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Women in fashion

Model twins Brett and Scott Staniland reveal the brands to celebrate this International Women’s Day
Brett Staniland at Positive Retail

This article first appeared in our International Women’s Day issue of My Green Pod Magazine, published 08 March 2024. Click here to subscribe to our digital edition and get each issue delivered straight to your inbox

Main image: Brett at Positive Retail. shot by Luke Alland @theexiledbrit

This International Women’s Day calls for us to invest in women to accelerate progress – so we wanted to showcase some amazing female founders in the fashion world who are doing just that.

The talented women here head up companies that make brilliant alternatives to our run-of-the-mill fashion brands, which are accelerating nothing but overconsumption and a polluted planet.

Of course we advocate not buying anything new but, if you’ve decided to treat yourself, give some of the below brands the love they deserve.

Anna Woods, Positive Retail

Ex-buyer Anna Woods started Positive Retail as a small secondhand pop-up store in her hometown of Ramsgate in 2020.

Over her 20-year career she had watched the face of the high street and industry change drastically to a machine prioritising newness, and felt burnt out by the industry and the waste.

Positive Retail has some incredible preloved luxury gems online and in three permanent stores in Ramsgate, Margate and Deal. Positive Retail also has a pop-up in St Leonards until Easter.

I’ve personally found some incredible finds. Anna knows she could grow quicker but prefers the organic route.

Take a look at

Anna Foster, E.L.V. Denim

This is denim done differently. Anna Foster founded E.L.V. Denim in 2018 in a bid to encourage others to champion local manufacturing and slow fashion choices.

Using 100% upcycled fabric, E.L.V. Denim crafts timeless fashion pieces, breathing a second life into denim and other materials originally destined for landfill.

Anna has collaborated with the likes of Swarovski, Hyundai, Gabriella Hearst and, most recently, The Outnet. 

Browse the collection at

Shilpa Shah & Karla Gallardo, Cuyana

Cuyana creates timeless essentials for the modern wardrobe. For me it’s a go-to for beautifully made bags, but the brand also offers other small leather goods and womenswear staples.

The ‘fewer, better’ ethos is instilled throughout the company, through partnerships with artisans and craftsmen around the world.

Production is responsible and excellent circular initiatives include a care guide and repair service. Once you’re done with your Cuyana bag, you can resell the item on the Cuyana site or donate it to women starting a new life after abuse.

Find out more at

Katie Lopes & Nicola Piercy, Stripe & Stare

With only 3% of all underwear sustainably sourced, Stripe and Stare is on a mission to make sustainable and comfortable underwear for all.

The company, which attained B Corp status back in 2022, now has a 100% biodegradable collection comprising underwear, sleepwear and loungewear.

Much of its success is down to the fabric used, including TENCEL, which comes from wood pulp and boasts qualities of lightness and exquisite softness, and cellulosic fibres, which produce lightweight fabrics.

Stripe and Stare has partnered with Ecologi to plant a tree for every purchase.

Take a look at

‘I’ve come from a corporate environment and was always answering to men… My reluctance is that I’ve left that environment and with investors, I’m back in a room asking men for money. I do know I could grow faster if that’s what I did, but there’s something nice about natural, organic growth.’ 

Founder of Positive Retail

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