Brighton is a bustling haven of sustainability. With saving the planet at the very heart of its politics, (it still reigns champion as the ONLY Green constituency in the country); such an attitude is palpable as one walks through the city.
As you worm your way through the North Laine’s, (a symphony of seagulls providing a backtrack to Brighton life), you can’t help but notice that there are nearly more food options available for vegans than non-vegans, a rare find. Chic boutiques boast ethical and sustainably sourced clothing, small organic and sustainable food markets sell reasonably priced groceries, and a totally vegetarian shoe shop stands out. The city also teems with students and young creatives, further creating a vibe of futurity that is so important as we strive for a sustainable future. Indeed, it is a perfect setting for RubyMoon to flourish under, and draw inspiration and encouragement from like-minded people and businesses.
So… here’s a roundup of some of our favourite ethical shops and collectives in Brighton:
The Fair Shop, 21 Queens Road:
With a motto of “Live Fair, Love Fair, Be Fair”, they essentially do what it says on the tin; stocking a range of different brands all with pristine ethical credentials. Their clothes are gorgeous, reasonably priced, and guilt free- the brands having been approved by the World Fair Trade Organisation.
Wolf and Gypsy, 30 Sydney Street:
A personal favourite now, Wolf and Gypsy’s window display and store layout is devilishly enticing, but their attitude to throwaway fashion is even more so. Upcycling vintage clothing to suit a more modern wardrobe, re-patching and mending garments so as not to waste them-they’re encouraging the upcycling of clothing in style.
Love that Stuff, 9 Mermaid Walk, Brighton Marina:
The simplicity of their ethos, “Handmade Stuff that Lasts”, does not take away from the importance of it. Located on Brighton Marina this shop sells a range of Fair Trade household items, clothing and accessories sourced responsibly from around the world. A perfect place for buying ethically minded gifts.
Vegetarian Shoe Shop, 12 Gardner Street:
This Brighton based store solely make vegan friendly shoes. Using a replacement leather material that hasn’t harmed any animals or the environment; for once you can treat yourself to shoes and feel less guilt at the gaping hole in your bank account… Their shoes are also breathable, and all products are shipped worldwide after popular demand.
Silo, 39 Upper Gardner Street:
‘A pre-industrial food system’ that uses pure ingredients, ensures clean farming, and operates a zero-waste policy. They source their produce locally, meaning they reduce food miles, and what’s more; their food is real and totally unprocessed, better for our bodies, and the environment. The interior of the restaurant is also a feat in itself- everything being upcycled from things that would have otherwise been wasted. A minimalist, simple design that hipsters would cry over.
Terre a Terre, 71 East Street:
This acclaimed vegetarian restaurant, born in 1993, is one of the original ethical restaurants in Brighton. Their decisions are driven towards recycling, waste management, giving something back to the environment instead of simply taking. Their food is outstanding, acting as a real tourist attraction in itself.
Infinity Foods, 25 North Road:
This worker co-operative has one of the largest selections of organic vegan and vegetarian foods, cosmetics, and household items in the South East. If you want to shop more organically but not break the bank, this is the place to go. They also have an instore bakery, and have now opened Infinity Foods Kitchen around the corner; a perfect stop for a spot of vegan friendly lunch.
HiSbe, 20-21 York Place:
HiSbe- short for ‘How it should be’ is marketed as ‘a supermarket revolution’. A social enterprise model that wants to put happiness before profits, this sets an example for all the major supermarkets. They source their products locally, pick seasonally, consider waste, farm ethically, and pay all their staff and suppliers fairly.
The Revival Collective:
Brighton based ethical fashion and lifestyle blog is a go to for tips on how to live more sustainably- and in style. An accessible and aesthetically pleasing feast of clothing and make up guides, recipes, and thought-provoking think pieces. Watch out for the events they put on like clothes swaps and documentary showings around Brighton too.
This vegan student food blogger/ Instagrammer will inspire you to get more creative, and ethically conscious, in the kitchen. With tips on where to get the cheapest vegan ingredients, as well as general food inspo, she’s bound to become a household name in the Brighton food scene.
Clothes Swaps- Rags Revival Clothes Swap:
Otherwise known as ‘swishing’, this collective organise meetups that provide a more economical, and environmentally way of shopping. One woman’s rags is another’s riches, so check them out on Facebook and get involved.
There are regular beach cleans in Brighton, helping to protect wildlife. A fun and active way to get involved with the Brighton community whilst doing something good for the environment. The next #pier2pierbeachclean takes place on Saturday 15th July.
Written by Roisin McCormack