textiles

ZADY's Essentials Collection provides total supply chain transparency

zady essentials collection information
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ZADY makes and sells cool ethical clothing, but they're so much more than that. They offer accessible, exhaustive resources on supply chain transparency through their The New Standard initiative, because they believe that the key to change is education. They believe that consumers are smart enough to want real, comprehensive answers from companies about where their clothes come from, from farm to closet. Knowing a little bit about one part of the supply chain isn't enough. The great thing is that, even if you're not likely to do research before making a purchase, ZADY makes learning about the people, animals, and resources behind the products you buy easy - they'll even send email updates each week if you subscribe.

With this in mind, ZADY started their own collection of timeless basics called The Essentials Collection. From the press release: "The designs for the products featured in The Essentials Collection are centered on these principles: design for longevity; utilize the highest quality fibers that also have a low footprint; work directly, as partners, with the supply chain to ensure a low impact from farm to final factory; and support American factories and excellence in production with domestic cut and sew."

zady essentials collection sweater

Read the product description for any item in the collection and you'll learn everything you could possibly want to know about materials and textiles sourcing, worker welfare, and environmental impact. An example from the .06 Lightweight Alpaca Sweater listing:

The .06 is made from the wool of Alpacas raised in their natural habitat in the Andes mountains of Peru, where they can roam, hop, and grow their silky fleece in beautiful natural colors, like this heather grey. Soft as cashmere without pilling, as warm as sheep’s wool without the bulk, hypo-allergenic, and one of the strongest fibers, Alpaca is an ideal ingredient for the sweater that will endure in your closet and become a favorite piece. This super fiber is then sorted, washed, combed and spun in nearby Arequipa, Peru, where 80% of the facilities energy needs is provided by solar panels. We receive the best fibers, called baby alpaca (though its not from baby alpaca), which are then sent to New York, where the slightly relaxed fit and menswear inspired chest pocket are crafted, converging timeless style with the ancient wool.
Considering how much research and work has been put into each piece, The Essentials Collection is reasonably priced, with items ranging from $36.00 to $185.00. This stuff is built to last, so the cost per wear is sure to be a good value. I've been eyeing their best selling .02 tee for months and they recently restocked it!

Though there are many companies committed to transparency, ZADY is the leader in examining what "transparent" means from every angle. If more companies functioned in this way, we'd be well on our way to an ethical, sustainable marketplace.

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Shop ZADY's Essentials Collection

Read about the manufacturing industry on The New Standard.


zady, the new standard

giveaway: $25 Amani ya Juu Gift Card


Did you see Friday's post about fair trade organization, Amani ya Juu? If not, make sure to read my review of their beautiful Olive Branch spoon set and then head back here to read more about the company and enter a giveaway.

(Coincidentally, Friday's post fell on Daniel's and my fifth wedding anniversary. We didn't realize it then, but it's traditional to give your beloved something made of wood on your fifth anniversary, so it was rather fitting that I chose to review the most beautiful wooden spoons on that day.)

And now for the last two interview questions and responses:

Do employees "graduate" from Amani or do you find that many of them stay on long term?


Amani is committed to holistic development. Women gain experience in stitching, quality control, purchasing, bookkeeping, management and design. As new women enter the program they are mentored in quality workmanship with strong emphasis on ethical business practices and harmonious relationships with people of different backgrounds. 
Due to the circumstances affecting marginalized women, the ladies who come through our doors are in a very transient stage of life. They often move to to another city or return to their home country. Those who stay often move up in the ranks, training others, begin to oversee a certain department, or earn an administrative position. Some receive loans from us and start their own small businesses. Others apply for our scholarship program and further their education.

Besides making a purchase, what are the best ways for us to support Amani ya Juu?


Spread the word. Following us and sharing about us on social media is huge.  Introducing us to new people means more opportunities for consistent, sustainable livelihood for the ladies in Africa. Signing up for our e-newsletter blasts is also a great way to stay connected if you think you might want to purchase from us in the future (Christmas is only 165 days away!).  
Volunteer.  Host an Amani Box Party in your home, church, school or other community event.  Box Parties play a vital role in sustaining the women of Amani and in spreading God’s peace in your community.  Contact: volunteer@amaniafrica.org. 
Pray.  [If you're the praying sort,] join with us in praying that God’s peace will reign in Amani communities everywhere. 
Donate.  Support Amani’s work in extending God’s peace beyond her walls.  Donate online.
Amani is offering a $25 gift card to one lucky reader. Just enter via the form below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
The contest will run until 11:59 pm this Sunday, July 20, 2015. 
Open to US readers only.