I have always found fashion to be a source of individuality and self-expression. I remember on my first day of preschool, my mom insisted I wear a dress when all I wanted was to don my overalls and Tweety Bird T-shirt. As a result, I spent the entire morning crying while the rest of the kids were happily playing Simon Says. It was clear growing up that letting me wear what I wanted made me a more agreeable child. In fact, wearing what I want makes me a more agreeable adult. If I am feeling a bit off, the power of a good outfit can do wonders. (Please comment below if you are also one of these people. I would really love someone to validate me.)
Much similar to interior design, how you express your personal style is powerful. It’s art. But, as many of us know, the fashion industry is the second largest polluter in the world (behind oil) and a huge eco enemy. Some fast facts:
- According to a study by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, it is responsible for one garbage truck of textiles wasted every second, and 92 MILLION TONS of solid waste dumped in landfills each year. This includes discarded clothes that consumers buy and get rid of (the average American discards 68 pounds a year), as well as unused fabrics and textiles from companies who make more than what they end up using.
- In 2017, it was reported that in 2015 alone, the fashion industry consumed 79 billion cubic meters of water—enough to fill 32 million Olympic-size swimming pools and that figure is expected to increase by 50% by 2030. To put it into perspective, it takes 2,720 liters of water to make a single T-shirt.
- The industry is the second biggest polluter of water, after the agriculture industry, polluting 17-20 percent of global fresh water.
- The total greenhouse gas emissions from textile production currently stands at 1.2 billion tonnes which is more than those of all international flights and maritime shipping combined.
My own contribution to the problem comes to mind often as someone who seemingly came out of the womb drawn to the glamour of clothes. In my lifetime, I’ve discarded countless clothes, many of which were worn a handful of times only to be promptly stored in the back of my closet for years, before eventually meeting their fate at a local Goodwill, or perhaps more accurately, a local landfill. So, I will be the first to admit that when the topic of sustainability in fashion comes up, it only takes a few minutes before my head starts to spin. What exactly is sustainable fashion? Isn’t all fashion technically unsustainable because it produces so much waste? According to Green Strategy, there are seven forms of sustainable fashion, and ideally every time a new garment is produced, all forms of sustainability should be combined, but the industry has a long way to go.
As individual consumers, just as it applies to design, buying vintage, second hand, and thrifted is the most sustainable option. Another solution I hear often is to simply buy less. The purchasing power of us as consumers is just that: power. So even (and perhaps, especially) in our non-purchases, we are exercising our power and taking action to shift the paradigm of the industry. That said, it is not lost on me that the financial ability to actively choose what you buy and in turn what companies you support is a privilege. For those of us that have the opportunity to exercise that privilege, being mindful is not just important, it is necessary. Our choices matter. I think it is common to think that someone else will fix the problem. It can feel as if the problem is so far removed from our daily lives, which makes it difficult to take action, meanwhile, so many parts of the world are witness to the negative impacts of the industry every day.
Are you still with me? I know this is a tough subject, none of us are perfect, and the world is full of issues that deserve attention. I get it. But as trivial as the fashion industry can appear, the fact is that clothes are a part of our everyday. We live our lives in them and while it might seem daunting to reverse the impacts of the industry, shifting our habits as individuals is fathomable. Okay, so where do we start? How can we begin? By buying second hand (when possible). By purchasing quality pieces that will last over buying fast fashion in quantity. By supporting brands that recycle, reduce their waster waste, pay their employees livable wages, provide safe and fair working conditions, make efforts to carbon offset, and donate to sustainable charities. By buying from small businesses who treat people and the earth better, we take action to shift the practices of the industry.
Without further ado and before I talk (write?) your ears off (too late?), let’s get to the brands that are striving toward sustainability:
What They’re Doing Right: Everlane is a brand that I stumbled upon via the constant efforts of Instagram to sell me things I don’t (really) need. A sponsored ad popped up and I took the bait. Turns out they are a really good company with practices focused on quality and economy. They source really good materials and factories to make timeless “basics” like Grade-A cashmere sweaters, Italian leather shoes, and Peruvian Pima tees. Their clothes are meant to be staples in your wardrobe with a long life. The factories they use are given a compliance audit to evaluate factors like fair wages, reasonable hours, and the environment. The best part?? They believe customers have a right to know how much their clothes cost to make—from materials to labor to transportation—and selling them at fair prices, minus the traditional retail markup. By doing so, they produce quality clothes that last at accessible prices, thus reducing the need to buy from the big guys.
