20
    Apr
    2018

    Must-Have Vegan Handbag : Labante London

    “We want to give consumers the experience of luxury, of the finest craftsmanship, of a timeless aesthetic, while respecting the world we live in.” -Labante London

    You all know that I live for a luxury vegan handbag!  British brand Labante London delivers just that, with all animal-friendly selections for any occasion.  They are eco-friendly, using recycled materials for the lining, tags, and dust bags, as well as green production processes.  Labante London meticulously vets their suppliers and factories, ensuring that they each carry an SGS certification and pay ethically and fairly.  Additionally, Labante London gives 10% of proceeds to charity.  Consider me a loyal customer, as this is exactly the type of fashion brand I seek to support in 2018.

    vegan handbag labante london

    seen here: Sylvaine Hobo Handbag… how great are the hand-crafted butterflies?!  (***if you use this link to purchase any of their bags through their Amazon Shop, you will get 15% off, good until May 8th!!!)

    I recommend checking out their Amazon shop first– since you can save 15% off using my link– to shop their clutches, handbags, backpacks, and more.  If your dream bag isn’t there (unlikely), head to their website for more.

    Love you guys!  Thank you for shopping ethically! 

    vegan handbag labante london

    5
    Apr
    2018

    Let’s Talk: Vegan Prenatal Vitamins!

    Since announcing our pregnancy, I’ve gotten more questions than ever before asking me about supplements (read my previous post on regular, everyday supplements I’ve taken and recommend here), as well as vegan prenatal vitamins.  To be honest, a vegan pregnancy has not been any different, to my knowledge, than a non-vegan pregnancy.  At 30 weeks, I’ve gained 19 lbs, which is totally on track.  My OB was completely unfazed by my strict vegan diet and lifestyle (if you’re in Dallas, I highly recommend Dr. Amy Martin), even when I was a BIT low in vitamin D (Americans in general tend to be low in D, but vegans and vegetarians can be slightly more susceptible to low values).  She and her team helped find me vegan prenatals so that baby River and I can go on to have the healthiest pregnancy possible.  Ready? Let’s go!

    {Ps: If you want details on the fashion pictured, scroll down to the end!} 

    vegan prenatal vitamins

    Every day since the beginning of my pregnancy, I have taken 3 supplements:  a) Rainbow Light’s “Prenatal One,” b) Source Naturals’ “Vegan Omega-3s Non-Fish EPA-DHA,” and c)Renew Life’s Ultimate Flora Probiotic.  I’ll discuss each briefly below.

    I want to note that I had very minimal morning sickness compared to most of my friends– and I am honestly not sure whether that had anything to do with the prenatal I used.  I do know that some brands are more easy on the tummy than others.  Anyway, my vegan prenatal has the folic acid and other nutrients you need for your developing baby and has worked perfectly for me without upsetting my stomach.

    My Omega-3 DHA supplement is to help with River’s brain development. It is somewhat difficult to find a non-fishy source of EPA and DHA, and this supplement seems far superior to trying to get your values via flaxseed oil.

    The Flora Probiotic is really helpful all the way through your pregnancy, because your hormonal changes will make you much more vulnerable to vaginal and yeast infections– which are not only annoying and uncomfortable for you, but can potentially pose a threat to your baby– and this will definitely help offset these issues and bring balance to your nether regions. Most of the ones I looked at were not 100% vegan, so I was happy to find this one.


    Near the middle of my pregnancy, I was told that my vitamin D was lower than recommended.  So, at my nurse’s urging, I began taking 2000 I.U. of vegan vitamin D with my lunch.  This will help make sure that River is growing strong, healthy bones, and also supports mama maintaining a healthy blood pressure. Some studies show that it helps prevent gestational diabetes as well.  So I take these just about every single day, and have since week 20.


