Never has there been a better opportunity to take a pause than Fashion Revolution week this year, with huge orders cancelled by big companies and a pause on the whole industry, this might be our best chance to stop the seasonal fashion calendar and switch to a more seasonless, timeless and sustainable approach to fashion design. We have the chance to think of more ways to give back to our communities and educate those around us about how we can all work to bring about this change to the industry.
This moment in time is also a huge opportunity for small independent brands, whilst larger brands who are dead set on sticking to fast fashion that runs season by season or even week by week struggle to maintain this already extremely broken and faulty system, we have the chance to pivot and take advantage of huge gaps that will be left in the market once this is over as people seek to do things differently and come together to make the industry a much better place.
It has always been extremely important to Josh and I to put strong ethical codes and sustainable practices at the very core of our label; from the very inception of the label we have embedded these into the business at every possible opportunity we have seen.
For me, it has been extremely important to have strong ethical codes and values, worked in Indian fashion industry; working for everyone from high street brands to one of the country’s biggest couturiers, I have seen firsthand the seismic negative effects that the fashion industry has on people’s lives. We keep hearing more and more stories of people working 16 hours a day, being subject to unsafe working conditions and having their skills devalued and under-appreciated as they are stretched past their break points, all whilst being used as a marketing ploy. These stories I have seen with my own eyes but the situation in the fashion industry is universal in that these conditions are rampant within every country.
Josh is very passionate about sustainability and building a future that respects both people and the planet, particularly growing up with a very strong interest in nature. Put together, we think we make a very good team and our shared view allows us to build a code of practice in our business that is holistic in approach.
We are very proud, particularly as a small independent label, to currently be meeting 9 of the UN’s Sustainable Development goals and as we grow, we look forward to getting better and being able to do more to give back and lead by example.
Goal 1 No Poverty & Goal 8 Decent Work – we are extremely proud to work with a supply chain where everyone is paid a living wage.
Goal 3 Good Health & Goal 12 Safety & Responsible Production – we ensure that everyone in our supply chain works in safe and hygienic workplaces where they are protected from accidents.
Goal 4 Quality Education – We are committed to ensuring our customers learn more about how we can all create a better fashion industry together. Our hand weaver’s scheme also supported widows, some of whom used some of their living wages to send their children to school.
Goal 5 Gender Equality and Women Empowerment & Goal 10 Reduced Inequalities – We are committed to ensuring that women are paid equally for equal work in our supply chain. We also created a project we called ‘The Weaver’s Project’ where we employed Naga hand weavers from Edward’s home state of Nagaland who were all widows, we paid them a living wage and created a capsule collection with their work. We were very proud to support them and help them on their journeys whilst supporting their artisan-ship.
Goal 7 Affordable & Clean Energy & goal 13 Climate Action – We are very proud to have almost completely eliminated electricity from our production process, drying all of our hand marble dyed fabrics in the natural heat of the sun. We only use electricity for stitching. We also use AZO free dyes for our solid colour fabrics.
As we continue our journey, we hope we will meet every one of you on our way to achieve our common goal.