Marieke Eyskoot: ‘It is not difficult at all to live sustainably’

Marieke Eyskoot, expert in sustainable lifestyle, wrote a new book about sustainable living. “This is a good guide,’ is your partner if you have a clear and concise guide you can use to more sustainable choices to make, and also really want to enjoy.

Marieke Eyskoot © Melody Lieftink

The Dutch Marieke Eyskoot wrote with “This is a good guide to” a guide for a sustainable lifestyle. They will show you that sustainable living – in terms of dress, grooming, eating, living, working and leisure time actually not so difficult. Marieke is the prime example of that sustainable living also in a stylish way. She advises (sustainable) fashion brands and companies and is co-founder of MINT, the sustainable fashion fair is held in the Benelux. Marieke wrote earlier, the fair kledinggids ‘Talking Dress’.

You have a guide written to help people to live our lives more sustainably. How easy is it to make a sustainable lifestyle to keep?

Marieke Eyskoot: ‘Much easier than people think. That is also exactly why I the book I have written. Even though people think often that it is harder, uglier, and more expensive to make sustainable choices, I am convinced that it is really simple. I also find it normal that people to look and wonder or sustainable living is more expensive. But a lot of things that you can do to live more sustainably, are just cheap. Thus, it is less the eating of meat, for example, very, very good for our planet and you will save a lot of money. In addition to the cost, it has other benefits as well. For example, it is healthier, many people fall through it and you learn a lot of new recipes by know. Your taste buds are just happier.

© This is a good guide

We tend to be our pattern that we just cannot change. That might be a safe way of life, but not necessarily the best. Sustainable life is not restrictive, but just enriching. You will learn so many new things to know: new shops, new brands, new ways of sharing, borrowing and renting. There are so many doors open.

You will learn which food or just not kept in the fridge should be, you are going to perhaps not care to use, and buy generally smarter. Sustainable shopping is, for instance, buy clothes that really fit you. If you buy clothes that you not only like, but that you also really want to wear and with the rest of your wardrobe fits, you can get a lot more. We are a bit lost for what quality is and what not, but if you use common sense you pick still quality pieces.


Sustainable living is much easier than people think.

Timelessness is also very important. Choose for things in the future you also will love. That is just a mental flip, but long-term thinking is really very good for your wallet, peace of mind and the environment. Your thought pattern to adjust is not about one overnight, that takes time. We are on all sides affected, so we must actively make the choice to gradually else to think about.

If we all contribute what we can, we come in there?

Marieke Eyskoot: “People often think that their efforts make no sense. Perfection gets in our way. We should not all perfectly sustainable life, but if we all do our best, we are going to indeed move forward. If we continue to think that small adjustments are not useful, we also remain on the spot engrossed. Therefore, it is called my book ‘A good guide’ and not ‘The ultimate guide’. I don’t ask people to be saints; I think it is best if people do what suits them and what they like.”

You speak often about consuminderen. How do you think to persuade people to become more conscious and less shopping?


You will save money and time by opting for quality.

Marieke Eyskoot: ‘By showing how much fun it is and how many advantages it brings. A lot of people think: ‘what’s in it for me?” However, you will save money and time by opting for quality. You choose something beautiful and durable that will last for years and so do not need to be replaced. You support by the way something where a good story behind it and that is a lot of fun. Just think about how much time it takes to all sorts of new things to buy, which might not be really comfortable to sit in, which you then send back or away quickly have to throw out and replace. Which is a shame. Just as very long for your closet and not know what to wear because you have so much. That is a crazy contrast. A lot of people find it more pleasant to be less, because the rest gives.

You keep yourself always to your own tips?

Marieke Eyskoot: “No, of course not, I’m also not perfect. But of course it is my work to live sustainably, and I am very happy. I’ve been making this book also learned a lot.


I’m also not perfect. But I’m a happy sustainable life.

I am very happy in the shower and get there, my best ideas, because it’s a place where you have space in your head. It would be for the environment and our wallet the best if we but five minutes would be showering per day. I’m really trying and also go often with my husband in the shower, ten minutes to have. You will me something see wear from a brand that is not sustainable. I bought me a very, very in went in depth and I want my clothes to pay. I also have a pet, that is also not very durable, but nice and I got her from the shelter have been adopted. It helps me relax and the value of animals to see. That is also true for travel. Travel is of course very bad for the environment, but it also teaches you a lot about our world and about dealing with people. If you are travelling on a to be as ethical and ecological way possible, I think that that should be able to. But I find it absurd that you every month for 19.90 euros you can fly for a trip to the city.’

What do you think of fast fashion chains who take the initiative to make a sustainable collection on the market?


A separate sustainable line release should be a first step, not the end of the

Marieke Eyskoot: ‘In the first instance, I am glad. The big players should be in motion. It is good that there is a business case to build sustainable collections, because it shows that it is not a hype, but a rough idea where purchasing power behind it. But a separate sustainable line release should be a first step, not the end. I hope that people who have collections really buy and show that they want it. But as a lot of continue to produce – at the lowest possible price and the lowest possible quality – your business model and your brand your name patches with eco collections, then you are not doing a good job. There must be a structural change. ‘

Hopefully they will see it as a kind of exercise to the innovations on a large scale.

Marieke Eyskoot: “If there is a step back, then I think it’s super. With their power and strength they can have an incredible impact on the market. That should you expect from them. Now its often the smaller brands that pioneer and the fast fashion chains that follow. They were leading in, come on!’

