16Annouk Post (35) has been working in sustainable fashion for over 12 years. Next to her job as a communications officer for Fair Wear Foundation, she works on several initiatives concerning sustainable fashion.
One is the Harry Project. She started this project together with Charlotte and Marieke from Charlie+Mary. They want to inspire people to find their own tune and stay in tune with that. They believe that a positive change starts with taking care of yourself first. If you give yourself the care and attention necessary it will be easier to share this with others. You’ll also be able to think for example about the impact of your own behavior as a consumer.
Annouk is also finishing off her first book on sustainable luxury which is being published by Artez Press and will be on the shelves in April 2016. Annouk wants to inspire people and companies to become the best version of themselves en to strive together for the best version of our society.

What makes your wardrobe green?9
I make a deliberate choice where to buy my clothes. Lots of my clothing I get from brands that work on minimizing their negative impact on people and environment. Most brands in my closet are from smaller labels that haven’t been around that long. From the start these younger labels have consciously worked on more sustainable collections. Some of these entrepreneurs I have spoken to in the the past and they are so passionate and enthusiastic about what they are doing.
Since I’ve been working for the Fair Wear Foundation I learn about the complexity of the fashion industry on a daily basis. For example for the brands that have been around longer and are now making the concious decision to work on better working conditions for the laborers, it’s a step by step process. The change will not happen overnight.

25Have you ever had to make style concessions?
When I still had my own store (2004/2005) there weren’t a lot of sustainable brands and for a couple of years I definitely had to make some concessions style wise. I didn’t always feel like myself in my clothes. There weren’t a lot of feminine things to choose from, there were mostly basics like t-shirts, jeans and ‘just-not’ things. Luckily, though still small, there’s a growing number of more conscious brands. But there still aren’t a lot of stores I can got to shop yet.

Can you tell something about your wardrobe itself?
I have a classic white shiny Ikea wardrobe that I got from my ex boyfriend. When he moved out he told me I could keep it. That was fantastic, because now I have this gigantic closet. It’s actually a little too big so I have more than just clothes in there.

Do you keep it neat?7
I’m kind of a messy, chaotic person so I have to really do my best to keep it neat. But I’m getting better at it. In my worklife I am very organized, so I know I am capable of doing the same for my wardrobe.

Is there clothing in your closet that you don’t wear?
Yes, a lot actually. Because of the assignment you gave me to dive into my wardrobe and make 24 outfits I found out there’s a lot I don’t wear. I don’t even know why, because they’re are super fun. It’s almost as if I forget I have certain clothing and I just stick to a little pile of clothes to make my outfits with.
For example I have two blue dresses that I didn’t exactly know how to wear because my legs are kind of white. When I was wearing stockings I accidently found out that it looked great together. So, consciously looking at your clothes and trying on different things.
13Maybe you can see your wardrobe more as a shop where you have to take things out once in a while to see what they look like. You have to just give it some kind of love once in a while, touch it, pick it up, look at it, and than it apparently starts to become alive again. That is so beautiful about this project.

Do you wear make-up every day?
I wear mascara every day and sometimes lipstick. I just had my eyebrows dyed darker, normally they’re sort of white. So right now when I look in the mirror I see Bert from Sesame Street.

What about perfume?
I love perfume. I often wear the fig sense Philosykos from the brand Diptyque. There’s also a very green label called Abel, it’s all organic and I want to buy it for myself as a gift.


PART II

Can you explain a little about your style and taste?8
Since a couple of years I found my own style back. For a long time I didn’t pay a lot of attention to my style because probably I didn’t think it was very important. The focus in my life was on other things. But if I look in my closet now and I see al my cheereful shoes, I think, this is right, this is me. This interview is perfect timing actually.

Do you only buy clothes from sustainable brands?
As much a possible, but also a lot of second hand and at clothing swap parties. Sometimes I buy my basic tanks from the Hema, I prefer the organic cotton line. That’s something I still find hard to find in the city, good, sustainable not too expensive basics. Maybe it’s time to shop online again…

23Any guilty pleasures?
For my work I was in London and I bought a pair of Adidas sneakers designed by Stella McCartney.

What would you pick as ‘being you’ if it had to be clothing?
Those really happy funny colored little Morrocan shoes. I’m not sure if they are really fasionable or if they’re a little too alternative. But those shoes make me really happy and I’m actually just like those shoes; crazy and silly.

Are there things you admire in the way other women present themselves?
Yes, I thinks it’s cool if someone has a very own style. Like one of my friends Janneke, she always wears fligt attendant type of suits. And always red lipstick and her hair put up. She’s an iconic type of woman, I find that very inpspiring.

4If you could build you wardrobe again from zero would you do it differently?
I actually think it’s beautiful that I have a wardrobe that grew and evolved over the years. And that I really have stories going with the pieces, even though I dont talk about it out loud, I found out it’s in my head. I really like that because of ‘out of the green closet’ I’m more aware of that again, I realize every piece of clothing means something to me. I’d like to only add pieces to my wardrobe that are really meaningfull and if not they’re ready to give a way at a clothing swap party and make someone else happy.

3How and when do you shop for your clothing?
Well, I don’t really. I don’t like trying things on. And if I really need something that is more important than a basic tee I like to bring along a good friend. Preferably Ingrid, because she has the best taste. I always call her my personal stylist. But usually I just bump into things because I do have a kind of fetish for more of the conscious stores and products. For me finding something in these places is like a showpiece saying: ‘see! Our future is going to be a more green one!’ My dad looks for stones, fossils, minerals and old travelbooks. Those are his showpieces and he loves to tell stories about the past. I rather talk about the future, but I do think I took over a little bit of this collectors craze.

How do you share your finds?
For a while I blogged about them because it was hard to find awesome brands and designers that were producing better and more conscious. But at one point there were more blogs and I was like; time for a new project! Right now I share nice procucts like organic chocolate or hotspots in the city on instagram and I blog about ‘finding your tune’ for Harry. And finally I realized that, because of my book, I have been on a journey for 13 years and have collected examples of pioneer designers and brands. I’m going to share my favorite collection in my book.

Do you have favorite shops?2
Charlie+Mary and Sukha (more for inspiration) and secondhand stores like Marbles Vintage, Episode and ‘de Ruilhoek’ in Amsterdam-South.

Do you have favorite brands?
I love Veja sneakers, super stylish. They also are very open and honest on their website that they are far from perfect and admit that it can always be done better.

What are you tips for other women?
Don’t try to entirely change your closet overnight. Build it up slowly with things you intentionally choose and that make you happy. Go on your own journey and find out what your meaning of  sustainable and conscious living is. What does it actually mean for you and what brands would suit that idea. Go to their website to find out what they do. Really try to approach it from a brand point of view instead of just the product. Of course you want to love the product as well, but also look at the bigger picture.