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      Blog — environment

      7 Ways to Shop Sustainably this Black Friday

      7 Ways to Shop Sustainably this Black Friday

      If you’re interested in receiving exclusive Black Friday deals from Miik, be sure to subscribe to our email list today!

      We’re coming back to that time of year where virtually every company in the world offers major sales, and we all go CRAZY! That’s right, Black Friday is just around the corner.

      It’s an exciting, festive time of year and thousands of people will be taking advantage of the Black Friday deals. However, in the light of recent climate strikes, there’s no doubt that climate change is on people’s minds. We’re sharing some simple but effective ways you can be mindful of the environment during Black Friday this year! Let’s get into it. 

      Child in a crowd holding a painted sign that reads "Save the planet"

      Photo of the Toronto climate strike by @lewypee

      1. Shop eco-friendly brands

      Almost every eco-friendly brand—big or small—has Black Friday deals. It’s so easy to make a simple switch in who you’re buying from, and it can make all the difference. American author Anna Lappé says, “Every time you spend money, you're casting a vote for the kind of world you want.” If more and more people adopt this mindset, big companies will eventually start to take notice, feel the pressure and make some important shifts towards sustainability.

      Black script text on white reads "Everytime you spend money, you are casting a vote for the kind of world you want."

      2. Shop locally-made

      It is always better for the environment to shop locally because you can avoid additional shipping and therefore avoid excessive carbon emissions. It’s also so much nicer to receive a thoughtful, locally-made gift! Shopping local helps fuel your local economy and supports small businesses. When you shop locally, it's also more likely that the people who created the products were paid a fair living wage.

      Black handwriting on a pink background reads "When you buy from a small business, an actual person does a little happy dance"

      3. Shop less: don't impulse buy

      Ever gone on a shopping spree, and realized a week later that you didn’t really need (or even want) 75% of what you bought? That’s the power of the impulse buy. Just because something is a great sale, doesn’t mean you need it, or that you’ll wear it. And if you don’t love that purchase, it’s never worth the price—no matter how cheap! When it comes to apparel, we like to ask ourselves these questions before adding items to our cart: How often will I wear it? How will I care for it? Where was it made? What is it made of? How long will it last? How does it make me feel? Never buy something that won’t be worn or used!

      4. Look for energy efficient gadgets

      The best gifts are the ones that keep on giving. From rechargeable batteries to reusable sandwich bags, looking for ways to reduce everyday waste is great for our wallets and our landfills. Here’s a blog post with a handful of products to get your mind going. When it comes to technology items, read here for some products that would make great gifts for the holidays, or for your home! When you find products you’d like, make a list and shop intentionally over the Black Friday weekend rather than blindly heading into a website full of seductive deals.

      5. Gift wrap in reusable wrapping

      Save gift wrapping from events during the year and reuse it over the holidays, or use materials that might already be in your recycling bin. Think cardboard, newspapers, baskets, shoe boxes or paper. Paint it, stamp it, DIY it, and keep it out of our landfills for longer by giving it a new life!

      Rectangular package wrapped in burlap tied with twine and decorative red berries

      Photo from Stocksy

       6. Don't choose rush shipping

      Black Friday and Cyber Monday have blurred together now that everyone would prefer to shop from the comfort of their living room. One of the things we're cautious about (and don’t offer on our website) is express shipping. This causes lots of half-empty trucks to be on the road, driving longer distances to deliver packages. Choosing standard shipping and waiting just a little longer ensures companies can optimize their deliveries for fewer, fuller trucks making deliveries. It’s a small change we can all make, and it’s worth the wait!

      Cardboard shipping box marked "fragile"

       7. Look for carbon offsets

      We recently posted about our carbon offset checkout feature, and we would encourage you to look for this opportunity as you online shop on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Many brands have started adding it to help reduce your carbon footprint. We love this option: it’s a great way to give back and continue to be mindful of the earth as you shop.

      Screenshot of the Carbon Checkout app

      There are so many ways we can positively contribute to the environment during Black Friday. Miik will be participating in the festivities, as always! Be sure to subscribe to our email list for first access to all our amazing deals this year. Styles always sell quickly, so sign up and make sure you snag all your favourites!

