Style With Substance – Episode Three Fashion That Gives Back
All Images: Love Brand & Co.
In episode three of Style With Substance we take a look at how fashion gives to charity. We chat to Oliver Tomalin, Founder of Love Brand & Co. about how it feels to give back.
Episode Three – Show Notes
Welcome back to episode three as we continue to discuss the Myths and greenwashing that surround Sustainable Fashion. This week we discuss fashion brands that do more than just give to charity. Their entire ethos is built around charitable giving and raising awareness. We often hear about brands who donate to charity. Buy this t-shirt and save the planet, buy this tote bag and we’ll donate some money to solve world hunger. Rarely are brands created with the sole purpose of giving back.
How Does Fashion Give To CharityHave you ever been suckered into buying a charitable t-shirt? On the promise that 20% of profits went to a charity, we felt better about buying another t-shirt we didn’t need. But the picture isn’t as clear as it seems. To begin with, 20% of sales profits isn’t much. A lot of fast fashion and luxury brands could afford to give a lot more that than from their own pockets. Second, who made that t-shirt? If it’s making a charitable donation to a human rights fund, then you have the right to ask how the garment workers were paid and treated. Not to mention whether or not the cotton farmer got a fair deal. Some brands definitely don’t cut the mustard here. If this makes you feel uncomfortable then the simple answer is to either give directly to the charity instead, or to support a small business with a difference.
Love Brand & Co.Love Brand & Co. Is one such company. After a chance encounter with an Asian Elephant through the charity Elephant Family, Oliver Tomalin came up with the idea of supporting Elephant conservation through a swimming trunks label. Fast forward 10 years and Oliver’s company are a proud member of 1% For The Planet. If you’ve not come across it before, the organization was co-founded by Patagonia’s Founder Yvon Chouniard, and these guys love to give back to Mother Earth. Any brands that join are partnered with vetted charities that benefit the earth and help to combat the climate crisis. Love Brand & Co. is proud to work with Elephant conservation charities around the world through 1% for the Planet.
Oliver is passionate about raising awareness, while creating great products. What started with swimming trunks, has turned into a full blown mens apparel label. Sustainably sourced linen shirts, with nut buttons, organic cotton polo’s and of course the swimming shorts make up a very stylish selection. The shorts themselves are made with recycled polyester and they use an innovative eco printing technique with uses paper that can then be reused. They even use carbon offset initiatives when you purchase, so you can be sure that your footprint as a consumer is minimal.
Has this conversation fired you up to include more charitable giving when you shop? Here are a few other brands who are making donating money too dam easy.
- Rites – This is a preloved platform with a difference. Donate luxury fashion pieces to sell and Rites automatically make a minimum 20% donation to charity from your sale. It’s as easy as that.
- Ninety Percent are not only an uber cool casual wear brand that is totally perfect for any lock down situation, they also donate you guessed it, 90% of their distributed profits to charity. You can even vote for which charity receives your donation.
- Patagonia are the OG’s of giving, Patagonia have been donating 1% of sales since 1985. And more recently they gave $10 Million dollars back to the planet, which was the money they saved in US tax relief.
- Toms shoes have moved on from their initial one for one giving model, they now donate a third of net profits to organisations around the world. Currently that is to their own COVID-19 Global Giving Fund, created to help existing Giving Partners who are responding to the pandemic.
- Allbirds, the sneaker brand beloved by Leonardo Dicaprio, are partnered with Souls4Souls an initiative that supports micro enterprise programmes in developing countries. They donate gently used trainers to be resold in local markets, helping people to lift themselves out of the cycle of poverty.