SUSTAINABILITY

WHAT IS SUSTAINABILITY?

Efforts to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.


WHY IS SUSTAINABILITY IMPORTANT?

Textile production is one of the most polluting industries, producing 1.2 billion tons of CO2 equivalent (CO2e) per year, which is more emissions than international flights and maritime shipping

- - - Ellen MacArthur Foundation


In 2013 alone, 15.1 million tons of textile waste were created. The majority of this waste ends up piled up in landfills. This is the result of our obsession with fast-fashion.

We understand the huge impact designers can have on the future of fashion and more importantly, the attitudes of the consumers. Each person has the opportunity to do something, whether it is one small daily habit change or thinking through the life cycle of the products they’re producing. Read this article about fast-fashion.


WHAT SEW VALLEY DOES:

Sew Valley is a community of designers, entrepreneurs, product developers, pattern makers, stitchers, fit experts, knitters, weavers, textile experts, merchandisers, buyers, stylists, photographers, tech and digital gurus and we’re growing!  

One thing we all have in common is our shared effort to work towards a sustainable future for ourselves individually, our community, the brands we work with and of course the planet.

We tackle these issues first by starting small within our staff and facility.

  • Living wages

  • Low to no use of single-use paper/plastic packaged items

  • Recycling program with designated bins for each type of recyclable

  • Easy signage posted throughout the facility to encourage positive habits whether it’s related to recycling, waste or other material sourcing information

  • Compost bins and participation in a community garden

  • Ordering supplies and raw materials on an as needed basis

  • Weighing and calculating our client projects waste for further analysis

  • Encouraging clients to minimize their packaging and plastic use for shipping

  • Education and introductions to resources for designers to source responsibly

  • Low water consumption use

SV SUSTAINABILITY GOAL:

Reduce waste to 5%  landfill generated per project 2021. Reduce the amount of raw materials through recycling and reusing the remnants from projects. We aim to give each client a percentage of waste for their projects.


WHAT YOU CAN DO:

Sew Valley is committed to helping start-ups and existing businesses navigate the complexities of what sustainability means within the context of the fashion and apparel industry and how you can start implementing good business practices for your brand.  

It doesn’t have to be a huge overhaul. You can start simple. By including these values into the foundation of your business, it will help make your business decisions easier and will likely broaden perspectives, and drive industry change as consumers continue to ask more about what their products are made of, who made them and how they impact our planet.

As a Business this means taking into consideration:

  • well-being of staff

  • waste reduction

  • water consumption

  • energy efficiency

  • ecological impact

  • transportation habits

  • green marketing

  • product line efficiency - closed loop system



RESOURCE LIST

Fabric resources we love

Fab scrap
Queen Of Raw
The New Denim Project
Helpsy

Podcasts

Business of Fashion
Conscience Chatter
Green Dreamer
How I Built This

Books

Elizabeth Cline - - Over Dressed
Kate Black - - Magnifeco
Kate Fletcher - - Craft Of Use
Michael Braungart and William McDonough - - Cradle
to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things

Naomi Klein - - This Changes Everything

Sourcing Resources + Organizations + Info

BF+DA
Center for Sustainable Fashion
Common Objective
Ellen McArthur Foundation
Fab Scrap
Fashion Revolution
Fibershed
Greenpeace
Sustainable Fashion Coalition
Sustain Your Style
SFI Cincinnati
Zero Waste Daniel

Recycling Resources

Earth 911
EPA
Terra Cycle

Tools to Start building a Sustainable Brand

Guide to Sustainable Strategies by The CFDA
Sustainable Strategies Toolkit by The CFDA
Sustainable Fashion Starts with Ethics and Design by Barbara Gongini


How to create a sustainability manifesto:

CFDA - - Create Your Brand Sustainability Manifesto
CFDA - - Guide to Sustainable Strategies
CFDA - - Sustainable Stratefies Toolkit
Common Objective - - 5 Steps to Creating A Sustainability Manifesto