Ashley Graham’s Guide to Smart, Sustainable Shopping

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

By Kim Parker

Courtesy

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.

 

Courtesy

 

"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.

3 of 8

3/ LOOK FOR VERSATILE, WELL-MADE PIECES THAT GO WITH EVERYTHING

“Invest in classic, well-made pieces. The one piece I love, which I started wearing before I was pregnant, then wore throughout my pregnancy and am still wearing now as we come up to summer, is my R13 button-down shirt. It’s so lightweight. You can tie it up and make it feel a little bit sexy, or throw it over a vest or wear it with a suit. I have three of the same white shirt that I wear constantly in rotation because Isaac has such sticky little hands – if he’s been eating berries, it’s game over – but the material is so good, you just put a little stain remover on it and it’s fresh again. I will have them for years. I also really love what the designer at Khaite is doing – her sweaters are such good quality and fit that they will definitely be ‘forever’ pieces for me.

“It’s about spending your money wisely. You can always use accessories, like jewellery, to dress things up or down.”

3 of 8