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The Importance of Ethical Fashion

The Importance of Ethical Fashion

Today, I wanted to discuss why ethical fashion is important.

In today’s society, you’ve probably heard claims that are rising in popularity, particularly about ethical fashion. Many companies, brands, and singular individuals are saying how necessary it is to support ethical companies, live sustainably, and become more eco-friendly.

If you’re new to this specific world, or have really only heard these things in passing, you may be wondering what it all means, and if it’s really important, or just another trend to follow. As a social entrepreneur myself, and being apart of a company full of Artisans, social entrepreneurs, and general do-gooders (being Mango + Moose), I can assure you that these things ARE important.

My family and I lived in Haiti from 2015-2017, and as a result, I was able to see the impact of supporting ethical and small business directly. It was actually because of our time in Haiti that we were incredibly inspired to create Mango + Moose in the first place. Haiti was beautiful, and also humbling, because our time there further taught both my family and I the importance of valuing simplicity, beauty, and most importantly – humanity.

The best way I can think to describe the importance of ethical fashion (on a personal level) is: when you shop at these nearly-monopolized stores, it is difficult if not impossible to see the impactor trust the goods were made in fairness to all. When you shop ethically, sustainably, and small, you often see and feel the impact. Business owner search out to say “thank you”. Small gifts are added to your purchase ingratitude. Social entrepreneurs share stories and pictures to their social media pages and emails to show how YOU, individually, have made a difference -both for them and their business as well as for the makers.

That’s not the only example of why ethical fashion is important, though. It goes beyond this and is much deeper. Ethical fashion is also important to support because it puts  big “NO” and “STOP” signs on ‘fast fashion’.

If you aren’t sure what fast fashion is, don’t worry, I’ll explain:

Fast fashion is essentially ‘trends’. It’s clothing that gets swapped in and out of stores within a months’ (or sometimes even weeks’) time. It’s clothing and accessories that often violate workers rights by forcing them to overwork, wastes water, overuses energy consumption, hurts the environment, and wastes materials to create items that will be worn a maximum of 2-3 times.

As you can see, it’s not a good thing.

And it’s been prevalent. Thankfully, more and more people are turning to ethical companies and purchases. You may be wondering what makes something ethical. Allow me to clarify:

Ethical fashion is a large term that can have many different purposes and elements, depending on the environment and company in which it’s produced. However, ethical fashion is essentially the protection and fair treatment of workers, their rights, as well as promoting their livelihood and sustainability. Ethical fashion also takes into account the environment, animals, water, and waste – usually attempting to do no harm to them. Ethical fashion promotes environmental awareness, worker and farmer safety, and is (in my personal opinion) how the fashion and accessory industry SHOULD be run.

After all, we only have this planet that is inhabitable right now, right? So why not take care of it and its inhabitants? That’s my philosophy behind supporting ethical fashion; I believe it’s the future of the next generations.

Plus, there is beauty in sentiment – reaching for a bracelet that I know was handcrafted by a talented Artisan based in Kenya and knowing I’ve supported both their craft and livelihood, rather than something that is flimsy and plastic from a big box store.

I think it’s incredibly important to consider our actions as consumers. Take a deeper look at where we are purchasing from, what we are purchasing, and (if possible) the values, environment, as well as ethics of these companies; what we find my be surprising and call for change.

If you would like to start supporting ethical fashion + accessories but are not sure how, please consider taking a look at Mango + Moose. Our ethical and sustainable fashion, as well as Fair Trade Practices and support of artisans, will definitely inspire you.

Thanks for reading! Remember: BE the change you wish to see!

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The Best Gifts to Give this Holiday Season

The Best Gifts to Give this Holiday Season

At Mango + Moose, we know how important the holidays are. They’re the perfect time to spend cozied up and drinking hot cocoa with your family members, loved ones, and friends. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or none of the above (and celebrate alternatively), there really is no better time of year to enjoy festivities and spend time with those you care for.

With the holidays, we also know they’re a time of gifts: giving, exchanging, and receiving. This can be a little stressful, especially when shopping for those who have seemingly everything. In North America, where Mango + Moose is primarily located, many people have an abundance (if not an overabundance) of material possessions. It can be difficult to know what to gift someone who is either hard to shop for, or you can’t think of much they’d want (or need). 

With that being said, we’ve compiled a list of the best gifts to give this holiday season. 

The best part about this list? It can be a wonderful way to connect with your family members, friends, and loved ones who you *do* want to give gifts to, but also provides opportunities to help your community to your fullest capacity. Without further ado, let the gift ideas flow! 

Gift #1: Something They’ll LOVE from Mango + Moose

What could be better to give than a handmade artisan gift? With over 15+ categories of items to choose from, you can head over to our site and browse for something your loved one will love. We have TONS inventory from different countries, with a variety of  products from accessories, home, bags, kids + baby items, and more! 

Gift #2: Donations to Causes You Support

For the person (or people) in your life who have everything, consider donating in either your or their name as a gift to them. This can be to causes you both support or they support; it’s a wonderful gift for people who have everything or can be difficult to shop for. Not only are you giving them a gift, but you’re also giving your community a gift, too!  

Gift #3: Volunteer Your Time + Connect with Loved Ones!

