Ashley Graham’s Guide to Smart, Sustainable Shopping

The supermodel shares her tips for editing your wardrobe and investing wisely

By Kim Parker

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It’s early in the morning in Los Angeles when I speak to Ashley Graham. Her voice is low and husky, and her camera is off, but the supermodel is still cheerful, laughing merrily and often throughout our conversation. “I mean, I have a child, so nothing’s too early for me anymore,” she chuckles. “He’s always up earlier. I’m normally awake at 6.30 with the little man.”

After a tumultuous year, during which the former Harper’s Bazaar cover star, her husband and their baby son, Isaac, decamped to her parents’ home in Nebraska (“It was very much hanging out together in a field, barefoot”), Graham is delighted to be back at work, having recently walked in Michael Kors’ 40th anniversary catwalk show. “It was so much fun. So theatrical. All of us girls were just so happy to be there – no one has ever made 42nd Street into a runway before. It was a real pinch-me moment,” she says. “The only thing was that my feet were screaming. I hadn’t worn high heels in over a year!”

 

Ashley in the Michael Kors 40th anniversary show. Photo by James Devaney/Getty Images

 

The supermodel is also now an ambassador for Pandora and, as a life-long fan of jewellery, is thrilled to be the face of the brand’s new Brilliance collection, which showcases lab-created diamonds in pieces starting from £250. “Their mission is to bring quality diamonds to everyone, everywhere,” Graham says of the Danish jeweller. “I think diamonds, like fashion, should be accessible for everyone. And they should be sustainable.” Indeed, the entire collection has been certified as carbon neutral, including its packaging, so it resonates well with Graham’s own beliefs in leading a more responsible and ethical lifestyle, which was only reinforced when she became a mother last year.

 

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“Before I had my kid, people told me my life was going to change and it did – it changed immensely,” she says. “I’ve never been a ‘buy for the sake of buying’ type of girl, but it really makes you realise that being more thoughtful and conscious in our choices is something we all have to do together. It’s much more about our environmental legacy now.”

Below, Graham shares her tips for shopping smarter and investing in items that you’ll love for years to come.

This article first appeared on Harpers BAZAAR UK.

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1/ EMBRACE VINTAGE SHOPPING

“I have been hitting second-hand stores online a lot more recently. Like they say, one person’s trash is another person’s treasure. I do love a second-hand moment, whether it’s slightly used or vintage, because a lot of those clothes are already tailored so the fit is amazing.

“Second-hand accessories are perfect, too, as they work on everyone. I just bought a pre-loved Dior handbag on [luxury re-sale site] therealreal.comand it’s everything I’m looking for: boxy enough to fit in some food and toys for Isaac, plus all of the rest of my stuff, and it makes me feel fancy when I wear it. I don’t necessarily need new.”

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