In Our Cart: ’90s Cheeky Straight Jeans | The Double-Strap Block Heel | The Foldover Crossbody
What They’re Doing Right: ABLE considers themselves a lifestyle brand focused on ending generational poverty through providing economic opportunity for women. They are also doing something that is kind of revolutionary: publishing their employee’s wages (and not just the average, but their lowest paid). Here is a not so fun fact: the products we enjoy are most often made by women who are severely underpaid and can’t meet the basic needs of themselves or their children. So, ABLE is striving to be completely transparent about wages in hopes more companies will follow suit. By supporting brands that pay fair wages, we can begin to stop contributing to the inhumane practices of big corporations, who mass produce.
In Our Cart: Pamela Double Strap | Mini Tag Necklace | Chaltu Top Zip Crossbody
What They’re Doing Right: Kotn’s namesake authentic Egyptian cotton is grown in only one place in the world, the Nile Delta. It is finer, softer, and more breathable than any other cotton. Apparently, since 2001, there has been a 95% decline in demand from big corporations that opted to go with cheaper options. SO, to help rebuild the industry from the inside, they work directly with cotton farming families in Egypt. Think of it as “farm-to-table, but for your clothes.” As a B-Corp certified company, their responsibly-run operation employs locals, securing their craft and their livelihood. By scrapping the middleman, they ensured a fair wage for them, and an honest price for the consumer. OH, and top it off they partnered with pro-literacy organizations on the ground in the Nile Delta to help end child labor practices.
In Our Cart: Essential Crew In White | Straight Leg Crop Pant | Undercoat In Camel
Whimsy & Row
What They’re Doing Right: Los Angeles-based company Whimsy & Row uses deadstock fabric (a.k.a. excess and leftover fabric) from other brands who buy more than they end up using. These are the fabrics that often get lost in a huge warehouse and eventually end up in landfills. Instead, they take these fabrics and turn them into lovely and classic silhouettes. Their styles are meant to be versatile, statement pieces in your wardrobe and are designed to last.
In Our Cart: Aleksandra Top in Baby Stripe | Jordan Jacket in Cream | Alyssa Bodysuit in Black
What They’re Doing Right: Vetta makes capsule wardrobes, responsibly produced with fabrics that are sustainable, mostly Tencel or deadstock fabrics. At this point, I’m sure most of you know what a capsule wardrobe is, but in case you aren’t sure, it refers to a collection of a few essential, classic items that are meant to be super versatile and easily paired with other statement pieces (a cool vintage jacket, perhaps). Anyone can create their own capsule wardrobe, but Vetta makes it pretty dang easy with their timeless styles, many of which can be worn multiple ways or are convertible (like that cute white top up there). Also, their poly bags, tissue paper, and inserts are made from 100% recycled materials, and boxes are made from 90% recycled and 10% FSC certified materials.
In Our Cart: The Boxy Blouse | The Convertible Shirt Dress | Every Day Pant
What They’re Doing Right: Doen’s brand ideology focuses on embracing a fewer but better mentality in regards to consumption. They create quality, timeless pieces to ensure that they can be worn season after season, and let me tell you, their stuff is BEAUTIFUL. They believe clothing should not be viewed as disposable, so much so that they encourage secondhand sales of their clothes via resale and consignment retailers. (There are brands/designer that would never do this, and in fact some have been known to burn extra stock to maintain the exclusivity of their product. It sucks). Doen also uses 100% recyclable packaging and their eco-shippers include a minimum of 90% post-consumer content.
In Our Cart: Billie Jean Top | Henri Top | Myrtle Overall
What They’re Doing Right: This may be upsetting to hear for the people out there who love denim (me). Traditionally, to make a SINGLE pair of jeans, 1,500 gallons of water are used. That is SO much water. Boyish jeans use 1/3 the amount of water and they recycle the water they do use so no water is polluted in the process. They work with factories that have fair, safe, and healthy working conditions and that suppliers meet their standards for social responsibility as well as safe, non-toxic, and better materials by auditing their factories with third-party auditing companies.
