On April 22, we can show appreciation for nature, the environment and our world through fashion
With the coronavirus pandemic dominating every aspect of life and conversation, no one can be blamed for desiring a little distraction in the form of retail therapy. And with April 22 (that’s this Wednesday, for those among us who have thrown out their 2020 diaries) marking 50 years of World Earth Day, it’s the ideal time to show appreciation for nature, the environment and our world through fashion.
Swedish Sustainable Brand Vildare launched in the UK in January, in a bid to actively reduce environmental impact on the planet. Boasting a range of premium and ethically made bags made from natural and sustainable materials, its bold print designs are heavily influenced by the natural world and showcasing endangered animals. Plus, a portion of the sale of each bag going directly to the charities that help the animals featured.
Our daily lives may have changed for now, but fast fashion is still a constant and relevant issue. The unisex range – which includes convertible Tote bag backpacks and cross-body bags – are made ethically in the EU in small batches and use sustainable materials, including sustainable cork instead of leather and 100 per cent organic hemp webbing.
Tags are made out of plantable seed paper and all packaging is reusable – you just pop it back in the post after receiving your new purchase. Co-founder Adam Smith tells Marie Claire Vildare’s ethos is a no compromise between bold design and sustainability, and all products are vegan friendly and animal cruelty free.
He expands, ‘Having previously purchased expensive bags only to find out they wore out quickly and didn’t last, we started to do research in to the industry and were shocked and upset by how the majority of products contained so many unsustainable materials and processes.
‘We decided we wanted to create a business making premium design led products inspired by nature, minimise the environmental impact, and give back via charities that help protect the natural world, specifically the endangered animals featured in our prints.’
Co-founder Heather Kay adds, ‘‘Vildare’ means ‘wilder’ in Swedish, and that’s exactly our mission – to encourage living that is consciously aware, and connected to, the wild world around us.
‘Sumatra, an island within Indonesia, is an area so rich in wildlife – think tigers, elephants, rhinos and orangutans. But due to rapid deforestation over the last 10 years, the rain forests have been reduced by over 50 per cent, leaving many animal populations in Sumatra critically endangered. Our aim is to draw awareness via our illustrations, and even better, to give back to organisations who help fight the cause.’