Eco-friendly fashion brands in Manchester
Ethical, sustainable fashion is a hot topic. We are all aware of the shocking conditions found in factories around the world, with fast-fashion ever on the rise and stores with prices lower than you think possible, hopefully it is finally becoming apparent that someone, somewhere is paying. What is less well-known but equally as devastating, is the consequences of the fashion industry on our planet. Being the second most polluting industry after oil due to the amount of resources used and carbon emitted, fashion is having a direct impact on climate change.
Over the last few years, more and more eco-fashion brands have emerged and a ‘slow fashion’ movement has been born. Here are a few Manchester based fashion brands with a conscience:
Otter & Goat
Founded by a young couple living in Manchester who share a love for nature and travel, Otter & Goat is an organic, eco-friendly and sustainable clothing brand home to a blend of intricate prints and well-crafted garments inspired by organic living, nature, travel and the countryside. Using quality materials such as organic cotton, bamboo and wood fibers as well as working with ethical, climate neutral suppliers, Otter & Goat strive for sustainability. The hand-drawn illustrations on their garments are drawn by London based artist, Jennie Webber. Otter & Goat also work alongside Manchester based charity Made With Hope, who are providing Tanzania with resources they desperately need, such as orphanages, schools and water supplies; every item of clothing sold, Otter & Goat donates £1. The name Otter & Goat represents their imaginary animal counterparts.
Born in Manchester in 2008, Beaumont Organic is now an international ladieswear brand with chic, yet simplistic designs, whose mission is to create ‘Contemporary Conscious Clothing,’ and they do just that. Using organic, fair-trade and eco fabrics, Beaumont Organic aims to produce clothing that respects the planet, that consumers can be proud of wearing. Being responsible and sustainable is at the forefront of their values and they ensure to produce ethically with as little waste as possible and aim to keep carbon emissions low. Beaumont Organic has also set up a Foundation that supports the people of Taveuni, a small Island in Fiji, providing the children with school necessities and medical supplies. They donate 1% of their annual profits to the Foundation every year.
Attempting to bring Manchester back to the hub of textile and manufacturing it once was and disapproving of fast-fashion factories, Community Clothing is a cooperative that uses empty factory space in the UK during quiet parts of the year to provide jobs for skilled workers, focusing on employee welfare and working conditions. Manufacturing all of their clothing in the UK, their aim is to help restore pride in British made clothing and textile communities and create opportunities for those working in the industry. They also use great quality materials and pride themsees on their suitably sourced fabrics.
There are other shops in Manchester with a similar ethos, such as Mrs Bears clothes swap shop & Junk who upcycle old clothes. When looking to shop ethically, keep your eyes peeled for organic fabrics, recycled materials, charity partnerships, terms such as slow fashion or eco fashion, brands who are open about their supply chain and show care and thoughtfulness about the world and the impact they're having on the planet.