World Environment Day: Island Fashion

BY Green Stilettos / Jun 05, 2014


Today is World Environment Day, and this year’s theme is islands! Besides being sought-after destinations thanks to their outstanding natural beauty, islands are home to diverse and creative cultures. To celebrate World Environment Day in style, here are some great examples of green-and-glam fashion from around the world – some that come from island nations and some that are inspired by islands.

So stretch out on a lounge chair, put on some reggae music and catch the island vibe!

Pons Avarcas sustainable sandals

Fusing culture and fashion with family-run business ethics, Avarcas is a well-known Spanish footwear brand that comes from the island of Menorca. Originally designed for Menorcan workers, the shoe has become a part of the island’s identity. The Avarcas sandal is hand made from leather and rubber to be strong, flexible and comfortable. Pons Avarcas, the updated fashionable version of the traditional sandal, combines traditional craftsmanship with the latest technology.

Pons Avarcas sandals come from the Spanish island of Menorca. Photo via Avarcas USA.

Pons Avarcas sandals come from the Spanish island of Menorca. Photo via Avarcas USA.

Lonali – ethical fashion from Sri Lanka

With it’s massive apparel manufacturing industry, Sri Lanka is home to some of the largest factories in the region. Based in the Sri Lankan capital Colombo, Lonali brand founder and designer Lonali Rodrigo scavenges through fabric, trim and thread waste in industrial plants around the country and lovingly transforms these unwanted luxury textiles, trims and clothing into stunningly original wearable art. Lonali won the 2010 Ethical Fashion Award.

Lonali designs featured in the You Turn poster campaign (2010).

Lonali designs featured in the You Turn poster campaign (2010). Photo via

Island Inspired Doctor Handbags

After attending the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, designer Annemarie Hereford was captivated with the idea of using fabric as a medium for art. At the same time, she did not wish to contribute to the wastefulness of the fashion industry. On a visit to a thrift store, she had her big idea: “I saw all these (clothes) not as past trends and fashion faux pas, but as new materials.” Made from  recycled and scrap leather, her Doctor Handbags collections include many island-inspired creations like this beatiful Sea Wench bag – just perfect for your beach essentials.

Sea Wench bag from Doctor Handbags. Photo via

Sea Wench bag from Doctor Handbags. Photo via

Mar y Sol fairtrade accessories from Madagascar

In 2003, Laurel Brandstetter traveled to Madagascar to build on a community development effort initiated by a relative. She met with dozens of artisan groups who had a vision of making their products available in the global marketplace. Collaborating with designer Elizabeth Randlett, Laurel and the Mar Y Sol team have built an accessories brand recognized for its unique designs, exquisite craftsmanship and creative use of sustainable materials.

Mar y Sol beach bag. Photo via

Mar y Sol beach bag. Photo via

Save Goat Islands T-shirt from Jamaica

The final entry comes from Jamaica, and it can actually help save Goat Islands just off Jamaica, part of the Portland Bight Protected Area, from becoming a massive shipping hub. Portland Bight is Jamaica’s largest protected area that is home to corals, mangroves and many unique and threatened species. Last year the government  announced Goat Islands as the site for a future port despite UN studies showing that these ecosystems are worth millions of dollars every year as nurseries for fish and carbon sinks. You can support the No Port on Goat Island campaign by wearing a Save Goat Islands T-shirt, yours for just $15 from

Save Goat Islands T-shirt on save via

Save Goat Islands T-shirt on save via



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