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Journal

The Difference

The Difference

Are you wondering what makes our tees different than the ones you see at Target and H&M? I’m Jenny Hwathe founder of Loyale and I’m here to share what sets us apart:

  • Virtuous workmanship, timeless design, superior fabrics and giving back are our founding ideologies.
  • There is a disconnect between people coveting locavore and artisanal fare, while having considerably less conviction about where the items in their wardrobe originated and who crafted them. Apparel companies have been lethargic with transparency, so we’re looking to apply the same principles the slow food community has embraced.
  • We take “Made in the U.S.A.” to the next level by offering detailed information about what goes into making a Loyale garment. We source the best quality materials from sustainably run Japanese mills for our classic silhouettes and they’re ethically cut and sewn at a worker-owned cooperative in North Carolina.
  • We design classic wardrobe staples that you’ll reach for on a daily basis, in an attempt to be a relaxing wardrobe choice that eliminates decision fatigue. It’s our philosophy that an easy to assemble wardrobe allows you to spend less time getting dressed and more time pursuing worthwhile endeavors. 
  • Taking our socially responsible objectives a step further, we spotlight 501c3s and $2 from each garment sold is donated to nonprofits making a positive impact. 

The power is in our hands; each of us can change the fashion industry by shopping less and when we do, let’s support ethical fashion purveyors. We can also begin asking our favorite brands - who is making your clothes, what are you doing with your fabric waste (our scraps are recycled!) and how are you contributing to make the world a better place?

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Stop the Madness

Stop the Madness

Burberry has burned $116 million worth of their own inventory over the last 5 years to 'protect their brand.' Thankfully after serious backlash they've vowed to end this practice; we learned more about this disturbing company policy and turnaround via the NY Times:

"Politicians, campaigners and other critics rounded on Burberry. Kirsten Brodde, who heads the Detox My Fashion campaign at the environmental charity Greenpeace, said that Burberry “shows no respect for its own products and the hard work and natural resources that are used to make them.”

With many customers, particularly younger shoppers, becoming more ethically and environmentally conscious, the practice was becoming increasingly damaging to Burberry’s image.

Finally, the company said on Thursday that it would stop destroying unsold merchandise, adding that it would also stop selling products that used real animal fur."

Read the full article here...

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Swap, Don't Shop

Swap, Don't Shop

Chances are you have 1 to 30 garments in your closet that you don’t wear. These lifeless clothes are taking up space and messing with your feng shui. With fall around the corner, now is a great time to consider doing a purge.

Today is National Second Hand Wardrobe Day and here are a few simple steps you can take to be environmentally and financially smart about decluttering:

  • Host your own clothing swap; click here for tips from Real Simple
  • Check out one of our fave IG accounts @selltradeslowfashion to list and sell your high quality ethical pieces. 
  • Make a donation to Goodwill, Dress for Success, the Salvation Army or the Vietnam Veterans of America; don’t forget to get a receipt for a tax write off.
  • Take photos of all your garments, create a Google photo gallery and share the link with family and friends on social or via email; as items are claimed delete the pics, ask folks to pay for shipping via Venmo or PayPal or even better, arrange a happy hour to drop off the item in person.
  • Sell your clothes online with thredUP or Poshmark

Photo credit: Eli & Barry

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What is Fashion Revolution Week?

What is Fashion Revolution Week?

Five years ago, the issue of where our clothes come from went from being a matter of curiosity to something more urgent. It was on April 24, 2013 that the Rana Plaza disaster occurred on the outskirts of Dhaka in Bangladesh; more than 1,130 people died after the factory building in which they were working collapsed. The disaster galvanised Carry Somers and Orsola de Castro, co-founders of Fashion Revolution, into action. Fast-forward to now and it has grown into the world’s largest global fashion activism movement.

Their campaign is simple. They are urging the industry to take more responsibility and show greater transparency in the supply chain. If brands do not know what is happening in the factories that supply them, if is difficult for them to improve conditions. Fashion Revolution asks one question: who made my clothes? By holding our favourite brands to account, it is possible to create change that minimises the risk of such a disaster recurring.