People seem to have a hard time with finding the right stores and brands.


Cheap does not mean it is low in cost, but that someone else price for you to pay.

Marieke Eyskoot: ‘in the Back of each chapter of my new book is a guide, where all kinds of shops and brands, where you to sustainable shopping. From basics to high end, you can sustainable brands. In the ordinary world of fashion, people find it absolutely not bad that there are more expensive brands, but as the sustainable brands, is often about the price talk. Cheap does not mean it is low in cost, but that someone else price for you to pay. If you are not, it is the people who make it or the earth that is rifled. That you have to realize. Besides, it is also not that if the textile workers a higher wage would be that the price of the clothing is very expected to rise. Labour make but a small part of the chain. That comes at 3% to 5% of the total price, so for a hefty price increase you should really not be afraid. There is really much to gain.’

What are your favorite places or brands to make sustainable fashion shopping?


A unique and revolutionary brand in the sustainable fashion is, honest by Bruno Pieters.

Marieke Eyskoot: ‘In Belgium you have some nice shops and brands! Supergoods in Mechelen, Gent and online is a very nice place to stay. Juttu is doing well. Here you have to be careful, because they go mainly for the story, so not all the brands that they sell are durable. A unique brand in the sustainable fashion is, honest by Bruno Pieters. He is really the only one in the world that is totally transparent to communicate about his fashion brand. He even shows how much profit he makes, what’s really revolutionary is in fashion. As a lingerie brand, you have la fille d’o, which is really very nice and honest. A great Belgian brand that bridges the gap between fashion and interior is a Carpet of Life. They make rugs from old clothes and if you want to even of old textiles from your own wardrobe or that of someone dear to you. You also have been able to get acquainted with the kledingbibliotheek of Les RebElles d’anvers. Antwerp is also a tweedehandshemel.

Excerpt from ‘This is a good guide’

I would be really endless and can continue about my favorite sustainable brands, but I will sum some of them on which I think people see them as good alternatives to conventional brands they know. Studio JUX, I think it is very beautiful. They have their own factory in Nepal, which is unique. Often brands with factories that also for other brands clothing, which makes it more difficult to check. They have a local woman from the factory trained to be a manager. The pioniersmerk People Tree, I find, is also fantastic. The founder, Safia Minney, is a good friend of mine and we often work together on projects. Miss Green is a Dutch brand that at first focused on the perfect basics, but now also a bit more trend conscious designs in the range. Besides, it is also affordable. Kuyichi, the denimmerk, also a real winner. EcoAlf makes cool garments and accessories of waste. It shows that you of fishing nets and koffieprut beautiful things. L’herbe Rouge is a beautiful French brand with innovative techniques. In terms of accessories, I think it handtassenmerk from Amsterdam’s O My Bag is very beautiful, and the shoes from Veja and Good Guys the ideal alternatives for non-sustainable brands.’

Do you think that the authorities enough to take the initiative?

Marieke Eyskoot: ‘That depends on what government. We have in the Netherlands, for example, minister Lilianne Ploumen and they do good work. After the disaster of Rana Plaza, she has her neck stretched out and tried to improve the conditions. She has in the Netherlands, a covenant was established which brands unite and can work together to improve the situation. At the same time, I find it very strange that Dutch companies, their products, somewhere is able to produce in ways that are completely unacceptable. It is absurd that it is legal to so to trade. Why do we find this normal? Why do we accept that, while we would protest had it to ourselves happened to you? Why can we choose between ethical and unethical things?


Why do we accept that, while we would protest had it to ourselves happened to you? Why can we choose between ethical and unethical things?

In the chocoladesector in the Netherlands with the government agreed that only sustainable chocolate cocoa on the market will be in 2025. You can then ask questions on how stringently that standard. Apart from that, it is a very important step and would other sectors this as an example.

You can as a government to be a positive stimulus. If the vat decrease for durable products, gets people over the finish line. That vat reduction would only be for a limited time and then be phased out, but it gives attention to sustainable brands, which is a huge boost for the sector.

I find that the Netherlands have a leading role in the play. We take pride in that we have human rights is very important, we can show that. Now is the power of large companies are still very large. The government can have that power and lobby neutral. I hope that our choices will be for the citizens here and all over the world the best, instead of choices that the large companies would be advantageous.’

Since your previous book ‘Talking dress’ a lot of improved?

Marieke Eyskoot: ‘Yes, there is much more choice. I’m already fifteen years working with sustainability and I have my previous book five years ago written. Before that, I can’t write, because there was simply not enough brands and stores existed. Those that were, really started from ideology and not so much aesthetics. They were tremendously important to these pioneers, without whom the offer is never extended. But you must also be outside of your own circle and appeal to people that buy clothes because they are the items like, and not specifically to the story.


My dream is that I unnecessary am and durable just the norm.

I also buy clothes, furniture and makeup because I like it, not only because they are made sustainably. Today, this is not a problem anymore, you can be perfectly beautiful, durable things. A brand such as Filippa K has even in some countries a own secondhand shop. That is smart, making clothes that are qualitative and not once, but several times it can be sold. That is also sustainable.

On the other hand, there is also much work to be done. You would every shop should be able to walk, and sustainable items can buy. My dream is that I unnecessary am and durable just the norm.”

“This is a good guide’ – Marieke Eyskoot (336 pages, hardback, € 20)

Sneak peak of the book ” This is a good guide.’

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