If you’ve been following along on Instagram, you know that I’ve been rolling out a new project in collaboration with Boston photographer Joyelle West.
Each month I’m featuring a series of sustainable fashion brands — some that were past Factory45’ers — and others that I wear, use and love.
This is all in an effort to help integrate more ethical and sustainable fashion into the multi-million dollar Instagram scene where, for the most part, fashion bloggers and “influencers” are touting fast fashion and cheap deals.
As part of this project, I’ll send out monthly emails to highlight some of the brands that I’ve featured, as well as the stories behind them.
(If you’re a sustainable fashion brand that would like to be featured in this project, you can get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org)
So, without further ado, here are the July products:
SOTELA | REMY DRESS
In 2016 Factory45’er Hanna Baror-Padilla launched Sotela, a body-positive womenswear brand, with a fully-funded Kickstarter campaign.
In the past two years, she’s grown a loyal customer base by championing body appreciation, natural beauty and focusing on fit rather than size labels (the brand never references small, medium or large).
All Sotela garments are made of eco-friendly fabrics that have minimal environmental impact, such as tencel and modal. And every piece is handmade from start to finish in their California studio.
Hanna recently announced that she’s opening her own LA-based factory so that Sotela will operate under a vertically-integrated production model. And the factory will manufacture for other independent brands with similar business values.
My favorite thing about the Remy Dress (pictured above) is the button-down front that is breastfeeding-friendly. This dress is my go-to when I’m out with the baby and need to look put together.
You can shop the Remy Dress and the newly launched Sand Collection here.
VETTA | THE SHIFT DRESS
VETTA is another Factory45 brand that was founded by Cara Bartlett in 2016. With the help of a Kickstarter campaign, Cara launched “The Ultimate Capsule Collection | 5 Pieces = 30 Outfits” and raised nearly $90,000 to fund her first production run.
Since then, VETTA has gone on to release five more capsule collections in colors and styles that can be mixed and matched to make an easier, more thoughtful wardrobe.
The woven garments are sewn by a family-owned factory in New York City and the sweaters are knitted by a production partner in Los Angeles that runs on 70% solar power.
VETTA has been featured by Vogue Magazine, Conde Nast Traveler, Who What Wear, The Wall Street Journal and has won the Sak’s Fifth Avenue Emerging Designer Showcase.
My favorite thing about The Shift Dress is the versatility of creating multiple outfits. As pictured above, it can be worn as a dress or you can unbutton the top from the skirt so the top can be worn alone.
You can shop The Shift Dress and all of the past capsule collections here.
NISOLO | SMOKING SHOE
I’ve been wearing Nisolo footwear since the brand first launched in October 2011. Back then it was a lot harder to find ethically-made shoes than it was to find clothing.
Nisolos are handcrafted by artisans with a lifetime of experience in shoemaking, having been raised in the center of the shoemaking capital of Peru. According to the company’s impact report each shoemaker earns 27% higher than fair trade wage requirements, as well as health care and a safe working environment.
All of the leather is sourced as a byproduct of the meat industry, which means that the leftover hides are being used instead of wasted. It also means that no animals were killed for the sole purpose of creating the shoes.
Nisolo is committed to a transparent supply chain by introducing each of their factory partners in detail and publishing an annual impact report that can be read here.
My favorite thing about the Smoking Shoe is how high quality it is. I knew as soon as they arrived in the mail that I would be able to wear them forever. It was a timeless investment purchase that I could feel good about.
You can shop the Smoking Shoe and other Nisolos here.
To see the rest of July’s featured products, come on over to Instagram by clicking here.