Fabulous Hemp and Silk Fabrics, Vintage (Reclaimed) and Eco-Friendly Products!
Our Mission: To Be the Change
We offer beautiful eco-gentle craft fabrics, fun vintage items (we consider them reclaimed) and create fabulous fun stuff for a fair price. Sustainability, social responsibility, & affordability are our priorities and reflected in every aspect of our business. We partner with our clients to honor their values & give truly exceptional service.
At Conscious Elegance we are committed to creating Safe Space and strongly believe that everyone should have the right to marry, regardless of self-identity, gender expression or sexual preference. It’s so rare and beautiful when people find each other. We support love in its many forms among consenting adults and we welcome clients of all genders and expressions. Please see our Inclusion Policy for details: http://consciouselegance.com/our-inclusion-policy/
Green and Sustainable
We're proud longtime members of Green America, a non-profit, national organization that certifies, promotes and supports green businesses.
Our business espouses Zero Waste Principles. We use exclusively 100% certified organic cottons, pesticide-free hempsilk blends, and reclaimed materials in our projects and we're happy to offer our materials by the yard to fellow artists and crafters. We offer new fabric options with the highest percentage of plant fiber that we can find, to be kindest to our fellow fauna. We use certified organic cotton thread in all of our garments (that's rare, even in eco-friendly products) and our private label is sewn on certified organic cotton. Our products are individually created in private studios, by fiber artists who are living their Dream.
Making a Stand
Back in 2006, I finally started a dress business when my beautiful friend, who had been shopping in traditional wedding boutiques, was made to feel like she did not have the right to have a gorgeous wedding dress because of her body shape. She cried on my shoulder for an hour and I decided right there and then that I wanted to create the most fabulous dress ever for her. We made exactly what she wanted and her happiness has informed my choice to offer this service to anyone and everyone.
Although we've taken a public stand on our support for models of all sizes (again see our Inclusion Policy, mentioned above), I hadn't until now spoken out on body-shaming issues here or on our website, out of respect for her privacy. With her permission, it is time to come forward. Our studio is a Safe Space and there will be no shaming of any kind; every body is beautiful and we pledge to work with our dress clients to help them create the frock of their dreams.
Obligatory Happy Talk:
*We were awarded 'Green Business of the Year' by the North Tyneside Council's Environmental Agency
* We're longtime members of Green America, which is a national-not-for-profit organization that requires businesses to submit to a stringent application and vetting process, to help highlight the true eco businesses and separate them from the green-washers.
*In past years we were spotlighted by ShoestringVenture.com, which highlights small businesses and tells their story with the hope of inspiring other entrepreneurs.
*We are also included on the website JustDoYourDream.com which focuses on people who are following their heart's desire. (Actual page: http://justdoyourdream.com/lori-del-genis-dress-designer/)
*We're active in local action groups and we educate the community about sustainable fabrics and by donating our scrap fabric to local schools to foster their creativity.
*One of our sustainable dress designs was on exhibit at the American Textile History Museum in Lowell, Mass. That was admittedly *very* cool.
Our dresses and crafts are created in the USA by local artists who are paid a fair living wage and a percentage of our profits is donated annually to environmental causes.
THE STORY OF OUR HEMP FABRIC
Purchase this fabric knowing you are making a difference!
Our hempsilks are made from tussah (wild) silk and hemp raised as a companion crop without the use of chemical fertilizers or pesticides. The silkworms are not harmed but are allowed to exit their cocoons naturally and continue on with their lives. Farmers are able to send their kids to school since hemp demand is increased. Farm and mill workers are paid a fair wage for their work, receive benefits, and have a significant amount of say about their jobs.
The tops of the hemp plants are natural insect repellents and the farmers re-claim the plant-tops after harvest to ward off pests in their silos. Because it's so supportive to its fellow plants, hemp is used as a companion crop to just about everything!
Thanks for stopping by!!
Around the web
Lori Del Genis
Owner, Creator, Designer
I'm a fervent hippie, hanging with my spouse & folks near Boston, MA. How do I Be the Change? I source gorgeous sustainable fabric and create pretty and useful stuff. I love to share with fellow artists who want to make a Difference. We can do it!
- Other Method
Returns & exchanges
- Custom or personalized orders
- Perishable products (like food or flowers)
- Digital downloads
- Intimate items (for health/hygiene reasons)
- Items on sale
- To communicate with you about your order
- To fulfill your order
- For legal reasons (like paying taxes)
Frequently asked questions
Custom and personalized orders
We're very glad to customize your order when possible. Although we request whole yard orders for our fabric offerings, we can sometimes offer a sizeable scrap or remnant if that's all you need. We love to put our scraps to good use - just ask!
We also offer combined shipping which could save you a ton of money. Etsy often takes care of this, but message us if you have any questions. And don't be shy about asking for a refund for shipping overages! (they do happen sometimes)
For hempsilk fabrics and organic cotton items:
* Launder with natural soap by hand or gentle machine wash, drip dry
* After washing, iron while still damp. The hemp is incredibly durable!
* Press with a hot iron; using steam works wonders!
NOTE: a hot iron means *as hot as your iron will go*. Trust us, it's really difficult to damage the hempsilk fabric, despite its silk content - you may be surprised at how hot an iron it can take. I know I was!
Like other natural fabrics, hempsilks will 'heather', i.e. soften and become more textured with each washing (think 'flannel sheets').
We suggest that you experiment with a small scrap before pressing or laundering.
Some of our items have unexpected sizing (like wedding dresses). We'll do our best to give clear measurements along with any label sizes to help make things as accurate as possible. Please do ask if you have questions!
How quickly can you ship items?
Since we keep all of our listed items in our studio, we can send out immediately, usually within 1-2 business days. If there's an unavoidable delay, we'll let you know immediately!
How do you ship sewing patterns?
We send sewing patterns out via USPS First-Class for a flat rate of $2.75 when sent within the US. We ask our friends outside of the US to contact us for a shipping estimate.
Is your studio pet and smoke free?
Absolutely. Also hard-wood floored to minimize dust and carpet fluff.
Do you accept installment payments and lay-away?
Yes, we do! Message us and we'll set up a plan that works for you!
How can you call your shop eco-friendly when you offer silk products?
The vintage silk dresses we offer are reclaimed and many are pre-loved. The hempsilk fabric we offer uses 'kind silk' that was collected after the silkworms naturally exited their cocoons, while hemp is an incredibly eco-supportive crop.
We believe that by focusing on natural and reclaimed materials that have many years left of useful life, we are supporting the earth and honoring the resources that went into creating our products.
How Do You Measure Your Garments?
We take our measurements on vintage adjustable dress forms to try to get the most accurate numbers.
We're aware that dress form measurements can run slightly larger than numbers taken on a real body (real people squoosh, dress forms don't) and in that way we know we're erring on the side of caution - the garment is much more likely to fit!