UrbanLandfill loves Loomstate.
So we were ecstatic when they agreed to a 9 question interview based on their Sandy relief work in relation to hard-hit costal communities and their continued commitment to sustainability.
UrbanLandfill’s 9 Questions for Loomstate:
- Super Storm Sandy caused devastation in at least four states, and hit especially hard waterfront communities along the Northeastern coast. Loomstate has partnered with Waves For Waters to help with the efforts to clean up the aftermath. How did the partnership begin, and how has Super Storm Sandy affected Loomstate employees?
From offering space in our warehouse, attending weekly planning meetings with Waves for Water, working with Fashion Girls for Humanity to fundraise, to volunteering out in Long Beach and Rockaway, we are very emotionally connected to the Sandy recovery effort. Jon Rose, founder of Waves for Water, is also a good friend of Loomstate’s founders Rogan Gregory and Scott Mackinlay-Hahn. It has been incredible to see organizations, companies, and individuals working together toward the same goal. Thankfully, none of our employees have sustained any long-term damage to their homes, but we do look forward to getting our surfing beaches and friends’ homes along the coast back in shape.
2. Along with providing hands-on help, Loomstate has created Sandy Recovery Tees. One hundred percent of the proceeds of the sale of these tees go directly to Sandy relief efforts. Where did the design of the tees come from, and how was the decision made to give all the proceeds to relief efforts?
Yes, we currently have an organic cotton Sandy Recovery Tee available online that donates 50% to Waves for Water and 50% to Food Bank for New York. We have been involved with both of these organizations and know first hand what amazing work they are doing! We encourage you to tweet to @Loomstate_org with questions about getting involved.
3. Sustainability and philanthropic efforts often go hand in hand. Many companies have their own foundations, focusing on an issue near and dear to their hearts, such as ethical responsibility, recycling programs, and fair trade initiatives. Does Loomstate have a foundation, or does the company lend itself to causes as they arise?
Our relationships happen organically – we like to have personal connections to a cause and the people behind it to ensure that we are supporting something in the most effective way. Most of the organizations we work with are in the environmental realm, from organic cotton farming to youth sustainability education programs (like Teens Turning Green) to surf-infused projects (like Waves for Water and Stoked Mentoring).
4. The Sandy Relief Bill that only recently passed in Congress was delayed for months, and includes ﬂood insurance payouts for those that were directly affected by the SuperStorm. How does Loomstate feel about the delay of funds?
Just like everyone else. We are hoping for a package that is sufficient in supporting those affected by Sandy. Though out of the media, the physical and emotional recovery process is going to take a long time and this package will help.
5. The Sandy Recovery Tees are imprinted with ideas of restoring, rebuilding, reviving, and returning. What do the ideas showcased on the Sandy Recovery Tees mean to Loomstate as a company?
Our slogan is “We return to our favorite beaches to rebuild fallen homes, restore lost energy, and revive dampened hopes”….to return to our favorite beaches once again. The Loomstate office is full of surfers and those that care deeply about the environment, as well as our local community. It is a statement that we will be here to help throughout the duration of the recovery process, until we can once again return to our favorite beaches for a surf!
6. There is a current debate amongst those who follow sustainable fashion about the impact of using organic fabrics that originate from the same country the company comes from. Do the fabrics that Loomstate use for their collections originate from America, and how does that make a difference for the company?
At Loomstate we primarily source cotton from locations within the United States and India. Organic cotton supports local environmental health, fair wages, clean water quality, and a number of other community benefits, so when it comes down to making the right sourcing decisions Loomstate looks for reliability, knowing that we are already well covered in terms of sustainability. Going local is great, and we try to do it as often as possible. But shipping a large amount of cotton in an ocean going vessel produces less carbon per piece of clothing than trucking smaller amounts of cotton grown here in the US. Organic is about being a good neighbor, and treating other’s soils, souls, and economies as our own, both locally and internationally.
It is also the case, and particularly with organic cotton, that developing countries have the most to gain. Supporting small landholders in going organic opens more economic opportunities for those families.
7. The majority of sustainable and ethical clothing companies are geared towards women. There is a smaller but growing demographic that’s calling for ethical basics for men. Will Loomstate have a mens basics collection, or will the company have a unisex collection?
