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4 STEPS TO A GREENER CLOSET
Being conscious with your fashion choices goes way beyond forgoing the latest trends, which is why sustainable brands are on the rise. In fact, even some of the longstanding designer brands we all know and love are changing their business models and designs in an effort to become more sustainable. Ahead, the best sustainable menswear brands proving sustainability and fashion can go hand in hand.
A brand that likely needs no introduction, Veja trainers have garnered a cult following after being seen on the feet of style stalwarts Eddie Redmayne and Benedict Cumberbatch. But did you know Veja is also one of the most sustainable brands in fashion right now? Since 2005, Veja has been making trainers differently, infusing each stage of production with a positive impact. The cotton comes from an organic farm in Brazil where workers don’t have to worry about harmful pesticides poisoning their villages, while the rubber is natural and sustainable. Veja is also a certified B Corporation, meaning it underwent a third-party audit and “meets social sustainability and environmental performance standards.” Another key to the brand’s sustainable success lies in its approach to advertising. Veja doesn’t. At all. The money Veja saves in advertising costs (which it says typically takes up about 70% of a big trainer brand’s expenditure) it puts back into buying environmentally friendly materials that are purchased according to Fairtrade principles.
Durability and longevity have always been part of the renowned fashion brand, GANT’s DNA. Since 1949, GANT has designed timeless pieces that are not only made to last but also inspired by classics that never go out of style. Further to their efforts, GANT has also published a number of goals in their stride to become a greener business. Some of these include: by 2022, GANT’s cotton will be 100 per cent sustainably sourced, by 2025, GANT will reduce its water use in manufacturing by 50 per cent and in the same year, the brand’s key materials will be 100 per cent sustainably sourced. By buying 'better cotton' products from Gant, you’re supporting responsible cotton production and more sustainable farming practices, through the organisation, Better Cotton. Through this membership, better cotton is sourced via a chain of custody model called mass balance. This means that Better Cotton is not physically traceable to end products, however, Better Cotton Farmers benefit from the demand for Better Cotton in equivalent volumes to those the brand sources.
The Inis Meáin Knitting Company sits perched near the edge of Ireland, at the mouth of Galway Bay. With a population of just 180, it may not seem like a likely location for a luxury fashion brand but since its launch in 1976, Inis Meáin has become an international beacon of knitted design and simple luxury. Inspired by the island’s spirit and heritage and driven by sophisticated design and quality craftsmanship, their designs range from traditional fishermen sweathers to modern half-zip polo shirts. Style credentials aside, Inis Meáin has pioneered slow, sustainable fashion for decades, with each piece made in Ireland in their workshop studio on the island which currently employs 21 people. What’s more, the brand chooses not to mass-produce. Instead, they specialise in small runs of new styles to cut down on waste. Outside of their designs, Inis Meáin has just completed a full solar installation for their workshop and studio, which will ensure they are self-sufficient for power for most of the year. All lighting has been converted to energy-efficient LED, and they use an electric van to transport goods and materials to and from the ferry and small island airport.
SHOP INIS MEÁIN:
INIS MEÁIN Ombre Crew Neck Sweater
INIS MEÁIN Cable-Knit Crew Neck Sweater
INIS MEÁIN Striped Cropped Sleeve Sweater
INIS MEÁIN Boiled Wool Scarf
INIS MEÁIN Ribbed Button-Through Cardigan
INIS MEÁIN Half-Zip Knitted Polo Shirt
Swedish brand Nudie Jeans has put environmentalism at the heart of its ethos from the get-go. The denim brand’s motto is ‘Lagom’, the Swedish phrase for ‘just the right amount’. Which, coincidentally sums up the label’s approach to environmentalism, wanting to make sure that their use of the world's resources is balanced and fair. Not only are the majority of the label’s jeans made from 100 per cent organic cotton, but Nudie Jeans also offers to repair its designs for free. Plus, customers can now recycle their old, worn-out jeans through Nudie Jeans' Rebirth initiative, which turns secondhand materials into new products such as denim bucket hats and other Scandi-chic pieces. Better yet, the brand doesn’t just stop at environmental sustainability but also places human rights and the well-being of the people that make their clothes at the heart of their strategy.
SHOP NUDIE JEANS:
NUDIE JEANS Jerry Vintage Denim Jacket
NUDIE JEANS Charles Mariniere Long-Sleeved Top
NUDIE JEANS Chuck Button-Down Summer Shirt
NUDIE JEANS Lean Dean Slim Fit Jeans
NUDIE JEANS Franke Logo Hoodie
NUDIE JEANS Gritty Jackson Straight Leg Jeans
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Shopping sustainably isn’t the only small change you can make. Discover a delicious plant-based diet at Dublin’s Hottest New Vegan Café.