       

      Offset your Carbon Footprint when Shopping Online

      Offset your Carbon Footprint when Shopping Online

      Woman in a blazer looking at a laptop

      Every time you make a purchase on our website, you have the opportunity to reduce your carbon footprint by adding a small donation to your order with Carbon Checkout. For every $1 dollar contributed, Carbon Checkout offsets 245 pounds of global greenhouse gas emissions that would have otherwise been released into the atmosphere. So far, just over 3% of Miik customers opt to offset their carbon footprint at checkout. We would love to see this number increase!

      Introducing Carbon Checkout

      Carbon offsetting funds different projects around the world that help reduce our carbon emissions significantly. Without additional funding from people like you and me, these vital projects can’t be completed. In addition to individually reducing our own carbon footprints, funding these projects helps to create a brighter, greener future. That’s what offsetting is all about.

      How to support carbon offset programs on your next Miik purchase

      It’s just three simple steps!

      1. Check the box next to “Give change to the environment.” It’s at the bottom of the screen during the checkout process. You can round up to the nearest dollar based on your order total, or select a different number from the dropdown menu.

      2. Your funds are invested in renewable energy projects to reduce carbon emissions.

      3. Track your emission reductions and view your portfolio by entering your verification code on the Carbon Checkout website.

      That’s it! Three easy steps and a very worthy cause: the future of our planet. These small changes in our everyday buying habits lead to big change. Collectively, a dollar can go a long way. 

      Leading up to Black Friday, Cyber Monday and the Holidays, we would like to remind you to be mindful in the way you purchase items and gifts, and encourage you to opt-in to offset your carbon footprint when it’s offered. We only have one planet, and we’re all responsible to take care of it!

      To a greener future, 

      Your Miik Team

       

      We Need a Fashion Revolution

      We Need a Fashion Revolution

      Who made my clothes?


      On April 24, 2013, more than 1,100 people were killed and many more were injured when Rana Plaza, an eight-storey building housing a garment factory, collapsed in Bangladesh. The event sparked worldwide discussion about the safety and wellbeing of garment industry workers and the conditions they are forced to endure. From this tragedy, Fashion Revolution was born and has since grown into a global movement to raise awareness of the social and environmental impacts of the fashion industry.

      The issues plaguing today’s clothing industry are numerous and complex. Exploitation of workers runs rampant, including everything from being forced to work in dangerous conditions, to working long hours with no breaks, unfair pay, child labour, intimidation and threats, and verbal and physical abuse. The environmental costs are also overwhelming, from the huge amounts of natural resources consumed, to the resulting pollution at all stages of production. Pesticides, toxic dyes, contaminated water, carbon emissions from production and transportation, disposal of garments in landfills—it has been suggested that the clothing industry is the second largest polluter in the world, surpassed only by oil.

      It sounds bleak—an unsurmountable challenge. How can we change such a complicated industry fueled by a global demand for fast, cheap clothing?

      During Fashion Revolution Week, we can focus on the first small step: transparency. The #whomademyclothes campaign encourages consumers to demand greater transparency from the brands they support. Knowing where and how our clothes are made is key to inciting change in the industry. When we know more about our clothes, we can make better, more informed choices about what we buy. When we choose clothing that is made fairly, it sends the message to all brands that we will not support social and environmental exploitation.

      This week, use the hashtag on social media to ask brands #whomademyclothes and show that you support a more open, fair, sustainable fashion industry. Visit the Fashion Revolution website and learn more about why we need radical change. And of course, follow Miik on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, where we’ll be responding with #imadeyourclothes and sharing more about the people behind our brand!

       

      How to style Miik

      How to style Miik

      Style, comfort, versatility – the three most important things we think about when designing our collections. Our aim is to create timeless pieces for your wardrobe that can be mix + matched, dressed up or down, and carried forward from season to season. Whether you’re a busy mom or a career gal (or both!), Miik meets all your wardrobe needs – from 8am school drop-offs, 3pm boardroom meetings to 7pm drinks with the girls.

      Here are some tips for how to get the most from your Miik pieces, and take your look from day to night:

      Reverse It

      For optimum versatility, we design many of our pieces with front-to-back reversibility. And because of the premium quality of our custom-milled luxury eco fabrics, our designs maintain their shape whichever way you wear it.

      Take the Kristen tailored zipper dress for example, this gorgeous dress can be worn with a scoop neck or reversed to expose the zipper for an edgier evening look.

