If you need a little nudge to get your eco-ethics in line, Nicole Bridger Design’s latest socially conscious collection, Unconditional Love, promises to be your moral compass. Soft pieces, such as the Hope dress, Faith skirt and Belief tunic, are lovingly fashioned from certified organic cotton that’s tinted with low-impact dyes.
Before she created her eponymous line, Bridger interned under Brit-punk fashion pioneer Vivienne Westwood. “She was really about her anarchist movement and making a change for the people, and that really resonated with me,” says Bridger, who launched Oqoqo’s first eco-friendly fashions, and later struck out on her own.
“Each collection is about a life lesson I’m going through. That’s where I get my inspiration from,” says Bridger, whose most recent partnership – marriage – influenced the Unconditional Love line. Bridger is devoted to this new collection of wearable foundation pieces with unfussy stripes and muted hues designed to reflect the casual West Coast ethos.
But there’s a hint of romance, too: unexpected gathers of fabric give the pieces movement, marrying comfort with design. The clothes are easy on the eyes and the fabrics are gentle on the planet. Who wouldn’t love these pieces – unconditionally?
Homage to the environment
“Structured chaos overwhelmed my senses,” says Leanne McElroy, the creative force behind Elroy Apparel, describing how a road trip through the canyons of Arizona inspired her spring collection. “There were uniform layers, linear textures, and high-contrast erosion details. All the peaks in the canyon were similarly flat-topped, yet each one was substantially different from the other.”
Environmental inspiration and awareness are the focus behind Elroy Apparel, a company that takes a stand against environmental destruction by creating an eco-alternative for the fashion-forward: “a beautiful garment with an even more beautiful story behind it.”
McElroy’s homage to the environment is seen in the use of 100-per-cent-biodegradable bamboo fabric as her canvas of choice. Her spring collection of dresses, jackets, jumpers, and skirts is as diverse and dramatic as the desert scenery. Subtle nuances, like the landscape’s curves and fissures, are artfully rendered with seams and pin tucks, while dramatic details take shape as statement-making collars and upturned hems. Even the fabrics reflect the Earth’s raw palette of black, white, cream, olive, and flame-red tones.
Nicole Bridger Designs at Twigg & Hottie in Vancouver.
Elroy Apparel at Nouvelle Nouvelle, Riot, and Shop Cocoon in Vancouver.