Lowie's Ethical Practice
Posted on November 22 2012
Lowie takes its ethical stance very seriously and is proud to be working towards making sure our products have a low impact on the environment and that the people that make our products are happy and paid fairly.
What raw materials do we use?Organic cotton and recycled cotton yarns have been used for the spring and summer collections for the last 4 years. Our customized caps are made from end of line fabric which would otherwise have been thrown away and they are hand-customised with bows and flowers in our London studio. Our leather belts are made from azo free, banzadine free and chrome 6 free leather, essentially meaning that there are less chemicals than normal in the tanning process.
Lowie is encouraging overseas manufactures to source more eco-friendly wool yarns for the winter collections. ‘Although eco-friendly manufacturing is currently more difficult, letting our manufacturers know that customers are prepared to pay a premium will encourage them to provide us with the raw materials and processes to protect our environment’.
Lowie also asks its suppliers to use the minimum amount of plastic bags and packaging and all marketing materials are printed on recycled papers or from sustainable sources.
Who makes our product?
Knit and crochet – Our hand-knit and crochet ranges are made by villagers in a little seaside town in Eastern China. The current trend in China is for young people to go to the city, usually leaving their children with the grandparents and only seeing them for 2 weeks a year. By allowing the knitters to work from home we are helping to keep families together and preserve traditional village life. Machine knit ranges are produced in a small family-run workshop owned by Andy Wong and his son Anthony in Dongguan. The product is produced on hand-looms, using little or no electricity, except in the linking (seaming) process. The workers are all paid fairly, work relatively ‘normal’ hours and have smiles on their faces. We've been there ourselves just to make sure.
Leather belts – the majority of our leather belts are made by in a small workshop in New Delhi, India run by Ricky and his brother, who have approximately 20 men and women working for them. Any metal trims such as buckles, studs and eyelets are sourced in the bustling lanes of Old delhi.
Customised caps – Using end-of-line fabric sourced in London, the base caps are made by Adnan and his wife in Izmir, Turkey. Our hand-made flowers and bows and stunning sequin pieces are hand-stitched in our London studio.
Vintage scarf range – Our vintage scarves are individually sourced, mostly from the UK. The bags, purses and hats are individually cut by Adnan and his wife in Izmir, Turkey.
What can you do?
In moving toward eco-friendliness, the brand will be asking customers to handwash all wool items instead of dry cleaning which uses chemicals that are extremely harmful to our environment. Handwashing also prolongs the life of the wool garments and gives it much softer texture. We have a repair service in the London studio with spare yarns from all or our past collections. So if you have a hole that needs fixing we’d be more than happy to repair it for you for free – it’s all part of our ethos of prolonging the life of your beautiful Lowie garment, because we believe that ethical fashion is good quality product that lasts.