In Our Cart: The Kirby | The Tommy | The Cody
What They’re Doing Right: Christy Dawn is another company that exclusively uses deadstock fabric to create timeless pieces and their practices are rooted in creating quality pieces that will last. I am quite literally obsessed with their sophisticated Little House on the Prairie vibe and am dying to one day buy this dress. In order to create such gorgeous styles, they pay a premium for the most talented seamstresses in Los Angeles, all of whom are paid a competitive wage and receive health benefits.
In Our Cart: The Ida Skirt | The Penny Jumper | The Dawn Dress
Raven + Lily
What They’re Doing Right: Raven + Lily is a fair trade brand that specializes in uniquely beautiful leather bags, jewelry, and home accessories. They work with over 1,500 women artisans and give fair trade wages and access to safe jobs, sustainable incomes, healthcare, and other tools they need to thrive. I am very into their jewelry, which is surprisingly super affordable. I just bought this necklace and am really excited to wear it with my favorite black jumper. Oh, and you can feel good about your purchases because every purchase of a Raven + Lily product helps fund microloans to female entrepreneurs in partnership communities.
In Our Cart: Day Crossbody | Pom Blanket | Yami Backpack
What They’re Doing Right: Girlfriend Collective makes leggings, sports bras, and other workout clothes from recycled water bottles. Yep, this is a thing and it’s fantastic. If you go to their site they go into all the nitty gritty details of how the bottles are collected, broken down, and made into fabric. Also, they have a wide range of sizing (XXS-6XL) which has less to do with sustainability and more to do with inclusivity (which is SO important). A few of us here at EHD use their leggings exclusively and we love them.
In Our Cart: Lola Bra | LITE High-Rise Legging | High-Rise Run Short
What They’re Doing Right: I would be remiss if I didn’t mention VitaminA Swim. You all know that that suit right there is Emily’s favorite swimsuit she has ever bought. It is the swimsuit to end all swimsuits. So, not only do they do swimwear right, their sustainability efforts are impressive. Founder and designer Amahlia Stevens spent three years developing EcoLux™, the first premium swim fabric made from recycled nylon fibers. In fact, all materials used are certified to meet the global Oeko-Tex standard for safe textiles and by partnering with One Planted Tree for every dollar donated, a tree is planted.
In Our Cart: Edie Bodysuit | Martinique Romper | Tash Tote
What They’re Doing Right: Rothy’s is another brand that makes its product from recycled water bottles. Music to my ears. So far, they have repurposed 20 million water bottles, and counting. Their shoe boxes are strong enough to be shipped alone, which means no box-in-a-box shipping. Question: WHY DOESN’T EVERY COMPANY DO THIS? And for every mile they ship, they use Carbon Fund to offset the carbon emissions. Also, their vegan and biodegradable shoe boxes are made from 85% post-consumer recycled materials. Both the cards and the box are 100% recyclable, and the box is resealable so no tape is needed during the returns process. I felt like they were a good brand to end with because all that they are doing is seriously amazing and more sustainable than most.
In Our Cart: The Point | The Sneaker | The Loafer
Alright guys, we finally made it. But before I go, since we are talking about what we can do as individuals, I wanted to share a few tips on recycling clothing:
Instead of donating old clothes to Goodwill or Salvation Army, (which will likely end up in landfills simply because the sheer volume they receive is too much to sell) try selling your used clothes online. This ensures your clothes will have a longer life. I use Depop, but there are also others like ThredUp that do much of the work for you. For more high end/designer pieces, you can send to The Real Real to sell for you. Selling your clothes directly to someone will always yield better results and will decrease the likelihood of it ending up in landfills.
You can also get together with friends and organize a clothing swap. Bring all your clothes you are planning on giving away and have your friends do the same. You will likely get some great additions to your wardrobe without spending any money OR producing any waste.
Okay, that is it, I promise. What are some other sustainable brands that you love? Do you have any other tips, tricks, or general tales to share? Tell me everything.