    Once I hit the third trimester (home stretch!!!) I began integrating a vegan calcium supplement into my daily routine.  Your baby’s skeleton is rapidly developing at this point in your pregnancy, and you need a bunch of extra calcium.  “The fetal skeleton gets what it needs, no matter what, even if it has to leech essentials from its mother’s bones,” says Murray Favus, MD, director of the bone program and professor of medicine at the University of Chicago.  Needless to say, when I read that quote I knew I didn’t want my bones being leeched, so I started researching exactly how much calcium you need in the third trimester vs. how much your prenatal offers, if any + the calcium that is already in your daily diet. I decided I wanted about 1,200 mg of calcium daily.  It turned out I needed a lot of calcium, even though I do eat vegan sources such as nuts, beans/lentils, and tofu; so I got Rainbow Light’s Everyday Calcium (vegan tablets) and have been taking them with dinner every night. 

    vegan prenatal vitamins

    So, that’s it, folks!  5 supplements total, every day now that I’m at the end of my pregnancy.  My labs have been perfect ever since starting the vitamin D, and I feel good (well, I feel tired. Haha. But generally, I feel healthy and like I’m building a pretty big, strong baby).

    Please let me know if you have any questions at all about vegan pregnancy, prenatals, or anything else for that matter!  I’m here to help!

    xoxoxo

    M

    Fashion Deets:

    Ethically-made dress (not maternity, but it works perfectly with the bump!): From eco/ethical boutique Rêve En Vert… But I just looked and this particular dress is sold out.  However, I did find it ON SALE for 30% off here.

    Organic, cotton tote bag made by displaced women artisans: On major, major sale, at ethical fashion boutique Love Justly

    My go-to, every-day-of-my-life-sunglasses:  I swear these are said to be sold out everywhere BUT I found them here for you, and on sale!!

    29
    Mar
    2018

    My Dogs’ Homemade, Vegan, “Special Food” Recipe!

    Hi friends!

    A few of you who watch my Instagram stories have requested that I find a permanent place to keep my recipe for my special, “gourmet,” vegan dog food.   So, here it is, for your reference, any time!

    In addition to be super nutritious and delicious (yes I’ve tried it myself and it’s actually GREAT), this recipe works well for picky eaters, and also just to supplement your dog’s typical, everyday dry food (in my case, V-Dog brand). Whenever I board my dogs, I drop trays of this “special food” off with them as a treat, and it has helped them immensely with their separation anxiety– because they have learned to associate going to the boarders with getting their delicious “special food!”

    You’ll need:

    • 3 sweet potatoes
    • 1 cup long grain rice
    • 1 cup quinoa
    • 1 cup lentils
    • 1 jar of natural peanut butter (please make extra sure it contains no xylitol, as some “low fat” versions are starting to emerge with this ingredient, and it can be deadly to dogs!
    • OPTIONAL: nutritional yeast, coconut oil

    Directions: 

    • Boil 6 cups of water in a large pot
    • While waiting for water to boil, slice up the sweet potatoes into 1 inch cubes or chunks… add them to the pot
    • Add the rice, quinoa, and lentils
    • Once water is at a full boil, reduce heat to “low” and let simmer with a lid on, stirring occasionally, for about 40 minutes… Add more water as needed
    • Once the potatoes are soft and mushy and the water is all soaked into the mixture, remove from heat.  Use a fork to help stir and mash up the potatoes.
    • Add the whole jar of peanut butter to the pot.  Stir it into the mixture until completely blended.  (Doing this while the mixture is still hot will help the peanut butter soften and blend.)
    • Let cool!
    • Put in dog’s bowl (amount needed will vary depending on dog’s weight… For my larger dogs, I give them about 2 cups each mealtime). Immediately before serving, I add a spoonful of coconut oil and approximately 2 teaspoons of nutritional yeast to the mixture, and stir.

     

    Kiss your pups for me, and enjoy!!!!

    26
    Mar
    2018

    Vegan Leather Watches! (Featuring: CPTN Watches)

    I’m so excited to bring CPTN Watches to your attention!

    After months of looking online for the perfect vegan watch, I finally settled on an ethically-made, minimalistic, daily-wear one by CPTN.  Made in Australia, CPTN watches are unisex, versatile, and reasonably priced (mine was about $90 and I wear it ALL the time)– Plus, you get a discount code: FASHIONVEGGIE will get you 10% off!

    cptn vegan watch

    The vegan leather was high quality and soft, and I definitely don’t feel like the watch is super duper masculine or oversized like some unisex watches can be… I have small-ish wrists that can be easily overwhelmed with an enormous timepiece. CPTN watches are water resistant, but not waterproof (take it off before a shower!).  I like that there are a variety of options for you to choose from:  the vegan leather can be black or tan, the metal/hardware can be silver, gold, or rose gold, and the “dial” (face) can be matte white or black.  It comes in a nice, luxe black box with a black pillow, which I thought would be nice especially if I were to give the watch as a gift.

