Winter is here and that means it’s time to think about sustainable winter jackets. As with other parts of the fashion and apparel industry, there are two main domains of sustainability to consider: environmental sustainability & social sustainability
Fashion and apparel companies use certified organic materials to signal their commitment to environmental sustainability. Some of these companies also use deadstock fabric that would otherwise go to waste, and upcycle fabric or fibers of fabric from vintage clothes that would otherwise end up in landfills.
Companies with Fair Trade-certified products have undertaken to ensure that their arrangements with the people who produce their clothing are not founded on exploitation of low-wage workers, particularly in developing countries. The Fair Wear Foundation is another example of a standard of social sustainability and ethics in production.
If you’re looking for a sustainably-produced winter jacket, here are 8 companies that define transparency and the quest for sustainability.
1). People Tree
People Tree is an award-winning Fair Trade fashion label with ecommerce, wholesale, and retail operations in Britain and in Japan. Founded by social entrepreneur Safia Minney in 1991, the company was a pioneer in sustainable Fair Trade fashion and it has remained true to this vision for three decades. Today, People Tree makes every product to the highest ethical and environmental standards start to finish. People Tree works with Fair Trade producer groups to create a well-designed collection that respects people and planet.
The company provides design and technical assistance to help marginalized artisans and craftspeople overcome the barriers to selling their products, pays producers a fair price, offers advance payment when needed and commits to a long term partnership. People Tree sets best practice standards in sustainable garment production and is GOTS, FLO and WFTO certified.
Armedangels is a company that loves beautiful, eco, and fair products. The company’s mission is to combine fair working conditions and sustainable, high quality materials with beautiful design. Instead of chasing the latest trends, Armedangels focuses on modern, contemporary collections: Fair Fashion instead of Fast Fashion. For Armedangels, “eco” is more than a trend: it’s a belief and a responsibility. Accordingly, they only use sustainable & regenerative materials such as organic cotton, organic linen, organic wool, recycled cotton, LENZING™ ECOVERO™ and TENCEL™ Lyocell. They have been GOTS certified since 2011. Armedangels also believes in responsibility toward everyone involved in manufacturing their apparel. They work with Fairtrade and the Fair Wear Foundation.
Rifò is an emerging brand of clothes and accessories, specializing in high-quality circular fashion. The company produces high-quality products, 100% made with upcycled textile fibers and made in Prato, Italy.
Thanks to a mechanical and craftsmanship process called upcycling textile fibers, Rifò can turn fabric leftovers into new accessories and clothes with identical qualities to the original products. This process was developed in the textile district of Prato more than 100 years ago, and it allows the company to upcycle the leftovers and sensibly reduce the amount of water and chemical products used in the production.
JAROD-PI is a French brand with a specific message: curating quality clothes, faithful to the company’s activist approach. The brand’s mission is to dress without harming. Every day, JAROD-PI works to improve production methods by conceiving products which respect all living things. Rejecting disposable clothing as an obsolete concept, JAROD-PI has imagined a new way of consuming fashion: extra-limited quantities, 50 pieces (no more, no less) produced on demand, whatever the year or season. The company is similarly uncompromising in its choice of materials and providers. Their partner workshop was selected for its meticulous, environment friendly work and conveying the French know-how which remains a proof of excellence.
The brand goes even further in its approach by turning to new materials from the “recycle & upcycle” movement: waterproofing coating made from recycled plastic pulled out from the ocean, dyes and fabrics meeting European standards, organic cotton, etc. To move away from the clichés of organic and outdated fashion brands, JAROD-PI invests in innovative and above all cruelty-free materials. Jarod-π has been certified by PETA, Animal Free, ECO-AGE Brandmark & Fur Free Retailer and undertakes to donate a part of its profits to associations that support animal and environmental causes.
5). Amalya Meira
Each Amalya Meira piece carries a fable, and process is paramount. That’s why the company’s pieces are created using Zero Waste construction-repurposed vintage textiles mingle in strange harmony with hand printed mohairs. Sun stroked silks and leathers are printed with the playful science of Cyanotype-Maternal sterling silver adorns closures, while hand crochet softens. The Amalya Meira vision is one of clothing as wearable sculpture.
Andagain is the world’s most sustainable, luxury fashion label. All of the company’s garments are made to order in New York and use deadstock and recycled materials.
7). Hera Studio
Hera Studio was born from the desire to create more authentic fashion, one that has a positive impact on the planet and in which aesthetics and consciousness coexist in a balanced way.
It seeks to create garments that tell a story through the materials, the silhouettes and the people that created them; garments made to exist in this era. With each collection, Hera Studios seeks to experiment and use different techniques to create conscious clothing without sacrificing their passion for bold colors and cool prints. Everything is design and ethically handmade in Ecuador.
8). Lobao Studio
Lobao Studio’s collection is 100% MADE IN SPAIN by local factories and artisans, who create well-made and long-lasting products. The company’s team inspects each detail of production to ensure responsible and ethical practices.
The ready-to-wear selection’s paramount achievement has been the use of natural fibers and European yarns which guarantee the high quality that Lobao strives for. Its functional design, effortless style, natural attitude, and social awareness are some of its star attributes.
Lobao’s first clothing collection was designed and commercialized in 2015 and since then the company has been cultivating new designs each season. Lobao’s contemporary perspective of traditional methods has created both a cutting-edge and a sustainable brand. In 2019 the company presented an online platform and spread its philosophy throughout various markets.