       

      Our Ella striped v-dress can we worn casually with flats with the nautical stripe at the front, or reverse it for a classic LBD to be worn under a blazer for a corporate look. You can even put a blazer overtop with the stripes at the front for a pop of pattern.   

       

      Mix and Match  

      The accessories and complimentary clothing you pair with your Miik pieces can make an impact in the look and feel of your outfit. Your wardrobe doesn’t need to stay in specific categories (i.e. office, weekend, evening wear). You can mix and match pieces to find different looks to suit every occasion. 

      The Emily soft blazer is an essential wardrobe staple that need not be limited to the office. Pair it with jeans, capris or a dress for an effortless, yet put-together look, year round. The Emily is the most comfortable yet stylish traveling companion you'll ever own. 

       

      The April aline inverted pleat top features a tone-on-tone contrast between the smooth bamboo bodice and its textured linen sleeves. The added bonus – a linen inverted pleat for a party in the back. Wear this to the office with your favourite pencil skirt or dress pant, or dress it down with your favourite denim. 

      Show us how you style your Miik! Share your images on social media using #MiikStyle.

      Donna Smith: Q+A with Miik Co-Founder and Creative Director

      Donna Smith: Q+A with Miik Co-Founder and Creative Director

      Co-founder Donna Smith wears many hats here at Miik. She’s Creative Director, lead designer and also develops all of the creative materials and branded content. She also manages her own graphic design firm and is a mom of two daughters. Needless to say, Donna is a busy woman! Here she answers a few questions to give a glimpse into her design process and daily life.

      Where do you get your design inspiration?

      I get my inspiration from a variety of sources but travel is probably number one. Our last two trips to Turkey and Croatia were very inspirational for me. I love taking a design element from a dress hanging in an outdoor market in Istanbul and twisting it completely to work beautifully for Miik. And even better, seeing it become our top selling skirt for spring!

      On a daily basis, I will see someone on the street wearing something that catches my eye. It’s usually something I would never wear – nor would our customer – but I love the challenge of “Miik-ifying” that idea to become something unique, yet wearable.

      Other inspirations come to me out of nowhere. I am an insomniac so I get a lot of my best ideas in the middle of the night. Great for the collection but not so much for me!


      What does a regular day look like for you?

      I start the day with either strength training with Michael or a brisk walk. I work from home quite a bit but divide my time between client meetings for Visual Integrity and meetings and fittings downtown with the Miik team. My favourite part is seeing the collection come to life on the models. I love choosing the images, laying out the lookbook and editing the promo videos. I am trying hard to cut back my work schedule to have more of a work life balance. A year ago, I was working 8:00 am to 10:00 pm, including weekends. Now I am forcing myself to stop working after 7:00 pm. I’m not always successful, but doing better than before!

      What is it like working alongside your husband, Michael?
      Well, I'll be honest with you, we had a rough start! We each have very different ways of doing things. But after a few months, we worked it out. Now, I can't imagine not working with him. He is not the work horse that I am, but he is so smart and knowledgeable in so many areas, and is constantly coming up with brilliant ideas. We are both able to not take ourselves too seriously, and we laugh a lot. I was worried that Miik could take over our lives, but somehow, on the days I work from home, I still can't wait for him to get home.



       



        

      What do you love about Toronto?

      Michael and I find we are really starting to enjoy Toronto again. I think when our kids were young we were just so busy racing between activities. We’ve started going to see live music (The Cameron House has a different band at 6:00, 8:00 and 10:00 every weekend!), comedy shows and exploring the areas of Toronto we used to love before we had kids. We are so lucky to have such great selection of live theatre and concerts available in TO. We have been huge fans of Soulpepper for years.

      What is your favourite piece from the Spring/Summer 2016 collection?

      What an impossible question, there are too many! I always test the styles the summer before so how about I tell you what I ended up wearing the most? I absolutely love the Tansu skirt – it is so unique but so wearable and I got a ton of compliments. My favourite tunic is the Lesia – great as a coverup or with leggings, so versatile and forgiving. The most easy, comfortable wear-every-day dress is the Simone but my favourite party dress is the Larissa. I also wore the Wynona cardi a ton! Can I do that many?

      Do you have more questions for Donna? Let us know in the comments below!