This is awesome! Thank you so much!!! I have another to add to your list…Reformation.
I second Reformation!
Thank you! and yesss I love reformation 🙂
I second Amour Vert. So excited that they are opening a store near me soon.
I second Amour Vert. I am so excited that they have a store opening near me.
I’m also surprised Amour Vert didn’t make the list! They have the softest most amazing t-shirts I’ve ever felt and that aren’t see-through!
Also, Veja! Great sneakers, some made out of really interesting materials like talapia “leather”.
Yes! How did Amour Vert not make this list?! Some of my favorite pieces are from there.
Oooh I will check them out! x
That felt like a REAL article on fashion. Well done, Ryann!
Thank you 🙂
I don’t think there is any clothing company doing as much conservation for the planet than Patagonia. They will repair any article of clothing and flat out encourage you to not buy their product if you don’t truly need it. They also have made sure that the international workers making their products are making a living wage and treated well.
I used to be a Patagonia fan, but they continue to make a huge number of micro fiber (fleece) products. While some are made from recycled materials, this type of fiber degrades and releases micro plastics into our water column. Meanwhile, they fund political and social take downs in other areas, which I find hypocritical. Patagonia might be better than most, but they are an extremely green washed company.
Love the post. But I want to see all size women in your fashion lists (not just one type). Your staff does not all have the same body type. The world is not just one size woman. Fashion, in addition to ruining the earth, wants us to think we need to be one size and look one way. We can do better, you can do better. You have done some posts with your staff featuring other sizes. If this is a weekly post, I want to see more sizes and body types.
Your loyal reader (size 12, curvy and not like a single photo above),
Huh? I see several body types in this. But why do you need to see your EXACT body in pictures to be validated? Just getting your morning cup of it’s-all-about-me?
I don’t care what body types are featured. I just appreciate the heads up about cool clothing companies on this FREE blog.
Another loyal reader.
I agree with Erin, people both deserve and need to see themselves represented.
I think in this case the lack of inclusivity in these pictures says less about Emily and Team and more about the featured brands who chose the models. I don’t know all of their particular sizing but I often struggle to find sustainable closing in my size, which yeah is super frustrating that even the (otherwise super great) sustainable brands often aren’t very inclusive….
I also see several body types above. No need to be condescending & rude. You can do better Erin. Perhaps these photos also come directly from the labels? Email them all directly & stop being negative here.
I see the issue that these companies aren’t showing different body types because they don’t sell plus size fashion and therefore aren’t going to feature women of different body shapes.
These clothing options just aren’t available to a majority of the population and that’s a real problem. Bigger women would like to buy clothes that are sustainable and globally conscious as well.
Yup, to second Erin’s point, I clicked on every link to see if the companies–other than the exercise clothing–had plus sizes, and the closest you get is that ONLY Everlane offers sizes 14 and 16. If your choices of eco-friendly clothes lacked size inclusivity, you could acknowledge that right from the start so this isn’t just a scroll-through of disappointment for everyone who isn’t Emily’s size. (I mean, it’s nice I can go buy yoga pants from that one place, but…I’d like pretty dresses, too.) I love this blog and come daily, but I have learned never to click on the fashion posts since they are very much about where Emily shops, and Emily doesn’t have to worry about sizes, so why torture myself drooling over clothes I can’t buy. I honestly don’t know why I thought this post would be different. Oh, well.
Great post! I have been trying to buy sustainably made clothes this year and have been using the Good On You app which is great for checking companies ratings. Also, I saw recently that H&M is collecting clothes to be repurposed or recycled – I’m not sure how it works but I always struggle with what to do with clothes that have no life yet but I feel bad throwing in the trash so it’s something to check out!
out encourage you to not buy their product if you don’t truly need it
You can recycle your old clothing you can’t donate at H&M! And they give you a discount for a future purchase. They claim to have sustainable brands as well.
Dudley Stephens! Super chic fleece tops made from recycled water bottles. Extra points because they are a woman run company. Perfect for days you want to wear sweats but you need to look pulled together.
OOh. we’ll check them out!
