Tuesday 14 April 2015

surrender apparel

I recently came across a new range of sustainable yoga apparel - Surrender. Two of my passions, yoga and sustainability, already feel closely aligned, and it's wonderful when I can wear things to yoga that are environmentally sustainable.

photo c/o Surrender Apparel

One of the first things I noticed about the range were the large swing tags printed with lots of text. . .

 "In order to create clothing with a lighter footprint, this garment is dyed with natural dyes derived from leaves and roots. The natural pigment will fade over time. Please wash on a cool, gentle setting and dry in the shade to get the longest life out of your garment."

I love it - natural dyes, and perhaps more importantly, the label encourages cool washing and drying in the shade. There are varying figures depending on the material and how long you own a garment, but there is wide consensus that the 'use' phase of our clothing makes up the largest environmental impact of its life. For example, washing and drying a pair of Levi's 501s makes up almost 2/3 of the energy consumed throughout the life of the jeans and uses 1,600 litres of water - half of its water usage*.

I always turn my clothes inside out before making a purchase to see the care label, where something was made, and out of what fabrics. It's the first thing I do after spotting something I like. Again I was impressed by the size of the care label (though I may cut it out once I start wearing the clothing) encouraging cold washing, line drying, and the use of eco-friendly detergents.

The fabric of this soft and supple yoga apparel is made of Tencel and Modal, two environmentally sustainable fabrics known for their comfort and environmental credentials, plus 5-10% Spandex for stretch. Below Surrender explain why they made this choice:

photo c/o Surrender Apparel

Surrender Apparel designer Julie Belic has trained in sustainable fashion and international development, and it's no surprise that she hopes to pair with an NGO and have a social enterprise element to her business in the near future.

photo c/o Surrender Apparel

Until then, I'm thankful she created this beautiful, comfortable and sustainable line of yoga wear, and reminds us all to 'wash responsibly'.

"I don't think a design is fully resolved unless you have considered the the impact of both the manufacturing process and the user lifecycle." - Julie Belic

photo c/o Surrender Apparel

Well - better book myself into my next yoga session to try out my new gear in action!

Those of you living around Melbourne, there is currently a Surrender pop-up shop at Sea Yoga in Torquay where you can try on the pieces for yourself!

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*Statistics from Kate Fletcher's Sustainable Fashion and Textiles: Design Journeys Levi's CEO has also recently acknowledged the impact of washing denim and encourages people not to wash their jeans until it's absolutely necessary, primarily from the standpoint of how much water is used per wash. Read more here.

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