Sunday, 23 March 2008

Green Chic - Saving the Earth in Style

Can we live a gorgeous green lifestyle without giving in on the comfort of our luxury consumption habits? There is a boom of new conscious and green lifestyle magazines and advertisements that promise us that the new green is all about luxurious and quality living. They say LOHAS (Lifestyle of Health and Sustainability) do not give in with consuming less, they choose for a lifestyle of conscious hedonism. But how is that possible?

Trendy green lifestyle
After a wave of articles on the issue of trendy green lifestyle, lately more and more guides on green living are being published. I read two books for chic women, women who care about their style but are also concerned about our planet. Both books are stuffed with tips on how to live green in a stylish, enjoyable way.

Green Chic
Green Chic, Saving the Earth in Style is a book by Christie Matheson, who helps her readers changing their lifestyle towards a more energy saving and conscious one, while staying chic. A lot of attention goes to tips that help reduce CO2 emissions.

Green is the New Black
Green is the New Black, how to change the world with style, by Tamsin Blanchard, is focussed on style issues such as being a green fashionista, designing your own clothes, green weddings and holidays.

Showering less
In first instance I fell for the design of Green is the New Black, but even with style handbooks it's not all about the looks! Actually Green Chic is a better practical guide and goes a bit further in green lifestyle tips. While the first hangs a lot on style details and is written for women who can't resist their consumerist addictions, Green Chic dares to get her chic readers into showering less or changing their fashion habits completely. Green Chic contains a lot of open doors, such as "eat more local, organic whole foods" but also some serious background information on the sustainability of different textiles.

Green fashionista
I liked Green Chic because it went into changing your lifestyle towards more quality. The best part is the advice on changing your wardrobe. She advices you to "edit" your whole wardrobe until you only have clothes that you really, really love wearing. And to get rid of everything else. An interesting starting point of becoming a green fashionista...

Less is more
To come back to the dilemma weather luxurious green consume is possible, I believe the green chic lifestyle should not just be about endless luxury consumption. Green products often carry a special quality that cheap or conventional products don't have. But above all green living is about enjoying quality above quantity. In supermarkets you are tricked into all kinds of psychological discounts, and in the end you always buy more things than you need. Since I exchanged supermarkets for shopping at local organic stores and the organic week market, I buy much less and enjoy much more of the products I consume. It is a luxurious lifestyle just buying organic food, but it does not costs me more than my former consume habits. Really! So the best way to enjoy a green chic lifestyle is to give in on the quantity and go for the quality. Less is more.

There is also two new books on ethical fashion with alike titles: Eco Chic, The savvy shoppers guide to ethical fashion, by Mathilda Lee; and the almost released Eco-Chic, The fashion paradox, by Sandy Black.

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