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Who made my clothes?
It’s a question we should all be asking, but few can answer. Can you imagine who made your clothes? Where they live, if they have a family, what kind of house they live in? Do they have enough food, can they pay their bills?
Before our clothes arrive on store shelves, they have been on a long journey passing through the hands of cotton farmers, spinners, weavers, dyers, sewers and others. An estimated 75 million people work to make our clothes with 80% of them being women the aged between 18 and 35.
Sadly, the majority of the people who makes clothes for the global market live in poverty, unable to afford life’s basic necessities. Many are subject to exploitation; verbal and physical abuse, working in unsafe and dirty conditions, with very little pay. This video below highlights some of the injustices faced in the industry.
Many brands use a complicated network of suppliers to make their clothes. Instead of the brand employing makers themselves, they pay factories who employ makers, meaning the brands aren’t responsible for the health and safety of the workers.
When we ask brands, “Who Made My Clothes?”, it makes them publish the information of the suppliers they give money to, and this helps organisations like Fashion Revolution to monitor the wages, safety, and all human rights issues of the factories that makes clothes for big brands.
How do you know if your’re buying clothes made under fair working conditions? Well, at Cariad Babi we have already been through an in depth process of choosing our brands, so can shop safely knowing that every product has been carefully considered before it arrives on our shelves.
Certifications are a good way to identify clothing that has been made to an high standard, having been through an extensive process to address both ecological and social issues across the supply chain. These include GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard), Fairtrade, Oeko-Tex, Peta certified vegan, Soil Association and Fairwear. There are more too, including an index designed to assess a stores environmental impact: read more here. There are questions you can be asking brands, and we encourage that you do before deciding if they’re something you want to support.
In our next blog, we show you two of the brands we choose to stock and why: Piccalilly and Ecopipo. Read here.
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