Yes! Thank you for shining a spotlight on this issue that we as Americans seem to want to shove under the rug. I have been shopping fair trade or second hand for myself in the past couple of years, and it can be frustrating, so I appreciate the round up. I got to go shop at the Mata Traders warehouse in Chicago a couple years ago and I highly recommend!
Thanks for this important post. I wish it was a focus here year round and nit just around Earth Day. I cringe every time Emily shares a post if Target clothing, knowing that they are produced by exploited (mostly) women in factories not dissimilar from the one that collapsed 6 years ago this week killing over 1000 people.
I’m so happy to see you showcasing sustainable fashion! It definitely takes a huge shift of mindset to stop buying fast fashion (please no more Zara clothes) and to mindfully choose fewer higher quality, sustainable pieces.
It’s also worth mentioning that every time you wash man made materials (including those made with ocean plastic), such as polyester, the wash cycle tears apart the garment and releases micro plastics into the water stream, contributing to pollution in the oceans. Most sustainable companies do their best to avoid this, while also having fair labor practices, so why not buy sustainably?
Love this list, love your style, thank you for bringing this to your readers!
Yes! Thanks for mentioning this. Even items made of recycled plastics are doing this, and we have no way to clean up these micro plastics. I am now avoiding all clothing made of plastic, even if it is made from recycled materials.
I have just bought a Guppy Bag to wash my already owned synthetics in (captures all the micro plastics). And trying my best to not purchase raw plastics in the future! Such a terrible issue
Please….do a post about these “guppy” bags!
Brands that sell globally too!
Remember, your readers live all across the world, not just in LA, let slone just in the USA. Think BIG EHD Team, think big-ger.
Fantastic post! One of the main reasons why I’ve decided to not buy any new clothes this year and make them myself instead. Another great company is Marine Layer-they take your unwanted tee shirts at $5 per shirt (up to $25 credit) and break them down and use them to create whole other garments! They have some super gorgeous stuff!
OOH. i’ve personally never heard of it, will check out right now. thank you!
Great great article!! ThredUP also has a goody box where they select used clothes for you. You pay $10 initially and then pay for only the clothes you select. Bc thredup can be overwhelming!!! And amore vert is a good sustainable brand
Love love this roundup! Thank you so much!!
Amour vert is another sustainable brand. Madewell takes your old pair of jeans to use for insulation and you get $20 off a new pair.
I am most baffled by the water consumption… Why? How could it be needed?! And saddened by the exploitation of workers. Thanks for shining this light. Add to your list the beautiful and oh so practical jumpsuits of Tom Foolery. They are sustainably made of recycled water bottles collected in Haiti.
I am most baffled by the water consumption… Why? How could it be needed?! And saddened by the exploitation of workers. Thanks for shining this light.
Add to your list the beautiful and oh so practical jumpsuits of Tom Foolery. They are sustainably made of recycled water bottles collected in Haiti.
Fortress of Inca and Huma Blanco are also great fair-trade shoe brands!
What should we do with clothes that have holes/stains/really worn or old intimates? I don’t donating would those be a good option. I think donating and wearing more sustainable clothes is a good step, but are there places that recycle clothes that can’t be reused?
THIS. My boys blow holes in every pair of pants they get; I’ve put patches in but those don’t last (and they’re growing so they can’t wear them very long). I’ve heard about the H&M recycling program so am gathering a bag of un-donatables. Anything else to do with holey, stained kids’ stuff??
Emily -all these companies sound thoughtful, thanks! Here’s a plug for the Slow Fashion movement – remaking clothes or mending not just making more new. Here are two ideas:
1) Take one look at the gorgeous book Mending Matters by Katrina Rodabaugh and you will swoon.
THE most stunning jeans ever with her super cool mending/art. Sure your readers have other ideas in this space they follow, love to hear them!
2) We used to gather about 15 friends together for “clothes swap nights” – you gathered up all those things you just never wore but that were completely fine, and brought them. Someone made cocktails and then one by one someone would stand up and hold up the dress/top/ sweater and talk about it. Then whoever jumped up first “won” it. One person’s hot pants mistake was another’s dream shorts. No more closets loaded down with guilt. Super fun women’s night. Hilarious stories. Impromptu modeling. Anything not spoken for went to our local shelter donation room. Win win win
Love this! I’m going to do it!