8. Fast fashion clothing companies have a high turnover of clothes, and tend to use conventional fabrics as a means to keep costs down. Loomstate is a smaller, more focused company that prides itself on using organic fabrics such as cotton and Tencel, a new sustainable ﬁbre. Why use organic fabrics when conventional fabrics are cheaper?
Choosing fiber based on price will ultimately sacrifice quality. Loomstate is not willing to do that. We set out to create quality, e.g. soil quality, water quality, environmental quality, economic quality. We do this through purchasing and supporting the manufacturing of the best quality materials we can find, e.g. 100% certified organic cotton, Tencel, and up-cycled fibers.
9. The unique distinction of Loomstate as a company is the ﬂuid designs that comes from collaborations and the Sandy Relief Tees. How does the design cycle work for Loomstate, and how do collaborations come about?
We love to collaborate with creative people and companies that are like-minded. Collaborations generally come through personal relationships and friends of the company and our founders.
It’s an odd idea, it seems, to have resolutions once a year. One would think you’d do it continuously, creating and improving upon yourself as time goes on. Here in America it seems that resolutions come only after you’ve had a hard night of drinking and are feeling the hangover from hell.
But resolutions, in whatever situation they come about, are a necessary thing. They give you a goal, present a challenge, and help you to realise what you want, and what you don’t.
So. Here goes.
URBAN LANDFILL’s New Year Resolutions:
1. Write at least three posts a week. (We all knew this was coming, didn’t we? Blogging is most often thrown aside when it’s not the main source of income. Tragic. But it is the truth. But when it’s something you are passionate about, you make twice the effort.)
2. Build a wardrobe based on the principals of sustainable design.
3. Enjoy – and report on – the different aspects of environmental and sustainable design that companies, brands, and people incorporate into their work.
A small list, but an important one.
Case in Point: Stella by Stella McCartney, the new, more affordable (but no less elegant) lingerie line.
The line, which includes five different types of bras, robes, and different patterns and colors, was designed for a “nearly nude wearing experience.” It’s meant for everyday wear, and not to be a hindrance.
A woman who designs for women will always find an audience, regardless of the economic climate.
Such is the case for Frock L.A., a Los Angeles-based clothing company founded in 2009. The sustainable principles it lives by (most of all, ‘Waste Not, Want Not’) have only seemed to strengthen the creative team in building clothes based on tailoring and a demanding look at what women want.
Who ever said kimonos were out of date apparently has not heard of Ms. Wood.
The Portland, Oregon based designer has been inspired by the Japanese kimonos since 2007. Since the beginning of her beautiful collection, she’s expanded to offer leather accessories, shoes, and bags.
While her sustainability would never be questioned (her husband, a wood maker, takes care of all things, well, wood and the leather comes from in and around Portland), her attention to the tailoring of the kimonos is most impressive. Ms. Wood’s collections, seen as ready-to-wear and on the runway, are as beautiful as they are versatile.
Stella McCartney is a woman who I truly admire, not only for her ethics and innovative designs.
So when I heard she teamed up with LeSportSac (for a second time!) to do another collection this season, I had to check it out:
This are just some of the new pieces the British designer has made for the All-American handbag company.
McCartney, one of fashion’s most forward thinking designers, is a vegetarian and refuses to use animal products in ANYTHING she does (her skincare line, simply named CARE, is made with absolutely no animal by-products). In the past, she has teamed up with Adidas, H&M, and Chloe. Her ability to produce provocative and feminine designs have made her one of the most sought after designers of our generation, and her ethics have led to a gigantic wave in eco-conscious fashion.
LeSportSac, which has been upping it’s profile in the last couple of years with collaborations with Jonathan Adler, Diane von Furstenberg and Gwen Stefani, was founded in 1974 and has contained all of the manufacturing processes in the USA. They, too, are socially responsible, and the continuation of the collaboration between these two powerhouses is not surprising.
This year, as well as last year’s collection, is whimsical and features all recycled and eco-friendly constructs (i.e. – The body of each bag is constructed out of 100% Recycled Eco Polyester and lined with 100% Eco Mesh (also polyester) and comes in the signature dustbag, which is biodegradable).
I, among others, hope to see this collaboration continue throughout the years.