Welcome to our brand new weekly feature; Tuesday Chats. This will be a weekly interview with some amazing people from the health, wellness, sustainable and conscious community. Foodies, Fashion designers, Health Coaches, Naturopaths, and more… People who are doing right by the world! Beautiful people who I WANT YOU TO MEET!
I have been having so much fun with my “wearing” posts lately, I see no better person to start off this new part than the lovely Carlie from Ethical and Sustainable fashion business; Indigo Bazaar. So here’s 5 minutes with Carlie Ballard.
1. Tell us a bit about yourself and your business. How did it all start?
I’ve always loved fashion but never truly wanted to dip my toe into mainstream fashion, so I dabbled in travelling and then worked in travel which I loved. Working for an adventure travel company took me to some amazing corners of the globe and the corner that inspired Indigo Bazaar was Nepal. I was trekking to a mountain called Ama Dablam and while I was on this trek I knew that I wanted to do more than just visit their country, take some photo’s and move on. That trek struck a cord with me and after 4 years of dreaming of starting an ethical fashion business, I opened the doors to Indigo Bazaar dot com in July last year 2012.
2. What does ethical and sustainable clothing mean?
All the clothing we buy has a story, the main different with ethical fashion is it’s focus on creating empowering stories for the garment workers, giving them sustainable livelihoods, safe working conditions and allowing them to build a future and provide for their families. I guess you could say it’s going back to the good old days of fashion, where things were made well and made to last. Where people earnt a living wage for a good days work, and worked in safe working conditions.
Unfortunately somewhere through the era’s of fashion, the industry took a very sharp turn for the worst, and the demand for cheap fast clothing has created a fashion monster. Few industries in the world touch as many lives as the garment industry, so it is something we do need to educate ourselves on, ask questions at our local retailers and create a connection again with our clothing.
Ethical fashion also encompasses the use of sustainable fabrics and natural fibres such as organic cottons, silks, hemp – which is not so hippy anymore:-) – and dying techniques which no longer contain Azo’s and formaldehyde chemicals.
3. What are you 5 top tips for assist people in leading a more ethical and sustainable way of living?
1. Buy less and better quality. As consumers we do have the power to make a change.
2. If it seems to cheap to be true, it probably means the person who made it is getting a raw deal.
3. Ask questions at the stores you buy your clothing from, this is the best way to start change.
4. You need to fist assess what is most important to you and your lifestyle, whether it be eating more local produce, or riding your bike rather than jumping in the car, or buying a more expensive piece of timeless clothing that will last you many years compared to 5 cheap fashion fixes.
5. Read books and blogs and magazines such as Peppermint mag and Greenlifestyle mag which will really help you with your ethical and sustainable journey.
4. Food; If you had half an hour to cook dinner and realised you didn’t have anything planned, what would you cook?
I’ve spent quite a bit of time in Italy so it would have to be a classic easy pasta dish called spagetti alio e olio. Whch is basically olive oil in a pan, with crushed garlic. I add chilli flakes and cherry tomatoes halved to add a bit of extra flavour. If your feeling really adventurous toasted pine nuts is also nice on this dish. Once cooked add in al dente spaghetti to the pan with a little more olive oil, and serve with shavings of parmesan.
5. What’s your favourite juice or smoothie?
I’d probably say the Green Juice from Common Ground, so amazing and full of organic green goodness. I could almost drink the whole bottle in one sitting.
6. What is your favourite live by affirmation, mantra or quote?
‘Let him who would move the world, first move himself’ Socrates. This totally resonates with me at the moment. I want Indigo Bazaar to change the way people think about buying fashion, it’s a huge task, and each morning I wake up motivated to make this happen.
Lastly; Where can we find you?