Volunteering is a GREAT way to give back, and to spend time with someone (or people) you love. Volunteer your time at a local food bank, soup kitchen, shelter, or anywhere else your time and help would be valued. 

Gift #4: Experiences

As society leans more and more towards simplicity and minimalism, experiences can be the perfect gift to give this holiday season! To give you some ideas of experiences you can gift, think: movie tickets, tickets to a museum, gallery, or exhibit, a hot air balloon ride, coffee or food gift cards, sports (ice skating, rock climbing, bowling, etc.), or even a massage or facial.

Gift #5: Something You Can Do Together

This can be as small as a boxed puzzle or something bigger, like a trip you can take together or as a family/group. Giving the gift of doing something together can be a great way to not only connect, but also adventure!

No matter what gift you give this year, we’re sure it’ll be perfect! If you do decide to purchase material items for the holidays this year, try to keep in mind the importance of shopping small, ethical, and sustainable! Small steps or actions towards socially and environmentally conscious living really *do* make all the difference.

Thanks for reading, and Happy Holidays from the Mango + Moose Team! 

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"WHERE ARE MY KEYS?!" A Quick Tip to an Organized Tote

"WHERE ARE MY KEYS?!" A Quick Tip to an Organized Tote
There is nothing worse than scrummaging around your big bag looking for your keys in an ocean of cosmetics, papers, and products, dropping your favourite lip gloss and just hoping that you can pull a magic trick by swooping it up the first time. I know even in my smaller bags they can be little oceans of stuff I can’t seem to keep altogether. Well here’s what I do to make that problem not a part of my busy schedule.
I use the bag within a bag technique, it’s like tabs for your web browser keeping your daily items in check. I grab smaller bag about the size of a make up bag or pencil case and I use that for all my lipglosses, gum packs, headphones, extra hair ties, and my favourite pen. This is your bathroom run in a bag, it is that quick concealer or comb for your hair. I know my essentials are in that small little bag. This bag has allI need for a freshen up. Secondly I have my latte run bag I keep this for that exactly so I can just grab that instead of my whole bag. Yes ladies, another a bag within a bag! This time I have a little change purse, a little notebook and pen and my car keys, I keep my keys especially in this one bag because otherwise they are everywhere!  I love this little trick as it makes having all you need with you, while keeping it together in compartments. Grab a clutch sized cloth bag with a zip like this tassel satchel and give it a whirl!
ethical fair trade gifts canada tote

Personally I use Mango and Moose’s Guatemala Tassel Satchel and slide that into my favourite Raw leather tote. In Mango and Moose’s Fall/ Winter collection they have this beautiful raw leather hide bag. It’s gorgeous and perfectly imperfect showcasing it’s little imperfections with class. As it wears it just get’s softer and better. Anyways, as a tote, so it has room for lots of stuff, but it needs some organization to make it practical.

These days with our wallets on our phones, and parking meters on apps, we don’t have much need for all the stuff we used to, but if you do need some things with you this is the way to go and keeps you from fishing in the ocean of a tote to get your most needed goods. So try it out grab your tote fill it up in an organized way and love your everyday.

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Taking a Stylish Weekend Away

Taking a Stylish Weekend Away

On a weekend away I bring only my favourites – the simplest go-to confidence inducing pieces. Inside my bag you’ll find plenty of neutrals, my best curve hugging jeans, my favourite trendy knit sweater or cardigan and I’m ready to go. The defining factors of my favourites are always CONFIDENCE AND COMFORT! I don’t want to spend time thinking about putting together the perfect outfit; I want to go and be free from the critical puzzle-piecing my brain does all week. Relax into my favourite picks.

My jewelry essentials are simple. I always throw in my gold bangle. It’s a sure way to dress up any black blouse. I prefer gold over silver, but everyone has their preference! Earrings? I like to bring my midnight sparkle studs, which I wear on most days because HELLO black and gold people!!! They are an obvious choice of chic and glam together. For me there is always time for a tasteful amount of sparkle.

fair trade products canada earrings

Clothing wise I always have my favourite jeans, a pair of Levi’s high-waisted dark wash, and pair of black denim. On top I always have a baggy white t-shirt that can be worn with jeans or leggings. I can dress up or down using my blushing tassel earrings or just studs and a jean jacket. I always like to have a black and white stripe with me, and a blouse for a night out. It’s easy to accessorize these neutral outfits, and I know I feel good and look good.  Add in my sparkle flats or mahogany booties, throw on a jean jacket and I’m ready to hit the town.

If I’m spending my weekend at the lake cabin, you’ll catch me wearing just leggings and an oversized plaid, which requires little to no packing – just pure pyjama bliss. More commonly on the weekends though, you’ll find me in the city with my fiancé exploring around town. By day find me cozied up in an eclectic coffee shop wearing my pom pom scarf. Bustling families walk by as we sip slow, quietly read, enjoy fresh baked goods and savour silent moments. Then at night you’ll see me style up for date night with my blushing tassel earrings and leather jacket.

A weekend away is what most of us need. Taking time to rest and explore new things is truly what living is all about. Make sure to take time for yourself instead of doing the 9 to 5 hustle till you drop. Pack that suitcase with your favourites, take a night out, try some new food, live your life authentically, and shop ethically to ensure you make a meaningful impactful.

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