    CPTN offers free shipping and a 12 month warranty.

    Check CPTN watches out for you, your man, your family… Let me know what you think!  Don’t forget: a) the dollar amounts on the website auto-populate to AUS, so adjust that in the upper righthand corner of the website for accurate pricing; b) to use the coupon code (FASHIONVEGGIE) for a discount! Enjoy!

     

    CPTN Watchescptn watches vegan watches

     

    vegan watch on vegan blogger fashionveggie CPTN watch

     

    21
    Mar
    2018

    Dressing The Bump: Cape Dress + Jeane & Jax Vegan Bag

    jeane & jax vegan leather bag

    dress: ASOS maternity // vegan bag: Jeane & Jax // shoes: Stella McCartney (old); similar pair by Stella ON SALE linked here

    One of my goals is to start putting more of my day-to-day looks on the blog, instead of just on my Instagram…  Especially my maternity looks, in hopes that it will help someone else. Because let me tell you, dressing a new bod can be tricky!  Pictured here is one of my preggo OOTD (outfit(s) of the day), which I wore last week when I was in major “boss lady” mode, going from brand meeting to brand meeting.  (When you’re pregnant, you tend to want to be in leggings constantly. Unfortunately, life does not always allow for such behavior.)   Like the majority of my pregnancy wardrobe, dusty rose dress is from ASOS; they have such great, chic, mom-to-be looks at prices that won’t break the bank.  The shoes are last season’s Stella McCartney (I love these similar ones by Stella as well, and they are on major sale!), and the vegan bag is a brand new addition to my closet that came from ethical company Jeane & Jax.  You should check them out– they are super high quality and are also reasonably priced!  I love the neutral, high end lining inside the bag, as well as the rose gold accents.

    Style tip:  I have always loved a monochrome look (specifically, wearing different pieces that are in the same color family– but not the very same color), and this is especially true when pregnant.  It lends an elongated effect to your look, and makes you look instantly put together… No one has to have a clue how nauseated and tired you actually are!

    xoxo-

    Molly

    14
    Mar
    2018

    Men’s Vegan Fashion (Featuring: Will’s Vegan Shoes)

    My husband, Matt, has not bought leather in over a year! You know what has made his transition to men’s vegan fashion 100x easier? The mere existence of the all cruelty-free online retailer Will’s Vegan Shoes.

    Don’t let the name fool you; in addition to shoes, Will’s offers vegan leather good for both men and women which extend way beyond shoes.  Matt has bought their  belts, briefcases (he even has multiple colors of the same briefcase, as you’ll see below… I’m telling you, the man is addicted), and wallets– and the quality never disappoints.  Another bonus: the super accessible price point!  Everything looks high designer, but is a fraction of the price.

    In Matt’s two professional outfits below, all “leather” is vegan and by Will’s.  Check out their website, I guarantee you will be impressed and will find something that you/your dad/your husband/your brother needs in his closet to stylishly represent kind fashion!

    Work Look 1

    men's vegan fashion will's vegan shoes men's vegan fashion, will's vegan shoes will's vegan shoes, men's vegan fashion

    Work Look 2

    men's vegan fashion will's vegan shoes vegan fashion for men, will's vegan shoes men's vegan fashion, wills vegan shoes

    MAS Photography for photos

     

    Will’s Vegan Shoes for all shoes, belts, and briefcases

     

    12
    Mar
    2018

    Should I Support A Wild Animal Sanctuary?

    Happy Monday!  If you follow me on Instagram, you may know that my birthday was this weekend, and that my sweet husband surprised me with an overnight stay at an animal rescue + rehab facility called C.A.R.E.  I documented the trip throughout, and although the response from viewers seemed to be about 95% positive, I did get a few messages that made me realize that there is a discussion to be had about the way in which we interact with, view, and support these exotic animals.

    wild animal sanctuary

    Generally, people seem ok with farm animal sanctuaries.  But when it comes to wild animal sanctuaries like C.A.R.E. , people can get slightly suspicious.  Given the exploitation these types of wild animals (such as big cats, bears, wolves) tend to be vulnerable to, a certain level of unease is 100% understandable!  There are SO many places that present themselves as helping animals, but are actually doing things like charging people to play with, swim with, and cuddle the animals. And some animals are just not meant to be handled in this way.  And what really goes on behind the scenes at places like this?? It’s easy to slap on a pretty label like “sanctuary,” but how can you tell if a place is legit or not?

