Liz O’Meara is the creator of Ethical Souls. Having started her fashion career as a part-time stylist and blogger, she later felt an urge to own her own boutique. Over time, Liz became more concerned with the ingredients used in food and also in beauty products that she was using at the time. This concern also spread to her clothing too – and after feeling increasingly uneasy about where her clothes originated from, how they were made and how ethical the production process really was. This is when Liz deciding to launch Ethical Souls – a unique fashion boutique that supplies stylish, on-trend fashion and beauty items that are ethical, fair trade and natural without sacrificing style or coolness.
- Hello Liz, thank you for taking part in this interview for Online Personal Stylist. Could you tell us about your company Ethical Souls? What do you do and what do you offer?
- Describe a typical day for you at work…
- How did the idea to start your company come about?
- How are the materials used to make your products ethical? How can we shop ethically on a budget? What should we look for if we want to invest in high quality fashion items made from ethically sourced materials?
Shopping ethically on a budget is actually easier than you think. Firstly, look at what you already have. The majority of people’s wardrobes are brimming with beautiful clothes waiting to be worn. Go through your closet and wear what you have. If it doesn’t suit you, have it recycled or sent to a charity shop or give it to somebody who would love it. Do a styling course or work with a personal stylist to understand what suits you. Then buy essentials ethically once you understand your style and what suits you and buy pieces that are versatile and can be worn over and over again in every season. You shouldn’t have to shop every week or every month for that matter. Wear what you have! I will guarantee you, you will have more than enough already sitting in your wardrobe. Find a brilliant alterations shop and repair what you have or re-style what you have. Don’t like the frills on a dress? Have them removed! Don’t like how something sits on you have it altered. Broke that zip on that skirt, have it replaced. Broke that heel on your shoes, have it replaced by a cobbler.
Eventually, you will then need to replace something. Then when you do, you do it ethically and find a piece that you will love to wear over and over again because it suits your style. There is a reason why the fashion industry is called ‘Fast’ because it isn’t supposed to last and is usually of poor quality and won’t stand the test of time. Essentials (items you wear every day) should be bought ethically as the quality is better.
When you are looking for items that will last look for cotton, rayon, tencel and preferably organic it’s kinder on your skin.
- From your professional point of view, could you give us a brief guide to ethical equivalents of well known materials used to make fashion items, i.e. leather, fur, wool, etc. Which materials should we be looking out for?
- As you know, this interview is part of The Online Personal Stylist’s project: “The Ethical Style Project”, which aims to help and encourage others with their transition towards ethical fashion. What tips and advice would you give to those who are about to start their ethical style journey?
Find out more about Ethical Souls here: