Sustainability Update May 2020

To introduce myself, I’m Christabel and I have just taken on the role of fashion production here at OutsideIn (you might have seen me before at the events as I started as events manager, but a slight shift due to the lockdown situation!). My passion for OutsideIn is to reduce and remove harm at every stage of our supply chain, giving back more than we take out. Last year, I completed a Master’s in Fashion, Textiles and Brand Management, specialising in sustainability and the future of the industry, so I’m super proud to be getting involved and making positive change. So as promised, we are back to share more information about how we are making moves toward a more sustainable future at OutsideIn.

I thought this would be a good time to share what we have been up to over the past 4 months in the fashion department. The answer is lots and lots of preparation. Manufacturing is the main goal this year, last year we took our first step towards that, manufacturing our purple, sunset and charcoal Hope Sweet Hope washed sweaters in Portugal. This was a great start, but for me just the beginning, manufacturing allows us to have more control over what materials we use, the ethics behind the production and choosing who we invest in. So for this year, we want to take it to new heights.

It began in February with a “team meeting” (something that is very popular here at OutsideIn), from there, there were countless hours of scrolling through Instagram, a full week of market research, a trip to the SVP Fashion trade show in London to find sustainable suppliers, and what seems like weeks on sampling, buying and technical learning!

Fast forward to this month, and we are ordering samples from our fresh new tech packs from ethical, sustainable manufacturers who we are proud to invest in. We will be moving toward more sustainable fabrics such as organic cotton and using our past sales data to plan ahead to ensure minimum shipping emissions and reduce overstock for each drop, meaning we sell what we make and we minimise waste.

This has been a learning process for all of us here, but has been worthwhile as we now start to see results. Stay tuned as we take you through the rest of this journey and I will update you next month on how these goals develop, including final choices, final products, and our plans for the future.

Next month - Tracked hours on development, material breakdown across the range and how we plan to change and develop this through manufacturing.

Special thanks to the fashion and textiles team, Rebecca, Lauren and Sam. Without whom, none of this would have been possible!

Christabel x

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