It's not uncommon to learn about the problems in the fashion industry and be compelled to make it better for people and planet. But starting a brand requires a lot of work, flexibility, patience, and most of all beautiful, quality product that people want to buy. Getting to this point is challenging and often unclear, so we try to feature brands who are doing regularly so you can get a peak behind the scenes of what it feels like and what challenges to expect. Here's a look into the Canadian based brand Poème Clothing and our interview with Founder, Connie Howes.
The holiday shopping season is the most important time of year for building sales and brand awareness. We are 2 weeks to Thanksgiving and 6 weeks to Christmas which means it's now go time for getting into gift guides and holiday press. Have you started pitching press yet? You better be. Here's how to secure press for holiday shopping.
Finding the right factory can feel impossible and that's just the beginning. Once you actually find that factory, how do you know they are operating at the standards you need to ensure worker safety? Most professionals do not know the right standards to look for to properly vet a factory's social compliance. That's why at THR3EFOLD we only work with factories who have an ethical certification to ensure their standards are up to par and continually checked in by an outside auditing body. Each ethical certification can vary slightly in their minimum standards, but all revolve around the following set of principals.
Growing a brand takes a lot of work and you wear a million hats. With so many time sensitive deadlines, it can feel overwhelming to slow down and train new team members so you can delegate some things off your plate. However, by not training your team members properly you actually miss out on optimizing their role to its fullest potential, or worse, they could be doing tasks that are counter productive to your growth goals and actually set you back. Here's 5 Tips to train new team members.
By Ellen Saville, Creative Director, The Endery
A large contributor to fashion's waste problem is the pre-consumer textile waste also known as fabric liability or deadstock fabric. Tons and tons of deadstock fabric is collecting dust in factories and ateliers around the world and if we start sourcing it, it could begin to reduce the amount of raw materials in demand and therefore the strain we put on the planet. One of the easiest categories to implement this strategy is knits, since deadstock yarn is still unspun and much easier to mold into the designs you need. "We see leftover production materials happen in real time, to the tune of at least 15+ tons of yarn per year in Peru alone," says Ellen, who has spent many years working production in Peru. This experience prompted her to create a solution with her newly launched deadstock sweater brand The Endery co-founded with Kelly Phenicie.
It has become a sad joke in the fashion industry, that if you want to see what colors are trending for the season, just look at the color of the river next to your garment factories. As fashion is finally working to make changes to be more ethical and sustainable, the textile dyeing process is one of the biggest areas with cause for concern. The standard dyeing process requires tons of water, energy, and chemicals. In response, the Chinese government has been cracking down and "in the summer of 2017, tens of thousands of China’s factories were forced to close and undergo environmental inspections." (Melody M. Bomgardner) In fact, "60% of China’s denim-dyeing chemical capacity has been shuttered, equal to roughly 30% of global capacity." Dalton Cheng says, Cheng heads a digital textile printing facility which offers a great alternative to reducing chemical and water waste, but we were curious what natural dyeing options there might be. We are introducing the alternative options to dye textile in the sustainable ways which focusing on the way to reduce use of chemicals.
By Ellen Saville, Creative Director, The Endery
Manufacturing overseas has it's advantages when it comes to artisanal skill, resources, and even reduced costs. However, before you get started it is essential to consider the cultural differences and production nuances so you are best prepared to form a great working relationship with your new factory.
"According to the Ocean Conservancy, in less than 10 years, scientists predict there will be 250 million metric tons in the ocean and by 2050, there will be more plastic in the oceans than there are fish" (Independent). You may hear about our global plastic epidemic on a daily basis, but do you actually know what you can do about it beyond carrying around metal straw? Sustainable business can feel a lot more overwhelming since the consumer side of the conversation is more common, but that doesn't mean that sustainable business solutions don't exist. To make it easy, we've put together a sustainable fashion brand checklist for you to be plastic free in 2020.
Climate week preemptively kicked off with a bang as hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets to protest for better climate action. As fashion is slowly waking up to the very real issues we've created for people and planet, sadly but not surprisingly most governments are still slow to make any real changes that create a more positive impact.
Building a fashion brand is hard and most people who undertake their own label can tell you they had no idea what they were getting into when they begun. To make it slightly easier we like to spread the wisdom. So here's our interview with the founder of Poplinen at a look behind navigating the supply chain and creating a brand that is based on ethical and sustainable practices as well as body inclusivity.