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October 24, 2022

Sustainable Style

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LA-based sustainable stylist and founder of clothing brand CD Studio recently visited London for Fashion Week to soak up the work of the city’s emerging designers, check out innovative rental clothing platforms whilst staying at Treehouse London.

Cassandra Dittmer

What has brought you to London? LFW?

After a few years of not being able to travel, I wanted to indulge in travelling to London to be part of London Fashion Week, to soak up the creativity, energy and check out the emerging designers I have been admiring from afar. 

I also heard about the Treehouse hotel, and was really excited to stay at one of the most sustainable hotels in the city. 

What shows/brands were you most excited about? Why? 

There are so many amazing London-based designers and it’s a city that has always inspired me.  To name a few I love Richard Malone, Vivienne Westwood, Eudon Choi, Stella McCartney, & Marques Almeida.  These brands all encompass sustainability, craftsmanship and luxury. 

I was lucky enough to attend the Eudon Choi show- it was such a special moment, a real highlight of my trip. 

What is the best accessory to invest in long term?

You can’t go wrong with a classic handbag. In particular I’m loving the mushroom leather bags by Stella McCartney- proof that technology, innovation, style and sustainability can all work in harmony. When you invest in one piece, make sure to keep good care of it so you can enjoy it for years to come. My top tip is to use repair services such as The Restory, The Seam and Save My Wardrobe to keep your pieces in their best possible condition. 

Tips for trans-seasonal dressing? 

Layering! You don’t need to pack away all of your summer pieces just yet. Try your summer dresses paired with tights, boots, a sweater vest and a leather jacket. Or a chic thermal polo neck under your crisp cotton shirts for interesting texture and warmth. Have fun experimenting and finding new ways to wear your favourite pieces across the seasons. 

How do you address styling your clients in a sustainable way? 

Sustainability is not about going out and completely replacing your closet. Each consultation I host is totally bespoke and helps address the needs of each client, but there a few key elements that I always try to encourage:

  • Shopping your own closet is a great place to start. This could mean adjusting the hem of a maxi skirt to turn it into a mini, or re-soling your favourite boots, rather than buying new. Your wardrobe is often the first place we dig into. 
  • Try before you buy. There are so many great rental platforms out there to try out new brands, styles, shapes and colours to push your style boundaries, but without investing in one-hit wonders. By renting, you can see which pieces you want to invest in, and which are better suited to be worn once and then returned. 
  • Go vintage! Re-sale is a great option to find truly unique items with beautiful stories. Usually better for your wallet too! Whether in person at your local charity shop, or digitally using platforms such as Vestiaire Collective, Ebay and Depop to name a few. 

Ultimately, the goal of being a sustainable shopper isn’t perfectionism! It’s leading with an intention and effort, and taking small steps that in turn, will help to create the change we need. 

What made you get into sustainable fashion? 

After working as a stylist on the red-carpet for over 10 years and witnessing first-hand the negative effects that fashion can have on people and the planet, coupled with ever-increasing confusing greenwashing claims, I decided to turn my attention to helping as many people as possible shop more sustainably. I found myself often frustrated that conversations in fittings were only centred around aesthetics and not the ethos and ethics that each brand inherently stood for.  I launched an accessible, online styling service designed to help navigate the complex world of sustainable fashion. Open to all, and available to access from the comfort of your home. 

What are the best tips to a sustainable beauty regime? 

I have found myself digging more into the beauty world as a natural next step beyond just a wardrobe and into a holistic sustainable lifestyle. Like with clothing I prioritise natural and organic ingredients for my beauty products as well. It can feel overwhelming and unsettling to your skin to completely change your routine.  I prefer to swap products one at a time for a cleaner option and if it works just as well or better then I stick with it. I also consider packaging and prioritise compostable, re-fillable and plastic free packaging.  I also opt for reusable containers when travelling vs buying travel sized products to avoid single use plastic. I use a plastic-free, 100% metal razor and reusable cotton pads - take it one step at a time and consider integrating the next time you refill a toiletry item. 

At London Fashion Week, what are the go-to sustainable brands? Please include additional tips/tricks

My top London Fashion Week tip is definitely to rent! I had the best time playing  dress-up at MYWHQ in Harrods- it doesn’t get more glamorous than that. I also used ROTARO to borrow pieces from London based brand Eudon Choi and stopped by at Annie’s Ibiza on Carnaby Street which has some incredible vintage gems. 

I highly recommend using sustainable retailers such as Wolf & Badger, Maison de Mode and Reve En Vert who do an incredible job of curating the world's best brands according to ethics and aesthetics. 

What is the biggest misconception about sustainable fashion?

That sustainability means compromising on style. I love being able to share my network of incredible sustainable brands and under-the-radar independent makers with my customers and community, and share styling tips to help you look and feel great, and make your wardrobe go further.  My mission is to prove that luxury and sustainability can coexist. 

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