Sustainable Luxury 101 with Eluxe Magazine's Chere Di Boscio
Magazine editor and writer Chere Di Boscio didn’t want to write about exotic animal skins and furs anymore. But she couldn’t find a magazine to work for solely focused on sustainable luxury. So she started her own—Eluxe Magazine. Learn more about her favorite sustainable luxury brands and how to buy some fancy vintage.
So, who are you?
I'm a former glossy magazine editor and SOAS university of London lecturer who has worked in Buenos Aires, Toronto, Paris, London, Dubai, and now works from home in very, very rural Peru! (yes, really!). My life is totally plant based, and though I used to love to travel, I'm done with that for now, unless it's for emergencies, to see my family or something. I'm really getting into off-grid living and am just learning to grow my own food properly.
Why did you start Eluxe Magazine? Why focus on sustainability?
I launched the magazine in 2013 when I lived in Paris. I had just stopped working for a Dubai-based luxury magazine and started editing a Paris based glossy, and frankly, the emphasis on exotic animal skins, furs, diamonds, private jets, etc., just started making me feel sick. I could no longer write about and publish such things with a good conscience and looked for a sustainable luxury magazine to edit instead. Finding none, I launched Eluxe!
I realize that all sounds pretty negative but there were some hugely positive reasons to start the magazine too. I really wanted to help small brands grow, and from day 1 I have promoted brands like NAE Vegan Shoes, Saachs Organics, Hynt Beauty, Holland Street, and others which are now all quite big, but my mandate continues to be to promote smaller brands that are really working hard to be ethical and sustainable.
How do you describe your own style?
I've always had a thing for 70s rock chick chic, think: Anita Pallenberg, Nico from the Velvet Underground, and Talitha Getty. That's pretty much what I try to emulate when I dress up to go out. For that reason, I have a bunch of vintage 70s maxi dresses that I love and also some Reformation maxis that imitate that style. I'm also a fan of the ethical brand AMUR and recently have become obsessed with Flor et.al.
What's a piece/outfit in your closet you wear to make more of a statement?
I love wearing floppy hats and have a few I bought here in Peru in markets and one I bought in Paris but I forget from where. I also have a huge vegan fur stole that makes quite a statement. It was a gift from a friend in Paris and the label on it isn't a brand I'm familiar with (I'm pretty much the opposite of a 'label whore', as you can see!). I'm also a fan of platform shoes and have a bunch of what my husband calls 'disco shoes' from Susi Studio. I love the huge height they give me, but honestly, I don't wear heels anymore since I moved to Peru sadly. Actually, here in the countryside, I rarely stray from yoga pants and tees these days. I kind of miss dressing up.
What are your favorite sustainable luxury brands? Favorite places to get vintage luxury?
Again, I'm not really too into brands, and have pretty much zero brand loyalty, but I do like how Stella McCartney has set a precedent for designers to become more vegan-friendly and eco conscious. As for vintage luxury, I just visited my sister in Toronto and there are loads of great designer vintage shops on Queen Street West near Ossington Avenue. I bought a gorgeous vintage Diane Von Furstenberg wrap dress and some great Gucci cat eye sunglasses with a mother of pearl frames last time I was there.
What's your advice for someone who wants to bring more sustainable luxury into their wardrobe but doesn't know where to start?
I'd say find a good tailor. Get some nice material you like, take it to a dressmaker, and show her a pic of an expensive dress you'd love to have, or better yet, if you have a friend who has a pricey designer dress you adore and if it's in your size, borrow it and show it to the tailor so they can copy it. Voila! A designer dress made just for you at a fraction of the price! Even better, learn to sew your own clothes and make what you like. Why not? Also search eBay (not so popular these days, I know) or Facebook markets for luxury basics, like ethical cashmere sweaters or second hand designer coats, which you can wear for years.
Finding good vintage normally depends on living in big cities where there are more wealthy people discarding designer clothes—London and Paris are incredible for that, though Parisians know the value of stuff and as a result, vintage designer goods are still super expensive, sometimes even more so than a new item from a brand, as the seller will tell you the vintage item is rarer and thus more valuable.