After selling vintage treasures from her wardrobe when she was 17, Chloë Redmond fell in love with the atmosphere of the Flea Style market. F​​rom here, she was inspired to keep sourcing and selling vintage while making her own jewellery and clothing under her brand Lemon Queen. In 2019, Chloë took over the running of the market, and after a two year hiatus, this haberdashery of preloved gems is back and bursting with colour in Galway’s Westend. 

Can you tell us a little bit about the Flea Style market you run and what is available? 

Flea Style Market is a once a month event in Aras na nGael on Dominic Street, and it’s all about showcasing preloved, handmade and vintage clothes and accessories. It is Galway’s longest running indoor style market, and it had its 10th birthday in June! Sinead Sheridan started up the market and ran it for seven years, she has done so much for preloved style in Galway by creating this wonderful space once a month, and I’m just thrilled to carry on running Flea Style. We have many vendors, from small businesses, local crafters, vintage sellers and wardrobe clear-outs. 

Do you think there is still a social stigma around buying and wearing second hand clothing? What would you say to people who are afraid to make the change? 

Perhaps it’s because I am so involved in the “vintage world”, but I feel that this stigma has died down a lot. Back when I was in school, it certainly wasn’t as common, and friends who didn’t like the idea of it then love it now! As we all become more educated on the climate crisis, the waste involved in fast fashion, and the poor working conditions, it’s hard not to let that affect your thought process when buying clothing. To anyone afraid to make the change to buying second hand clothing, I say, ‘what is there to be afraid of? They’re just clothes!’ Changing your mindset on something as simple as where you shop opens you up to a whole new world of clothing available in charity shops, and you’ll probably wonder why you didn’t start sooner.

Do brands and influencers have a responsibility to promote sustainability?

Yes, there is no excuse in this day and age for these huge brands to be causing so much waste and further damaging our planet. We are seeing a lot more high street brands implement sustainability factors into their stores, which I think is a great step in the right direction, and these changes will hopefully lead to bigger steps in other brands. I think it’s gradually becoming more accessible for consumers to find these types of brands, and hopefully, that continues to grow! As for influencers, I believe if you have a platform of any size, you should at least shed some light on the fast fashion industry and working conditions. Nobody is perfect, and we can’t all buy 100% sustainable items, but it would be great if we saw more influencers showing how fun it is to choose second hand.

What do you think is the future of fashion? 

I certainly like to think the future of fashion is exciting and bright! There are so many more of us calling out for sustainability, and as long as we keep that up, I think the fashion industry will have no choice but to listen.

Read the full interview with Chloë in the July/ August issue of GALWAYnow, on shelves now. The next Flea Style Market takes place on August 14th.