Summer Rayne Oakes is a model, activist and entrepreneur and Style, Naturally is her recently released book on sustainable fashion and beauty.
Summer’s work spans multiple disciplines, all of which are deeply imbued in environmental issues, including waste management, organic contaminants & environmental health, landscape impact analysis and sustainable development. This work often overlaps with her environmentally-relevant, values-based modelling, for which she is largely recognised. Find out more over at the Summer Rayne Oakes's website.
The book's aim according to Summer, is to elevate the profiles of environmental and social issues through style. The book encourages readers to spare a thought for the effects that the clothes they wear have on the health of our planet, and although most of us will never manage to live a life as sustainable as the author, if we make a couple of small changes after reading it, that is of benefit to the world we live in.
Summer explains how the fashion industry is only just coming round to an idea of sustainable style and this makes her book perfectly timed. I know of many up and coming brands that use sustainability as a unique selling point for their goods, but this is definitely a fairly new concept. The big designers are certainly slower to follow suit and find it harder to adapt their ideas to fit with eco-friendly ethics.
The danger of a book like this is that it will become preachy, but Summer has not fallen into that trap. The book is informative, while still being fun to read - an emphasis is placed, in fact, on not following the rules, so it would be hypocritical of the author to instruct us in that way.
All in all a good read that grounds both the historical environment of sustainable fashion and beauty and that is also a commentary of the state of things today. It is also full of products, brands and websites that I had not considered before, and for that reason alone is a fashionista 'must read'.
BOOK - Time Out's Little Black Book of London
BOOKS - On The Style PA's Bookshelf
WANTED - Bookshelf Chair