From when she was a little girl, Sydney-based eco fashion stylist Faye De Lanty’s life has been influenced by her pursuit of a less cluttered, healthier planet.
Her interest in eco fashion, which is at the heart of her Fashion Hound website, was fired by her parents, especially her mother, Nadia.
“My Mumma is the High Priestess of preloved and DIY,” said Faye this week as she traced her journey to the top of eco fashion in Australia where she advises how to be fashionable and look fabulous without lashing out on top-of-the line trendy gear.
“Seriously, I don’t think there’s much that sweet lady can’t upcycle, recycle or reinvent,” she said, adding that her father, Mick De Lanty also had a passion for antiques and vintage fashion. “From a very young age I was always visiting antique stores, fairs and markets learning along the way that second hand never has to mean second best.”
This passion went from fun to function when she was living overseas in New York and London. “On a travel budget, thrift and charity shopping was genuinely all I could afford so I challenged myself to recreate what I saw in the pages of Vogue and on celebrities, with minimal spend,” she said. “Initially it was about saving money but I soon realised it could really be of service to the planet too, so I was hooked.” Fashion is the second most toxic industry in the world, behind to oil.
The former children’s show presenter of Network Ten’s Totally Wild is now an Ambassador for Salvos stores and appears regularly on Channel Nine’s Today Extra. Asked in which shops she found most of her clothes, Faye said sustainable shopping covered so many aspects…vintage, ethical, eco brands and DIY/upcycling just as a start. “I’m always at the Salvos but also love some of the vintage stores in my area like Fabrique Vintage and Zoo Emporium as well as eco brands I buy online like Lois Hazel.”
Faye, like most women, has clothes she “can’t live without”. These are her trench coat, white tee, black skinnies, vintage leather biker jacket and a Lois Hazel LBD.
One of Faye’s eco achievements of which she is particularly proud was her Eco-Wedding in December last year. “I just felt I wanted to walk the talk,” she said. “I thought that as I do it for my job so I should have the same approach in my life too and that can only be a good thing. I wanted to inspire people and set a precedent to show other brides it can be done.” The top three tips for making a wedding “ethical”, said Faye, was reuse, source from nature, find the right team.
From her dear friend Adrian driving her and her father to the ceremony, making her bridesmaid dresses with organic satin and dying them with onion skins and her mother saving leaves and flowers from her garden for a year to make biodegradable confetti, the wedding was an eco triumph. “It also taught Lee (my husband) and I to focus on what was really important. The whole process was so amazing, we learnt a lot. Such a Blessing.”
Asked what had been the biggest lesson she had learnt in life or business?, Faye answered “Self love first and never ever give up on your dreams”.