Lovingly made by its head woman, Kitty McEntee, Lab Tonica creates hand-made botanicals for everyday wellness. From plant-powered teas and room sprays to calm and soothe our noisy heads, and balms filled with gentle waxes and essential oils, there is a range for every concern and swing of the moods.
The brand aims to step lightly on the earth’s resources and only use the very best plants and herbs that can be sustainably sourced, from each spray of room fragrance to every daub of balm, your ingredients are traceable and packaging fully recyclable, even the plastic bags are in actuality, corn starch!
I had the pleasure of meeting Kitty and exchanging our similar ideas on the importance of beauty being a little more conscious of the planet, after all a soothing cup of tea is so much more relaxing when you can be sure it’s doing both your body and the planet good.
Last week in London, I came across a new pop-up shop that was just up my street! The Regent Street Edit features a unique spread of brands, all with sustainability and a low carbon footprint at their centre. This particular edit has been brought to us in partnership with The Crown Estate and Westminster City Council.
Just inside these double doors is a myriad of independent companies from multi-cultural custom fashion brands, to beauty and herbal health, including Lab Tonica, 4649.REC, Petit Pli, LR. D studio, Buttress & Snatch and Saywood Studio. I had the pleasure to meet some of the business people behind the brands, to really find out where the brand ideas came from and even to purchase a few products of my own!
So whatever it is you’re yearning for, whether that’s a herbal tea to soothe the mind, a custom outfit for that special event, or a fashion-fun lingerie set, you can find it at the Regent Street Edit.
This groundbreaking textiles company was founded in 2017 by aeronautical engineer, Ryan Mario Yasin. By applying and also inventing material technologies, Petit Pli is able to solve problems not only for businesses but growing families and even our planet from the waste of the textiles chain.
These clothes were first designed when the founder’s nephew quickly outgrew clothes he had only just be bought. Children grow so quickly that their clothes need to stretch with them.
Petit Pli’s mission is to apply technology to fashion, saving yards of material, as well as adding years of use to a single garment. Much like an accordion, the recycled fabric is pleated to fit not only growing children, baby bumps and the unique shapes of our faces for face masks.
This reduces the carbon footprint and water waste that goes into clothing production.
Butress & Snatch
Buttress & Snatch have been handcrafting and designing bespoke lingerie since 1999, among their clientele, are Madonna, Kate Moss, Beth Ditto, Neneh Cherry and Kate Upton. Since then its founder, Rachel Kenyon, has taken the company into custom-made ready to order pieces, where the customer decides the look and feel of her undergarments and Rachel and her team design a piece that shows off the client’s unique body type and personal sense of style.
Each piece is custom made in the companies workshop in Hackney, by a group of talented and ultra-creative seamstresses, with materials found locally all over the UK.
The Good Neighboor
This wonderful menswear brand only joined the Regent Street Edit in mid-November, standing in the place of Buttress and Snatch. They offer an array of clothes from knitwear sourced in England to flannel and woollen hats, all made and designed to last at affordable prices.
Most of The Good Neighbours garments are crafted from existing stock or end of role fabrics that would have been thrown away. But most impressive of all is how they are creating more sustainable jeans, a process that involves washing and drying multiple times, all of which wastes many tonnes of water. The Good Neighbours sources the material from the BDA Denim factory as well as removing all chemical sprays and stone washing from their process, using laser technology and ozone-washing.
I for one fancied plenty of the clothes for myself, as you can never go wrong with ‘finely made and no brocade’.
4649.REC was whisked up by the creative Yumi Sakaki, who has made a name for herself reconstructing her mother’s exquisite kimono’s, and utterly transforming them into quirky streetwear, couture dresses, graceful wedding gowns, fashionable face masks and even scrunchies.
In Asian culture, Kimono’s are worn for special occasions and passed down in families with memories and moments in each stitch. Over lockdown Yumi spoke to her mother on zoom, unpiecing the tradition and significance of each piece before it was stitched back together to be a living memory for another wearer.
Yumi’s designs mesh with her love of hip hop and her love for the tradition and vibrancy of her roots.
LR. D first caught my attention from the shine of the beautiful materials they use, each dress, blouse or pair of trousers, look as if they have been fashioned from silk, but in fact, it is Naia, a blend of pine and eucalyptus. Lily-Rose, the companies founder, has studied and researched the best materials and places to source the companies components, from the mother of pearl button sourced from the Japanese fishing industry to producing the textiles in mills that use less water consumption.
LR. D inspires a smaller and more eco-conscious wardrobe for women that can shift from office day dressing to elegant evening wear with the unhooking of a few buttons.
Saywood Studio is a contemporary women’s brand that focuses on classic and timeless pieces to be worn over and over again.
The brand’s founder Harriet Saywood-Bellisario created Saywood in 2020 and began her focus on creating capsule wardrobes for each season, in which a single garment is a focus, for example, shirts. I thought this was a fantastic way to break down the fashion shopping into sections, clothes you might need and outfits you can complete.
The collections are small but built upon quality pieces full of colour and longevity in the wardrobe. Where possible the garments are made locally and comprised of sustainable fabrics.