Meet the Practically Perfect Encircled T-Shirt Dress

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You all know my love for Encircled. I’ve shared about them in at least five separate blog posts over the years and, more recently, have loved partnering with them the past few months to share some of their new releases and versatile classics.

If you need a quick refresher, here’s what I love about Encircled:

  • They’re based in Canada. (I’m not, but for all of my Canadian readers who ask me where to shop, here you go!) All of their production and sourcing happens as locally as possible (100% in Canada, which is amazing) and everything is cut and sewn in their studio in Toronto.

  • They’re B Corp Certified.

  • They focus on versatility and sustainability. As someone who lives in a tiny space with a tiny closet, I can’t say firmly enough that versatility MATTERS. Encircled’s pieces are designed with travel in mind, so almost all of them are able to be worn in multiple ways (we’re talking 5 or more for some of the most innovative garments like the Chrysalis Cardi and the Evolve Top).

  • They’re transparent about the struggles of owning an ethically minded business. I wrote in my Ethical Basics Guide that Kristi, the brand’s CEO and designer, shared with me a bit about how tricky it is to source fabrics that meet their high quality and longevity standards — if you’ve ever felt an Encircled garment before, you know what I’m talking about — and is gentle on the environment. They’re honest about when small compromises (like blending their fabrics with spandex) are necessary to achieve the final product they know will last women years and years.

  • They’re size inclusive. Their pieces fit sizes 00-20, which is a vast step above most brands who claim to include sizes for all.

  • Their pieces fit WITH your evolving body. Along with my Natural Edition tees, my Encircled tops and dresses were the only ones that comfortably fit me throughout my entire pregnancy. I know it’s unrealistic to expect the same piece to fit me when I’m my “normal” size and when I have a tiny human inside my torso, but I’ve been so pleasantly surprised that I can stretch my wardrobe with their help.

Which brings me to the real reason you’re all here…Encircled’s newly released Everyday T-Shirt Dress.

I was able to test the dress out a few weeks before it was released and, if I’m being completely honest here, I’ve already lost track of the amount of times I’ve worn it. The dress is intentionally oversized, so even at 9 months pregnant, it still fits with room to spare.

It’s another winner in the versatility department, which is why I’ve styled it several different ways in this post. My preference currently is to pair it with a pair of sneakers and a jacket, but it’s just as easy to dress it up with a pair of heels or clogs and some statement jewelry.

The Everyday T-Shirt Dress

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Features:

The dress is reversible — one neckline is a lower scoopneck and the other is a higher boatneck. It has two pockets with a mesh lining, so the pockets can easily reverse as well. It falls just above the knee and is meant to “skim your curves” and not hug them too tightly.

Fabric:

Made from Bamboo based Rayon which has lots of pros and cons sustainably-speaking, but on the pro side, it’s incredibly soft, stretchy, easy to care for, and long-lasting. It’s made without the use of pesticides in a closed loop-process (that you can read more about here). There are also drawbacks to using bamboo-based fabrics (which you can read about here), so I try to limit the amount of rayon that I own.

Fit:

I’m wearing a size Small in the Everyday T-Shirt Dress, which is the standard size I wear in Encircled. I could have sized down likely, for a tighter fit, but opted for this size so I was sure it would fit my baby bump and be comfortable postpartum.

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It’s truly a closet super hero and can multi-task right along with you and your lifestyle.

Shop the Everyday T-Shirt Dress in three colorways here (I’m obsessed with the Vintage Rose color!).

Use the code SIMPLYENCIRCLED for FREE SHIPPING and for all US/Canada orders from now until May 31, 2019!


*This post is part of a long term collaboration with Encircled. All opinions, photos, and creative direction is my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that keep SL&Co. running!*

Conscious Confessions: Is Ethical Fashion Too Expensive or Are Our Definitions Wrong?

Conscious Confessions: Is Ethical Fashion Too Expensive or Are Our Definitions Wrong?

Last week, I published the first "segment" of my Conscious Confessions about the different definitions of the word "ethical" and the (often hidden) fact that ethics and ethical shopping aren't a black and white area. Rather, they're a grey, mushy area full of opinions, and perspective, and history.

But that, I believe, is what makes the topic beautiful and worth learning about. 

This Conscious Confession series isn't planned or sponsored- rather, it's a reflection of issues and conversations that I see rising in the slow fashion community and want to dissect further in the "safe space" of my own blog. It's a place for discussion and thought and, maybe disagreement.

