The Facts: Ethical Clothing

Ethics is the philosophical study of the concepts of right and wrong. As children, we are taught the difference between right and wrong; or at least we should be. As adults, we use what we have learned and apply it to the decisions we make in everyday life. We might not always get it right, but for the most part, living in part of a modern, forward thinking culture means we are able to abide by the law of the land, respect others’ religious beliefs, and generally do the right thing. So where does ethics fit into the world of fashion?

What is Ethical Clothing?

Ethics can be applied to everything. Wildlife conservation, politics and even the arts: there is no part of modern life that is not governed by the principles of ethics, including fashion. But what exactly is ethical fashion and how do we know we are buying clothing from an ethical clothing company?

Clothing design and manufacture is big business. Millions of dollars are spent on clothing, including garments, shoes, and accessories, but whilst there are hundreds of big name fashion names vying for our attention on the high street and online, the vast majority of them don’t pay much attention to ethics when creating their garments.

Ethical clothing covers a wide range of different issues, but in simple terms, it means taking an ethical approach to the manufacture and design of clothing.

The Price of Fashion

Unethical clothing companies are only interested in the bottom line. They buy the cheapest materials, use the cheapest manufacturing methods, and price their garments accordingly. So if you buy cheap clothing from discount stores, it is worth remembering that there is a very good reason why it’s so cheap. Or in other words, the fabrics are made from non-organic materials and the garments are sewn in sweat shops by employees subjected to unsafe and unfair working conditions.

Taking Care of the Next Generation

Ethical and sustainable clothing companies such as Lavender Hill Clothing go to great lengths to use ethically sourced raw materials and monitor the supply chain at every stage in the process. They don’t compromise on ethics just to increase their profit margins. Instead they make sure any companies in the supply chain follow their stringent code of practice by not using child or forced labour, ensuring employees can enjoy safe and healthy working conditions that including regular working hours and being paid a living wage.

Many ethical clothing manufacturers also help to support the communities where their raw materials are sourced and garments are made. They help fund education and community building projects, which reduces poverty and creates a sustainable income for local people.

Why Buy Ethical Clothing?

We have a responsibility to look after the planet. It is easy to assume that what we do doesn’t make a difference, but it does. Even the smallest things can help protect the environment and look after the interests of future generations. Ethical clothing might be a bit more expensive than cheap garments made by unethical manufacturers, but a few extra dollars is a small price to pay in the bigger scheme of things.