I know it must be hard to post everyday, but thank you! Thank you for staying so engaged and a really big thank you for this post!! I loved hearing about businesses and what they are doing to help Mother Nature.
Good round up! I’m passionate about this topic. OZMA of California makes the most amazing minimalist clothing out of beautiful natural fabrics like silk noil and linen. For affordable cotton basics Pact is good. Jungmaven has great hemp tees. And summersalt is another good swim option.
I also love Lo & Sons’ recycled poly bags. I travelled with one for 4 months straight on the road with their “Hanover” bag (and my matching Rothys) – it still looks new and gets lots of compliments!
There’s a fantastic sustainable, woman-run, locally-manufactured company up here in Seattle called Prairie Underground that makes wonderful, edgy clothes, primarily in organic cotton and hemp.
will definitely check them out! thank you!
I have really tried to embrace the “less is more” ethos, because probably the most environmentally friendly choice is to just buy less. I’m also a huge fan of resale sites like Poshmark and the RealReal. I just have to comment about Everlane, since they’re at the top of the list and perhaps the most well known out of the brands listed. My experience with the company, their customer service, and their product was really poor. And they did not let me review the items I purchased which may explain why the reviews skew so positive. I guess I will have to try some of these other brands instead!
Check out Prairie Underground up here in Seattle: run by women and dedicated to sustainable practices and local manufacturing. They have really unique pieces in organic cotton and hemp.
Thank you for this article! It’s an issue a lot of people try to ignore because they think they can’t afford to buy responsibly. These companies prove otherwise!
this was a great post. In general, I think this is a very important topic. I was particularly appreciative of the info on thredup. I signed up right away, finding out you can donate there too. I always donate my clothes to Goodwill and had not realized that a lot of that could go to landfill! The other brands you highlighted were mostly new to me, so that was great too. I can’t wait to try Kotn, I need good tee shirts. Some of my favorite clothes of all time were the clothes handed down from my mother when I was 15. Beautifully cut wools, silks and suedes. Not designer, just “good” clothes from the time. The conversation around sustainability is always good to have. Every little change adds up. I have been thinking a lot lately how we got to be a disposable society. My parents and grandparents recycled or chose items that they used and kept for a long time for economic reasons, so they were very careful on their purchases and focused on buying high quality items meant to last. The glut of inexpensive stuff shifted the economic choice for consumers to cheap things that are made… Read more »
AAAUUGGHHH!!!!! Please don’t throw clothes away (landfill)! At Goodwill, and other places as well I’m sure, they accept textiles to be recycled. Anything that is too worn, stained, gnarly, whatever- to donate, you can bag it up and mark the bag”Textile Recycling” and it is recycled into stuff like insulation, carpet padding, etc
May I add to the proselytizing for Rothy’s: they are hands-down the most comfortable shoe I have ever owned. Slowly, as my other shoes give out, I’m replacing them entirely with Rothy’s. Because of the material, you can throw them in the wash – they last SO much longer than any other flats! I love them so much. Can’t fit my weird toes in the pointy toe ones, but I’m obsessssssssed with my leopard loafers. Leopard is a neutral, yes?
Oh yay good to know!! I have had my eye on these guys for a while and glad to hear someone vouch for them 🙂
This is mostly accessories (similar I think to Raven & Lily-great pick btw) but I also like the Noonday Collection. Certified B corp and Fair trade! It provides a stable business for craftspeople (mostly women!) around the world. If you follow their instagram you can actually see the people making your necklace, earrings etc. Definitely a nice option!
As I am waiting for Salvation Army to arrive, I have to admit: My closet is so full, I really need to stop retail therapy *sigh*. I can vouch for clothes making you feel better. When I have a day of anxiety-insecurity-doubt-etc. I usually wear something I truly love and know it makes me look good and feel confident. My mood will follow shortly thereafter….always works!! I think I will look for a sewing class to teach me how to modify my current clothes so they look different and newish/stylish in order to recycle my clothes myself.
