Did you know, that the environment is changing every time when a new piece of clothing is bought? In fact, “the textile industry is one of the largest polluters in the world. The World Bank estimates that almost 20% of global industrial water pollution comes from the treatment and dyeing of textiles.” ( Sustainable Communication org. )
We already discussed what the sustainability is in our first blog with Enkel Basics. In this blog post, we will investigate what actual actions a conscious company can take in order to ensure our environment and workers are treated better. We raise the question-how it is new compared to how it was done before?
This is how Enkel Basics produce sustainable t-shirts:
“We use the term “From Farm to Closet” (below) to describe our brand, because we do everything we can, in order to make every step of the production sustainable.” (Maja, Co-founder of sustainable fashion startup Enkel Basics)
“Cotton. Starting with the cotton farming, we use organic cotton over conventionally grown cotton. The cotton used to make one regular T-shirt contains up to 18 grams of chemicals from insecticides and pesticides. Organic cotton farming uses none of these chemicals.
Chemicals. Obviously handling raw cotton without these chemicals is much safer for the farmers, pickers, yarn spinners and fabric knitters.That is already 4 steps of the process that is positively changed by making one simple choice.
Excess water. When we dye our fabrics, we do not use any heavy metal dyes, formaldehyde or chlorine bleach. Also, all the excess waste water from the dyeing plant has to be treated, which, believe it or not, is not common practice within the fashion industry.
Employees. When we were choosing the final cutting and sewing factory, we decided to work only with factories with high CSR standards- no child labor, always paying a living wage and the right to join a union. Our T-shirt factory actually gives their female employees 4 months maternity leave, which is more than most women get in the US. These standards are controlled by an independent entity rather than by us, which means that there are no cases of looking through the fingers with issues.
Timeless design. We try to make our designs timeless and not influenced by trends, so you can wear our clothes again and again and always look well dressed. In comparison, fast fashion brands make between 4 and 12 collections a year, which only leads to over-consumption — we want to do it differently and skip this seasonality all together.” (Maja, co-founder of Enkel Basics)
To conclude, it is a complex process for fashion companies, but they do have a choice to make a difference. So do shoppers. In the final blog post about sustainability next week, we will investigate what is ethical consumerism in the fashion world and how different companies can help fashion shoppers find their right choice and fit of the desired garment. Finally we will ask Enkel Basics for their future plans- what else can be done out there to make sustainable fashion the new fashion.
To catch up with Enkel Basics, read #1 Blog post “Enkel Basics. A new way of fashion.”