Summer style

Green Lifestyle

Check out these beautiful eco-friendly and fair trade accessories to help you breeze through the hottest months.


Clockwise from top left: Utiko beach towel, Good Luck Gifts' fair trade fans & hats, Sseko sandals, Uashmama's Senape Carry Bag, Etiko's FSC-certified thongs, Tote bag by Dharma Door.

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Bright sunshiny day
The lusciously bright Utiko beach towel would scare any overcast day away! Its 100 per cent organic cotton, made by Scandinavian textile company Marimekko. Renowned for its high-quality, stunning prints, the company aims to ‘create products that bring people joy for a long time and cause minimum environmental impacts’. Utiko beach towel, $135. www.marimekko.com

Like grass for elephants
Darwin-based store Good Luck Gifts offers stunning fair trade fans and hats to keep us cool this summer. They’re made from elephant grass that is hand harvested by the Frafra people of Northern Ghana, then soaked and stretched to produce a fine, soft yet strong fibre. Hats are $32 and fans $18 online or in store. There is no excuse to get hot and sweaty this season! www.goodluckgifts.com.au

Dignified souls
Grab a pair of the high-quality, beautiful sandals made by Ugandan company Sseko and you’ll be helping
to provide dignified employment to young women from impoverished backgrounds pursuing further education. They work throughout their gap year, and are then given access to social impact programs that ensure they earn enough income to finance university educations. Materials are ethically sourced from around Africa. You can even create your own sandals with a mix and match DIY pack. Available online from $49.95. www.ssekodesigns.com

Washable paper
Uashmama has given paper bags an extreme makeover. Sourcing virgin fibre harvested through cultivation not deforestation, paper is stretched and tanned. Originally made as waterproof, washable bread bags, there is now a vast array of sizes, colours and shapes. The Senape Carry Bag, pictured right, is the perfect fit for a towel, a good book and, of course, some chemical-free sunscreen! $89, www.uashmama.com.au

Winner, winner
Etiko has long been known for its fair trade sneakers, being the first non-food supplier to be accredited in Australia. The brand now has a line of thongs, and this product recently won a 2014 Green Lifestyle Award. Deemed ‘Thongs for Good’, these flip-flops are made using natural, recycled, Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC) certified rubber, and are produced under fair trade practices. A donation from each sale goes to The Wilderness Society, Surfrider Foundation, Save the Children or The Orangutan Project. $27.50, www.fairtradeshop.com.au

Bangladeshi beauty
Bangladesh has been under the spotlight for its widespread exploitation of workers, but we mustn’t lose sight of the incredible fair trade women’s co-ops that nurture ancient crafts and support whole communities. The Dharma Door works with some of these organisations and respectfully combines contemporary design with the traditional skills of the Bangladeshi women. There's a range of great big totes made from jute and lined with cotton, with prices starting from $55. www.thedharmadoor.com.au