    Before lending your support to a place claiming to be a wild animal sanctuary, I would look online and/or call ahead to access certain features.

    1. Check into how the animals are “housed.” Do they have ample room? Does it mimic their natural habitat (i.e.- no concrete floors, low ceilings, etc.)?  If possible, it is good for them to have some type of “partner” with whom they share their space, in order to meet their socialization needs.  If a sanctuary is worth their salt, they will try and  closely imitate how the animal lives in the wild.  For example: If an animal is meant to climb, are there structures present upon which they may do so? Do they have pools mimicking a pond they would have access to in the wild? The animals need to be properly stimulated.
    2. How much physical contact are visitors able to have with the wild animals? Ideally, exposure in general should be low.  Any place allowing you to hold baby tiger cubs and pose for pictures with them, etc., should raise a major red flag.  While this does not present a healthy dynamic, a “fake sanctuary” is likely to allow it in order to draw in visitors and make more money.  Getting up close to them when divided is fine, and can encourage important human-animal connections…  But actually handling them is, in most cases, not good.  It is not natural, is frightening for the animals, and is dangerous for all involved.  Not to mention, if someone who works at a place like this is casually handing over a woozy bear/tiger/wolf cub for you to hold, it might very well be indicative of drugs being used to render the animal into such a docile, “safe” state.
    3. Do they breed the animals? At any wild animal sanctuary, this should be a big fat NO. No exceptions.
    4. How the animals end up at the sanctuary?  For instance, at C.A.R.E, all of the animals had been displaced or given up for one reason or another, and needed a place to live out their lives.  They came from circuses that shut down or mistreated them, zoos who would not pay for their medical care when a major issue arose, or private (oftentimes rich and famous) owners who had not anticipated the level or type of care wild animals require. For this reason, there weren’t a lot of “babies” at the sanctuary (if there are, that’s oftentimes a red flag).  A true sanctuary does not pay to bring on an animal unless doing so is an occasional, desperate move to save the animal from a dire situation.
    5. Are the animals pacing around/ pulling out their hair/ exhibiting other “stressed out, cooped up zoo creature” behaviors? This is not a good sign (but also could be symptomatic of PTSD).
    6. What accreditations does the sanctuary have? 501c3? GFAS? These are the two I look out for. 501c3 simply shows that the establishment is a true non-profit (as proven by the IRS); GFAS requires the sanctuary to adhere to a certain, strict set of ethical and welfare guidelines (no breeding or selling, living conditions of animals must be conducive to them living out their lives in a peaceful, socialized, spacious manner).
    7. Visitation guidelines… What are they?  A truly good sanctuary will have some limits on how much exposure these animals get to humans so as not to stress them out. At many of the best ones, a visit needs to be booked in advance.
    8. Why are the animals needing to live out their lives at the sanctuary?  The answer should be that they would/do release animals when possible, but when an animal is there for life, it is because they have simply been too exposed to humans and have no survival skills for the wild. (And this should be the case due to the conditions the animal was in PRIOR to their arrival at the wild animal sanctuary, not because the sanctuary has exposed them to too many people.)
    9. Does the sanctuary support education?  I actually had a few people who seemed very leery about the research & education component of C.A.R.E., but this is actually counterintuitive. Places taking steps to educate communities on the treatment of animals, the needs of wild animals, and the repercussions of zoos, exotic animal trade, etc. are the places that truly value long term conservation. Raising awareness is the only way that animal welfare will change. Additionally, find out what happens when an animal dies at the sanctuary (of old age, illness, etc.)–if they give you a vague answer, that should raise a red flag.  At C.A.R.E., for example, they very directly told me that when they lose an animal, they donate the body to science after having a full autopsy done– this way, they are furthering the knowledge of what makes these animals survive, thrive, or die.

    I hope this post is helpful in outlining things to be aware of when choosing whether or not to support a wild animal sanctuary.  There can be a thin, grey line between true sanctuaries and pseudo-zoos, so it is always good to research ahead of time and to ask the right questions.  Thank you for supporting TRUE ANIMAL SANCTUARIES, which are essential to the longterm conservation and better treatment of animals!

    dress: free people, size xs; shoes: sydney brown (true to size, eco-friendly)