WHAT IS ETHICAL FASHION?
The fashion industry causes a great deal of damage to the environment.
Cheap clothes and accessories produced quickly by sweatshop labour (fast fashion), which you can find in most large retail stores, may save you a few dollars, but is extremely expensive to our long-term future and our planet. Large-scale pollution is unsustainable, and so is fast fashion.
However, the fashion industry has operated this way since the 1950s, with the rise of the textile industry and the growth of big companies who thirsted for profit above all else.
Today, still, large businesses do not prioritise the environment above the shareholder. They continue to pump out their products and turn them into cash as quickly as possible. Such wide-scale damage does not affect just remote people in remote places. Inhumanity and environmental damage affects us all.
This is not the price we should pay for a capitalist system.
If, until now, you have been an unassuming consumer, you may be surprised if you take a closer look at the labels on garments currently hanging in your closet. There is a 90% chance that any one of those garments has been produced in a third world country, where workers slave away for long hours under unsafe conditions for pitiful wages, without periods of rest or vacation. In many cases these workers, a lot of them women and young children, are subject to harassment or sexual abuse.
As the western world has woken up to these conditions and the damage done by fast fashion, large companies have slowly begun to improve this situation, but in many cases these measures do not go far enough.
HOW CAN WE BE ETHICAL?
Fashion is considered ethical when the rights of humans and animals are not violated and when the environment is left as undamaged as possible. From the first textile to the final garment, ethical fashion complies with all moral standards such as:
Ecological, economic and social.
Offers consumers a tool to reduce poverty through their everyday consumption practices. It offers producers a better deal and commercial terms and promotes fair wages.
100% cruelty free products which have been made without the use of any kind of animal leather or derivatives. At Velvety believe that a product or item can't be ethical if it's not vegan.
Raw fibres that grow without human intervention. Organic agriculture excludes the genetic modification of organisms and the use of pesticides, fertilizers, and insecticides during the production stage to reduce the negative impacts of chemicals on the soil, the health of workers and also final consumers. Examples of organic materials in the fashion industry are organic cotton, bamboo fibre and the newer fibre, tencel.
Recycling and ecological use of resources
Recycling, upcycling or simply minimizing the impact of negative energies in the environment, reducing the consumption of water, energy, etc.
Contributing to the development of projects that improve the quality of life in certain communities or supporting artisan techniques, handmade products, etc.
So please, before buying any product, have a look what it says on the label. Think twice about whether you are supporting an ethical or an unethical practice.
HOW IS VELVETY V-ETHICAL?
Our business focuses on products which have been produced on a low or medium scale following a fixed standard. At Velvety, we guarantee that each and every one of the products we promote are vegan and ethical, and all our brands work to provide a sustainable product. Some of our brands even give life to new products from other waste products or the use of organic fibers.
V-ETHICAL means that we believe in Vegan+Ethical products not only in ethical products. We truly believe that a garment can't be considered ethical if it has been produced using innocent animals to make it. Animals have a voice and we have a commitment: to be their voice.
Velvety also aims to have a minimal impact on the environment and ensures that all material used, such as craft paper for our packaging and stationery in our office, is 100% recycled or sourced from sustainable materials and companies.