Wonderful things can happen when an ethical fashion blogger decides to create her own dress line. Hanna Baror-Padilla just wrapped up a very successful Kickstarter campaign for her label Sotela. Her experience as a blogger gave Hanna an understanding of what she wanted for her own line, local and ethical manufacturing using Eco-friendly fabrics. She also knew exactly the kind of dresses she wanted to create, "the last dress you’ll ever need".
Having struggled with the incredibly common closet full of clothes and nothing to wear conundrum, she wanted pieces that fit our ever-changing bodies. Most of us know the feeling of trying on half the contents of our wardrobe, just to find an outfit that feels comfortable at certain times of the month (or day). Whether its bloating, pregnancy or just a big meal our bodies are constantly yo-yoing up and down. Hanna wanted to create pieces that work regardless of your size, a go to when nothing else feels right.
The resulting dresses are now available for pre-order on her website. The Shift dress is a square cut that hits just above the knee, with a slightly longer back hem. Constructed from 100% Tencel twill, this Eco fabric is made using the natural cellulose found in wood pulp, harvested from sustainable tree farms. Tencel is anti-bacterial, biodegradable and the manufacturing process is done with a closed loop system which recycles solvents and cuts down on water usage. The Cocoon Dress is made using the same fabric but is cut a bit longer and has a more billowy shape. Lastly is the Jersey Swing Dress, an A-line cut with elbow length sleeves, constructed using a Modal fabric blend. Modal is also derived from wood; it comes from renewable beech trees.
I was thrilled to get to play dress up with one of Sotela’s samples. Having been introduced to Hanna through the Ethical Writers Coalition, she sent me the Cocoon Dress to give it a go. The dress is incredibly comfortable, soft and easy to wear. An extra plus, the prices are very reasonable. I hope you enjoy the looks I created below.
* Note not all the items included in my outfits are American made which is why I provided alternative options. I used pieces from my own closet which is a mix of USA made, second hand, vintage, ethical brands and items from before I changed my own shopping practices.