The Thoughtful Shopper: wildflower-inspired fashion, the perfect summer flats and eco intimates

Your guide to July’s best sustainable fashion buys from Irish and international designers

Aoife McNamara’s latest season collection Bláth Fiáin is inspired by Irish wildflowers and is sustainably produced in collaboration with local textile producers using recycled and regenerative materials

Bows on Show

Oversizes bow flat pumps, €220, available exclusively at Brown Thomas on Grafton Street or online at

Valentino’s Haute Couture show in Paris last week opened with what could possibly be the shoe of the season: a pair of flat bow mules. And as if Irish designer Nicki Hoyne could have predicted the desire for the function-first flats, she created her very own. Launched exclusively at the Brown Thomas CREATE 2023 initiative, the limited edition oversized bow flats come in a metallic silver and an alligator-embossed green – and both are adorned with a big, delicate bow. Hoyne’s label was recently named as the coveted ‘Best New Brand’ at this year’s Drapers Footwear Awards in London, and her sustainability efforts see her work only with master crafters in Spanish factories that are Leather Working Group (LWG) certified.

Eco Intimates

Coral blue wrap bra, €36, and high-waisted underwear, €19,

We love when we happen upon a new, innovative Irish brand disrupting the fashion space and making its sustainable mark. Our latest to uncover is Dublin designer Siobhan Dunphy’s underwear brand Bon + Berg. Offering all the shapes and styles you could ever possibly need for your intimates, all Bon + Berg pieces are crafted from a super-soft material called Micro Modal. This fabrication is produced using a complex purification process, in which wood chips from responsibly-harvested beech trees are converted into cellulose, which is later woven into a luxurious fabric.

Sustainable Strides

Irish customers can now shop Salsa Jeans’ collection of slim, straight, and wide leg cuts and each style runs from a size 25” to 40” waist, with prices ranging from approximately €75 - €110

Fans of the popular Portuguese denim brand Salsa Jeans will be pleased to hear that it has opened its first standalone store in Ireland. Unveiling a flagship shop in Liffey Valley in Dublin 22 (just off the M50), the store features its well-established denim collection in a variety of fits and washes, as well as recent updates like its latest womenswear, footwear, and accessories collections. While denim is notoriously resource-heavy, Salsa Jeans has been actively making changes: in 2021 it committed to its ‘Betterwash’ initiative which uses 58 per cent less water in its production process, while its Infinity programme offers a repair and recycling scheme.

Rewilding Fashion

Rose co-ord satin trousers, €190, and blazer, €420,

An established name in the Irish sustainable fashion scene, Aoife McNamara’s latest season collection is a true force for good. The 12-piece collection called Bláth Fiáin is inspired by Irish wildflowers (McNamara ordinarily draws inspirations from native nature) and it is sustainably produced in collaboration with local textile producers using recycled and regenerative materials, such as naturally-dyed Irish linen and Irish wool. We have our eye on the Rose co-ord satin trousers and puff-sleeve blazer – consisting of McNamara’s signature bow and voluminous sleeve detail with a generous summer’s update.

Bag It

Le coquillage silver crochet bag, €290,

Maison de Mode has been a trailblazer in the sustainable luxury fashion scene since its inception. Founded in 2012 by Hassan Pierre and Amanda Hearst, the New York-based online apparel and accessories store focuses on ethical design that supports local businesses and marginalised communities, is cruelty-free, organic, and often crafted using recycled materials. Its selection of summer handbags are particularly tempting, like this silver crochet shell bag that is handworked with pearls and glass beads. And to seal the brand’s sustainability credentials, it's certified by the Butterfly Mark – a globally recognised symbol that awards luxury lifestyle brands for their commitment to the planet and its people.