Our consumer habits affect the environment is a concern that many people have on their minds as the climate warms and landfills fill up faster than before. We are aware that under capitalism, there is no real ethical consumption. We also know that the great bulk of the world's carbon emissions are caused by a tiny subset of businesses. We know that rampant materialism is heading us to a dark place and that buying less and more carefully is a vital individual action that we should all be taking.
But what about those who create the goods we purchase?
Clothes have the ability to be environmentally harmful or considerate at every stage of the journey. It doesn't matter if that applies to how designs are conceived, how fabrics' raw materials are cultivated or procured, how clothing is made, or even the packaging that is used when it is delivered to retailers or your door. There are many factors to take into account, and frequently more goes on than what is disclosed on a company's "sustainable page," which is becoming more and more common.
In a system and environment that are so based on an exploitative manner of doing things, how can a brand select where to concentrate its efforts? How do you handle people's —environmentally disastrous —expectations about what clothing should cost if your garments end up costing more? Is the idea of sustainable fashion in its entirety just more greenwashing? Or is it a method for us to feel better about the fact that we're still making unnecessary purchases? There is a lot to discuss about this.
In the paragraphs that follow, I'll give you an overview of some of the top sustainable Australian clothing brands, both recent startups and well-known names in the industry.
Despite my bias, I believe that Australia is home to some of the top sustainable fashion companies in the world. The days of ethical fashion being limited to linen shift dresses and basic pieces in various beige colours are long gone, and we now have an abundance of sustainable Australian clothing brands
In addition, these sustainable Australian clothing brands are doing excellent work with transparent supply chains, employing eco-friendly materials, and creating reduced impact styles, despite the fact that there is no such thing as 100% ethical and sustainable fashion.
TOP SUSTAINABLE AUSTRALIAN CLOTHING BRANDS
Project Bowman is a locally produced slow fashion brand that aims to incorporate sustainability into their business from the beginning. The brand was established in 2020, while Melbourne was still grappling with the epidemic. Amber Rigney and Bella Nolan, the company's co-founders, have concentrated their efforts in a few areas, including materials, regional production, and waste reduction. When it comes to sustainable fashion, timelessness of design is another crucial factor, and Project Bowman's designer Rigney gets it. The clothes themselves vary between being dreamlike and useful.
On the other hand, Boody is an Australian lifestyle fashion company that has been actively involved in sustainability for a long time. The family-owned business was established back in 2012, years before eco-friendly apparel became the in thing. It produces some of the coziest, softest sportswear we've ever slung on our legs. Boody focuses on their materials, making their clothing out of bamboo and organic cotton. They stand out as a clear anomaly in the already crowded market for athletics made from recycled plastic bottles, so give them a try if you're allergic to polyester.
Swimwear is a sector where it's easy to panic buy something trendy or shop online, only to find out it's not quite right, doesn't fit, or stretches and sags too easily. HAKEA SWIM is a swim one of the best sustainable Australian clothing brands that aims a little higher than that closet shelf where you keep your poorly chosen summer items that you only wear for a season.
HAKEA uses the tough Econyl fabric, which is becoming more and more well-liked and is created from leftover fabric from fabric mills, ocean trash, and fishing net scraps. You'll be wearing these swimsuits for a lot longer than your frilly cow-print one-piece since, like Project Bowman, they concentrate on designs that err on the traditional side.
Z. The Label
This ethical fashion brand from the Gold Coast focuses on classic, useful, and simple looks. All Z. Recycled materials are used to create the pieces, which are manufactured from natural fibers found all around Australia. And new mothers should rejoice because every item in the line is suitable for breastfeeding!
The Social Outfit
One of the most distinctive sustainable Australian clothing brands is The Social Outfit. They are an ethically-minded social enterprise with independent accreditation that offers work and training in the fashion industry to members of the refugee and new immigrant communities. Beautifully designed clothing and participation from over 300 people in their sewing school, digital print projects, creative initiatives, and fashion events are the end products. You print enthusiasts should read this.
Through his collections of fine art that are manufactured to order, Gary Bigeni challenges the boundaries of fashion as a means of personal expression. On eco-cotton that has been sourced responsibly, Gary painstakingly hand-paints creative artwork. The artwork is then created in extremely small quantities using green manufacturing methods. All items are gender neutral and made to represent the unique personality of the wearer. They are meant to last a lifetime.Gary Bigeni was always creative, even when he was a small Maltese boy living in Sydney, Australia, with his mother, three siblings, and sister. In order to make collections for his GI Joes and Barbies, as a young child, he would break into his mother's wardrobe and cut sizable circles out of the bottoms of her dresses. Years later, Gary Bigeni founded his own label and established himself as a member of the Australian fashion cohort after completing his fashion training at East Sydney Tech.