St Charlie is like no other sustainable or ethical online store. It's what we don't sell that makes us different.
We take a unique approach to the pieces we source and have no time for 'green-washing' or 'ethical' claims that contradict the materials or production methods used.
We have a strict no-go list when it comes to certain types of fabrics, including some that are commonly mislabelled as "sustainable"or "ethical" and we cannot consider a piece ethical if there is no respect for human and animal rights.
To ensure we're providing our customers with the most ethical and sustainable clothing, we use a unique approach when it comes to product assessment and selection. When curating our product lines we use an ethical criteria to determine what will and will not be stocked. We call this our Product Approval Policy and it's how we ensure only the best pieces make it to our store and to you.
The Product Approval Policy comprises of:
The fashion designers represented here at St Charlie are friends of our planet, implementing eco-friendly measures to minimise the footprint they leave behind on the environment. Additionally, pieces are high quality and timeless, transcending seasons so each garment can be enjoyed and loved for a long time.
There are strict guidelines to the fabrics we stock also, which include organic fibres such as certified organic cotton, natural fibres such as hemp and linen, recycled fibres or up-cycled pieces, which are about eliminating the need for new resources by using resources that already exist.
Here are some of the things our designers implement to create sustainable, eco-friendly pieces:
- Using natural fibres such as organic cotton, hemp and linen, that are responsibly and sustainably harvested
- Using recycled or up-cycled materials, particularly those from post-consumer waste or industrial 'scraps'
- Using handwoven fabric which has a minimal carbon footprint and ensures traditional fabric making remains relevant in local communities
- Obtaining independent, third party organic or eco-certifications such as GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard)
- Treating fibres with natural, botanical or AZO-free dyes
- Avoiding or minimising the use of toxic chemicals, formaldehyde and harmful dyes
- Manufacturing locally to reduce the impact of transporting materials throughout the supply chain
- Making one off collections, taking made-to-order wholesale orders and adopting a small batch production method, to help reduce waste and ending up with excess stock
- Utilising energy efficient, low or zero waste manufacturing wherever possible
- Designing with longevity, high quality and timelessness in mind, increasing the product's life cycle and #30wears
It's so important that we support the farmers and workers who make our garments by ensuring they are paid fairly. While this undoubtedly benefits the workers, it also sets a higher (and more realistic) price for clothing and helps challenge the fast fashion notion that garments are easily disposable.
Here are some of the ways our designers make a commitment to fair manufacturing standards:
- Staff are paid living wages, on time
- No child or forced labour
- Safe, clean working conditions
- Flexible working hours, especially important for those with family commitments
- Financial support for any training or education undertaken and interest-free loans
- Paid study and holiday leave
- Pension funds
- Overtime pay for voluntary overtime work
- Literary classes during working hours
- Children welcome afterschool, during school holidays or when ill
- Non discriminatory working conditions and right of expression
- Skills training to encourage ongoing learning
- Using low impact, AZO and formaldehyde free dyes in the workplace
We also can't ignore the link between health of our planet and the contribution animal agriculture is having on the environment. Climate change, deforestation, fisheries depletion, food safety, world hunger, the list goes on... Raising animals for food requires large amounts of land, water, food and energy and causes incredible animal suffering. For this reason all pieces sold at St Charlie are strictly animal free. This means no leather, silk, wool, suede, fur, mohair, angora, bone, cashmere, down, lanolin, lambswool and more.
We are vegan a owned and operated business.
To reach our shelves, a lot of thought and research goes into selecting each garment and considering the 3 key impacts above. If something doesn't meet your ethical standards we'd love to know why.
Love + kindness,
Team St Charlie