From The Guardian

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52 Fashion Seasons vs. 4 = Waste

52 Fashion Seasons vs. 4 = Waste

Americans now dispose of about 12.8 million tons of textiles annually - 80 lbs. for each man, woman and child. Why? Fast fashion.

Retailers like Zara, Target, H&M, Walmart and Forever 21 expedite the design development process to get more clothing in the hands of consumers quicker and at a very low price. It results in close to 52 fashion “seasons” per year instead of 4.

In order to meet such high demand, something must be sacrificed and unfortunately, that sacrifice is often related to the quality of the garment, its effect on the environment, and the human lives involved in the production process.

Fashion should not come at the cost of degrading the environment and human life. We’re encouraging everyone to recognize, the power is in our hands and we can make a difference simply by putting thought and compassion into what we buy.

We develop seasonless collections with classic designs that can be worn anytime of year, plus all of our styles are ethically crafted with the best, made to last materials, so you can look good and shop responsibly.

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What is Eco-Friendly + Ethically Made Clothing?

What is Eco-Friendly + Ethically Made Clothing?

We’re kicking off 2018's Fashion Revolution Week by asking you to consider who made your clothes and what is the true cost on them and the environment? We know getting a deal feels sweet and it can be a budgetary challenge to invest in high quality clothing, but our shopping habits come with serious consequences. Consider these factors before your next shopping expedition:

Less is More
As a global population, we already consume more than the earth can sustainably support, and while our wardrobes are only a small part of this picture, it would be naive to think that our appetite for fashion doesn’t have a significant impact. It is estimated that clothing accounts for 3.4% of global greenhouse gas emissions, so our wardrobes are an important sustainability consideration. In order to live sustainably, we need to move beyond our desire for consumption, and see shopping as functional activity rather than a pastime. Wardrobes full of impulse purchases we hardly wear are a wasted resource. So what do we do if we are bored with our current selection and desire a change? Let's be honest, we all love to buy something once in a while, and there isn’t anything wrong with that. But we need to take a closer look at our closets. Instead of expanding into more closet space, we need to make a deal with ourselves that we will maintain or reduce our current wardrobe size. Gift, swap, re-purpose, or donate items you don’t use that often to make space for something new.

Quality not quantity
The current fashion system churns out poorly made, low quality items that are designed to be discarded almost as fast as the shops change their selection. The average party top is worn 1.7 times before being discarded. If our wardrobes are going to be sustainable, we must choose to invest in quality pieces and ignore the allure of purchasing several cheap items instead. Inexpensive purchases are often bought under a false illusion - you feel as though you are getting a bargain. But when you add up the cost of buying several cheap items that wear out quickly, it is often just as economical to invest in one quality replacement that will last a decade. It is also worth remembering that today’s cheap fashion will be landfill tomorrow, but today’s quality items will be tomorrow’s vintage finds for someone else to love.

Fair trade or ethically made
With the great majority of clothing production occurring in countries with poor records on workers rights and protection, conventional fashion has a high social cost. These social costs include health conditions (including terminal illness) due to chemical exposure, workplace injury and permanent disablement due to poor safety protections, the use of child labor, and excessive working hours. There have even been cases of slavery in the production of products headed for Western markets. Fairtrade certified clothing is produced in conditions that ensure that workers labour under fair conditions for reasonable pay, and buying Fairtrade certified clothing is the best way to ensure that your purchase does not contribute to the exploitation of vulnerable workers. It is reasonable to assume that clothing produced in Western countries has ensured that workers rights are protected. However, the common practice of using factory out-workers has provided an avenue for some exploitation to occur on home soil. In these cases, it is best to do your research before assuming that the clothing is produced under fair conditions.