I love this post! I love many of these brands and discovered new ones. I’m making an effort to be much more thoughtful about the items I add to my wardrobe.
My first day of preschool, i wanted to wear my green and white dress with my favorite pink sweater. My mother insisted on the white sweater. Knockdown, dragout fight = first memory of my mother. And it didn’t stop. Nope: third grade I didn’t want yellow, or lace, or flowers. I wanted a particular, very expensive appliquéd dress. Fight in aisle five! Then there was fifth grade when my mother could not, would not believe I wore a size 7 shoe, so she bought size 6, and I couldn’t get my feet in them. Oh, and the camel blazer incident! What screams ‘cool’ more than a camel blazer?
Sigh. World class parenting, not.
This may be why, with my nieces, on their birthday I buy them exactly what they want. Exactly, and I don’t check pricetags.
is the Vetta model Courtney Robertson who won the Bachelor season in Sonoma CA?
Look into Kelly Slater’s company Outerknown, the women’s collection just came out this year! Sustainable materials and fair labor practices
Really nice post, Ryann. I like the information (I’m in love with the Kotn Undercoat, thanks for that) and your voice. The Guardian UK had a similar article this week on recycling clothing.
I’ll add Eileen Fisher to the list – she’s using recycled fabrics and organic fabric in some of her clothing. And she encourages people to return their old EF clothing to her for recycling. And her clothing sizes fit more diverse body sizes, which is a good thing for many of us.
This is a great article. It’s well written and very informative. Thanks for sharing the names of companies that are striving to protect our environment. I am so proud of you and your generation for recognizing the importance of this issue. We can do so much more than just reusing, reducing, and recycling. You gave me some great tips on how I can do more.
Kowtow! A NZ brand, makes the most beautiful and comfy clothes https://nz.kowtowclothing.com
Tonle is company from San Fran and Cambodia using remanent fabric and operate a zero waste supply chain. They have recently opened a store I believe (I’m in NEw Zealand but you people in SF should check it out). Also Kowtow is a NZ company that uses all organic cotton, local merino and has a completely transparent supply chain.
I appreciate your bringing awareness to the issues inherent in the fashion industry. More information and awareness will hopefully promote change among both consumers and companies.
This website is helping for more information, not only for fashion brands but home and interiors etc too: https://ethicalfashioninitiative.org
Some fashion companies that may be less well known:
thank you for this post! I am trying to be more sustainable about my fashion choices and some of these brands are new to me. It’s easy (for me anyway) to get depressed and discourage about how much waste is going on and how it’s affecting our environment, but it’s encouraging to see brands out there doing what they can to make a small difference, and hopefully all those small differences add up to something much bigger!
Allbirds is another great sustainable shoe company. And their sneakers are absolutely amazing. So comfortable. I never want to own another brand.
I second Reformation!
I’m also surprised Amour Vert didn’t make the list! They have the softest most amazing t-shirts I’ve ever felt and that aren’t see-through!
Possibly one of the most informative posts I’ve ever read! Being informed is the only way to begin to solve this issue. But less – choose minded companies – recycle! Thank you!
Some great Canadian brands that follow a sustainable model and fair practices are: Poppy Barley for shoes and boots; Encircled which makes awesome comfy clothes — think dressy sweatpants, leggings, soft T’s; Free People make beautiful shirts and other items; and my personal favourite — Korinne Vader — who makes beautiful linen dresses, tops, pants, etc. ALSO, because the Canadian dollar is NOT on par with the American one right now — I think we are at 70%, you will spend about 30% less US. So go have a look!
I made a mistake above! Not Free People… correct to Power of My People!
Allbirds for casual athletic shoes
Elizabeth Suzann for loose fitting basics that are offered in a range of sizes
Taylor Stitch offers clothing for men that uses a lot of deadstock fabrics and a pre-order manufacturing model to limit overproduction waste. My husband buys most of his clothing from TS and everything is high quality.
Oh my gosh you have to try Meg at megshops.com. She is doing so many things right! Women owned, American made, sustainability initiatives and donates to great causes! Oh a loads of her stuff is machine washable!!!
You should also check this Spanish brand: http://countingclouds.es