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Live the Give || Affordable Basics On A Mission To Educate

Live the Give || Affordable Basics On A Mission To Educate

What if I told you that a week of schooling for a child in a developing country was as cheap as the shirt on your back? Najat Murillo, the founder of Live the Give, has done the math (along with numerous other studies, so don't just take her word for it), and it's true. Although the price may seem small, the fact is that accessible, effective education is simply out of reach for many children in developing countries.

Echoing the words of Nelson Mandela when he claimed that education was the world's most powerful tool for change, Najat founded Live the Give on the simple premise that education matters and a closet staple can be a vessel for ushering in change. 

Read More

Liz Alig || Effortlessly Fair Trade

Liz Alig || Effortlessly Fair Trade

Effortless. Transparent. Slow. Fair. 

These are only a few of the words that Liz Alig uses to describe their business model. If there was a brand to value all aspects of ethical, sustainable, and slow fashion equally, they would be it. 

I first heard of Liz Alig very soon after my commitment to shop ethically well over a year ago. At the time, even with my limited knowledge of what ethical, sustainable fashion really was, I was impressed with their commitment to creating ethical fashion that was actually (gasp...) fashionable. Their designs are far from boring and are meant to be worn comfortably, in your real day to day life.

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Introducing Thought

Photo credit: Ian Warren** 

Photo credit: Ian Warren** 

thought

THôt/

noun

  1. an idea or opinion produced by thinking or occurring suddenly in the mind.

  2. the action or process of thinking.


A while ago in a social media post, I called Thought my "brand crush", although now, after wearing their pieces for a few weeks, interacting with the staff, and reading more in depth about the heart behind their brand, "crush" seems to be an understatement. 

The word "thought" is a bit all encompassing, and I believe the brand chose that word for their new moniker, with all of its depth and weight, with great intention. Although I've worked with a lot of amazing brands who I truly believe are practicing ethically and carefully, I've been impressed time and time again with truly how much thought goes into the work Thought does. 


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You might know them by another name, however. Since their founding more than ten years ago, the brand was known as Braintree Clothing. Known for their easy to wear designs and classic, ethically made pieces, Braintree was originally a menswear line that branched into women's clothing in 2005. 

They've been growing ever since and now, with their collections sold in over 1,000 stores worldwide and their online community reaching even further, Braintree has adapted a new name to encompass their ever-improving, ever-evolving brand. 

Everything, from their materials, to their packaging, to their curated blog on their website, to their interaction with their customers is thoughtful, designed to leave a positive impact on everyone their brand touches. And I can say from experience that they do. 

Thought is still a small business, despite their success. A team of only 20 people run the in's and out's of the brand from a collection of offices in North London. Inspiring — just like "brand crush" — is putting it lightly. 

Their newly released SS17 collection doesn't disappoint. In these photos I'm wearing the Irena tunic — a wool printed tunic that is thick, durable, soft, and incredibly comfortable, the Saskia hemp cropped cardigan in terracotta — a lightweight cardigan that feels delicate but still heavy enough to wear during chili weather, and the Annabel hemp knit top in terracotta — a lightweight sweater with gorgeous cutout detailing and slightly cropped sleeves.

This is only a small sampling of their new collection, however. Each piece is equally as beautiful and I have my eye on a few more to add to my Thought collection.

Thought uses fabrics that are as gentle to your skin as they are to the planet — primarily bamboo, hemp, wool, organic cotton, tencel, rayon and recycled polyester — and one touch of their clothing makes it obvious that a great deal of care went into creating it. Their motto of "wear me, love me, mend me, pass me on" is truly slow fashion (and slow living) at it's best.   

Photo credit: Ian Warren**

Photo credit: Ian Warren**

Wear me, love me, mend me, pass me on

Although it's safe to say that my "brand crush" is still going strong, I think my feelings have matured into a deep appreciation for their methods and a feeling of obligation to support and spread the word about the amazing work that Thought is doing. 

If creating an intentional, well-designed, curated wardrobe full of pieces you feel great in and can wear for years to come is your goal, let Thought be your new go-to ethical shop. They're truly changing the way fashion is done, and that is a mission worth supporting. 

***To get your collection started, use the code LIV10 for 10% off your entire order! (Offer valid on orders placed before April 24th 2017).*** 

*This post is sponsored by Thought. As always, all reviews are sincere and SL&Co. only promotes brands we've actually tried and love. Thank you for supporting the brands that make this site (and a conscious life) possible. 

**To see more of Ian's photography, check out his website here