Natural and low impact dyes
Conventional chemical dyes have a huge environmental impact, especially in countries where environmental standards for industry are lax. In places such as China, it is common to see brightly coloured rivers flooded with the runoff from industrial textile dyeing. In fact, there is a joke in China that you can tell what colours will be in fashion next season by looking at the colour of the rivers. When buying new clothing, chose fabrics that have been coloured with low impact or natural dyes. Textiles that have been GOTS certified (Global Organic Textile Standard) are a good choice, as the certification system requires the use of low impact dyes and has strict requirements for the protection of the environment. Choosing fibers that are already pigmented is another option, which eliminates the need for dying at all. It is possible to buy organic wool, cotton and silks that naturally come in selection of colours. If you are adventurous, you can also try your hand at eco-dying with botanical materials such as tea leaves and beetroot peelings.

Organic natural fibers
Synthetic fabrics are derived from petrochemicals, and apart from the carbon impact of their production, they are a finite non-renewable resource and cannot form a part of a sustainable wardrobe (unless of course they are purchased secondhand or the fibers are recycled). When sourcing clothing made from new fibers, synthetic materials should be avoided. Natural fibers are a renewable resource, but unless they are organic, they too can have a significant environmental impact. It is estimated that around 16% of all insecticides and 25% of pesticides globally are used in conventional cotton farming, and several of these chemicals are known carcinogens. Organic and rain-fed cotton offer alternatives which avoid or reduce these significant impacts. Similarly, organic wool ensures that livestock farming practices use land management techniques take care of the environment. Clothing certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) are guaranteed to have met a high standard of environmental and social care in their farming and production.

Article credit: Tortoise and Lady Grey

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Eating as If the Planet Mattered

Eating as If the Planet Mattered

You all know by now, food plays a huge role in the Loyale world. In honor of Earth Day tomorrow, we’re spotlighting Food Tank’s five high-impact actions each person can take to eat as if the planet mattered. Examining ways we can be more thoughtful about the way we approach food is great place to start being more eco-friendly and expressing love for the planet…

Tailor your portion sizes

A study by nutritionists found that pasta dish portions at popular U.S. take-out, fast-food, and family restaurants are almost five times bigger than the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s recommended personal meal sizes. Taking extra food home from restaurants and using portion size guides can help you regain control of your meal sizes.

Waste less

Globally, 1.3 billion tons of edible food is wasted every year. This equals more than two tons (or 4,000 pounds) of food per hungry person every year. Eating all edible parts of fruits, vegetables, and meat, finding creative uses for food past its prime, and using food storage solutions are a few ways to waste less food.

Eat a more plant-based diet and refine your meat consumption

Even moderate dietary changes in the direction of a healthful plant-based diet can significantly reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease. It can also help reduce each person's greenhouse gas emissions by up to 55 percent and food-related water footprint by up to 36 percent. When eating meat, refine your meat consumption and choose products from companies who are striving to be socially and environmentally responsible like Organic Valley and Niman Ranch.

Eat low on the marine food chain

Eating large, predatory fish at the top of the food chain, like tuna or cod, carries dramatically higher environmental impacts than eating fish that feed on plants, insects, or plankton, like tilapia or sardines. Seafood purchasing guides and trying sustainable seafood recipes can help reduce environmental impacts.

Eat forgotten and endangered foods

Diversifying your diet with new fruits and vegetables and eating natively grown foods are a couple ways to help preserve plant species that are resilient to climate change and other threats, including drought, insect pests, and diseases.

Photo credit: Brooke Lark

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Ethics | Is 20 Cents an Hour Fair?

Ethics | Is 20 Cents an Hour Fair?

Running a company with ethical practices isn't easy, but it's the right thing to do. Did you know the average garment worker in Bangladesh earns about $0.20/hour and Chinese workers make around $2/hour. First world shopping habits shouldn't stand in the way of fellow humans being able to secure food, shelter, clothing, health care, transportation and other necessities of living in modern society. April is an important awareness month, we'll be celebrating Earth Day on April 22nd and Fashion Revolution Week From April 23rd to 29th. We're kicking the month off with a picture of Eulusia, our talented sewer at Opportunity Threads, crafting one of our tees because for us it's essential to know #whomademyclothes. She makes a living wage and is one of the owners of the worker-owed factory we collaborate with. Take a peek in your closet and consider the origin story of each piece, do you know who made your clothes and in what conditions? Food for thought...

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