Wednesday, April 17, 2013
Tracking my eco/ethical fashion label journey #1 Feelings of despair
Tracking my progress & sharing my findings
At the moment I am in the process of starting my ethical/eco clothing line. I plan to share my experiences, thoughts, tips and disasters with you, so you can track my progress! .... and perhaps help to prevent you from making the same mistakes.
The beginning stages - Finding the fabric
For the last year I have been working towards this goal of getting my ethical/eco clothing designs out there. I started with screen printed tote bags and I am now moving onto clothing .... well I am trying to. I believe so strongly in the eco/ethical production of textiles and have therefore been trying to source affordable eco/ethical textiles. This process has been a little more challenging then what I had initially envisaged. I was ready with my designs before Christmas... it is now months later and still I don't have the fabrics.
I did find a local wholesaler, but they have massive delays on their fabrics. So my plans have come to a screeching halt. It is also frustrating as the communication is not great from the company. One problem is that these companies are newly established themselves, so they are probably on a steep learning curve too. Sustainable fashion is not a mainstream concept yet, so there are not a great deal of stores which stock affordable eco fabrics, so the pickings are slim. But I am still optimistic and feel that it is the right way to go. For the moment, I have come up with a short term solution, where I have ordered fabrics from a UK distributor. It is a little more expensive for the particular fabrics that I want, but a less time wasting option. Plus the people at the shop are great! And I have ordered other types of fabric from them too. If you are looking for some affordable organic and ethical fabrics, then I would recommend this shop. Their communication is good and they send products fairly quickly. Here is a link to Organic Cotton.
Watch this space for ongoing updates of my progress!
Has anyone else had similar experiences? Perhaps it is difficult to source second hand fabrics in your city (it is in Berlin). Or you do not have an organic fabric store close to where you live. Or, like me, are you waiting and waiting for stock (materials or clothing) to be available.
What challenges have you faced on the ethical/eco/sustainable front?