Slow fashion is something that is discussed more and more these days and chances are if you're here you've noticed me talk about it too. It is definitely something that is integral to how the cap batches here are made and a big part of how I approach every decision in relation to production.
However it's often hard to tell exactly where a company stands on it, even if they talk about it. But I wanna address that, so anyone who is curious can know a bit more for sure how it factors in and how slow fashion literally is considered re caps.
How does slow fashion factor in with the capalog and cap production?
Practically slow fashion is the polar opposite of fast fashion, so instead of big factories making lots of caps all at once & with a quick turnaround in collections, for slow fashion the focus is on things being made well, sustainably and just with more responsibility towards every single decision.
Fast fashion involves making multiple new collections each year based on forecasting trends that might sell and it also involves a lot of fabric waste too. Slow fashion means that there isn't multiple collections each year and that often the styles and products are available year in and year out. It literally is a slower pace of production, based on a calmer approach. It's also focused more on products made WELL, the craft is more important because you can also get really geeky about how well something is made if you have more time to invest in it.
At the capalog I want to design & make minimal caps that you get a lot of use out of, that become old favourites. They're for peeps who know what they like and prob may or may not still have clothes in their wardrobe that they bought yrs ago. The colours that I pick to use are also ones that I know I personally have liked for a long time & that are always good go to's & wardrobe stables, like the blue-grey, navy, grey and charcoal... and then with some fun ones thrown in for good measure. Cos well I'm a colour addict*, so can literally get obsessed with shades of colour & as a design geek, I ain't gonna make boring ones either.
*Long term I would also like to work on growing my own dyes to dye denim for caps.... but that's a work in progress!
The fabric used for the caps is mainly bought from a company specialising in organic cotton and they talk quite openly about how they work directly with a small company; in Kerala, India; who grow the cotton and hand dye it. To be honest I buy fabric from them because I can trust that I know where the fabric comes from too. I want to know what I'm offering.*
*except the yellow.. it's the ONLY fabric that isn't organic fyi.
But how does buying new fabric mean sustainable? Well sustainable has lots of meanings, what about offering that farmer and his family a sustainable living and trade?? Sustainable doesn't always apply to just the materials or does it mean always re-use, but the opposite doesn't mean buying new is bad too. There's a lot of grey area in the middle and half the work is just not to create new waste to begin with & anything new to be made responsibly.
Personally also as someone who has only worked in unsustainable industries, i.e. theatre and independent retail, there is a LOT of value in creating stable incomes for human beings. I've found the hard way how it can effect your mental health and maintaining a system that supports workers is something that needs to be protected & made sustainable too.
BATCHES RE SLOW FASHION
Production wise all the caps are made to order in small weekly batches. There's not a crazy amount made months in advance just in case of a sale and caps are only made when they are ordered, so there should be no excess waste of products not sold.
Logistically that means as a customer you can order a cap any time during the week, and the cut off is wed lunchtime at 12pm, for delivery that weekend. Then your cap is made especially for you and to your head-size. If it is ordered after the cut off, then it's added to the next batch for delivery the following weekend.
So on wednesdays afternoons right after the cut off, all the cap pieces are cut out of the fabric needed, on thursdays the bulk of the sewing is done and on fridays they are finished off and sent out. That's literally how simple the batch production is and it's pretty manageable too. It's not a crazy effort to make a cap for you that fits perfectly nor is it crazy expensive. Neither do you need to wait ages for it!
Slow fashion to the capalog means the products are designed to be purchases that last and kept, the fabric is sourced responsibly and that caps are sewn and made with care and attention to the craft... but without making you as a customer wait too long to get it!