eco-fashion has gotten a bad rep. stereotypes abound that the eco friendly clothing is too granola or too expensive, but if you just do a bit more digging, you can uncover a hidden gem. i have been to amour vert’s pop-up shop on fillmore street in my neighborhood a bunch of times, and have scooped up their super soft striped tees. i knew the line used organic fabrics, but it wasn’t until a few weeks ago when i attended a summer shopping event at the hayes valley boutique that i learned more about the brand and how much they are doing to change the face of sustainable fashion.
i had a chance to chat with founder linda balti about how the line came to be, and it started as a girl who always loved fashion. but instead of studying fashion design, she majored in computer science and made flight simulators. she met her husband (now ceo of the company), who developed a product to clear land mines, at a tradeshow. so neither one of them were in typical creative fields. balti still dreamed of fashion, but she also learned about the immense waste the fashion industry produces. when she wanted to start buying eco-friendly brands, she found what i mentioned above—options that weren’t in line with her taste or out of her budget. so while her husband was getting his mba at stanford, she started amour vert (green love in french) in 2009 with a capsule collection and a simple idea—buy a tee, plant a tree. now the company is headquartered in dogpatch, with items made in oakland and san francisco. the clothing is made of varied fabrics including indian silk, bamboo, polyester made from soda bottles, tencel & modal made from trees and ones she has developed in house. balti and her team take a sustainable approach to everything they do, from using ocean freight to biodegradable bags and paper to vegetable dyes.
balti’s french sense of style definitely comes through in what you’ll find in the line—loads of striped tees, tanks, and dresses, but also watercolor print dresses, dotted culottes, crisp shirting, knit jackets, and elegant skirts, like this wrap one. my friend lindsay was wearing it when i showed up at the event and i immediately needed to try it on. the wrap silhouette is so flattering; women of all sizes tried it on at the event and they all looked great in it. it could be worn in the winter with tights and boots, to the office, or at the beach wrapped over a sleek one-piece.
check out the entire collection and get $25 off your purchase, or if you’re in the bay area, visit their stores in hayes valley, tiburon, and soon in palo alto…
uniqlo shirt c/o, amour vert skirt c/o, zara shoes (old, similar here and here), chanel bag, super sunglasses, cluse watch, anita k choker, bite beauty amuse bouche lipstick in beetroot
photos by alex drysdale