegan beauty to precious recycled jewels.
1. Atelier Swarovski has long placed environmentally conscious practices at the heart of what they do. A precious 15-piece collection of jewellery, embedded with variously coloured crystals, takes this one step further: made in collaboration with long-term environmental activist Susan Rockefeller, the Beautiful Earth collection will see part of the proceeds go to The Nature Conservancy to help protect giant pandas in China (accordingly, panda and bamboo motifs are found throughout the collection).
2. The Nue Co’s ‘Functional Fragrance’ does as its name suggests: more than just a scent, it is functional too, designed to help you press reset in moments of stress (it was developed using data and research about the connection between cognitive function and the olfactory system). Green cardamom, iris, palo santo and coriander make for a clean, fresh scent, while a 100 per cent vegan, cruelty-, phthalate-, paraben-, hexane-free formulation and 95 per cent recyclable packaging make it a guilt-free gift.
3. Vivienne Westwood is perhaps fashion’s original – and most voracious – activist, dedicating her voice to numerous causes, from fracking to climate change to civil liberties. These two vegan bags – the first crafted from rustic cotton printed with Brueghel’s painting of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, the other emblazoned with the designer’s signature orb – are ways to support the cause (and, of course, a welcome addition to any wardrobe).
4. Stella McCartney is another lifelong activist: her namesake brand is entirely vegetarian – her vegan bags continue to be the best on the market – and has numerous policies in place to ensure that her clothing is as sustainable as possible. Just as important, though, her designs are more than covetable: this faux-leather bucket bag will make a much-used gift, while these strappy faux-leather sandals are the perfect accompaniment to a season of parties.
5. Rosh Mahtani’s Alighieri has found a devoted legion of fans for its precious jewellery – or, as Mahtani describes, “modern heirlooms” – inspired by the tales of Dante’s 14th-century epic poem, Inferno. Few people know, though, that each piece is made from recycled Italian bronze, recast in London’s Hatton Garden (and just three streets from Alighieri’s studio). This chunky gold-plated necklace and bracelet are beautiful demonstrations of Mahtani’s craft-focused approach.
6. Reject gawdy fragrance gift sets this Christmas for any of the delectable scents by Clean Reserve: made more so by their eco-credentials, which includes a commitment to responsibly sourced ingredients and collaborations with world-leading fragrance producers chosen for their sustainability and philanthropy. Our favourite is their Sueded Oud eau de parfum, a creamy, multi-layered scent with rich notes of temple oud, jasmine and bushman candle.