Before making a product, I do not ask myself. “Could I make this?” Instead, I ask, “Should I make this?” While designing I often think of a line from a Kimya Dawson song, “Is the price of every living thing what your product is worth?” Sure, that may sound a little extreme, but in the grand scope of things it is not. There are all different types of approaches when it comes to sustainability. My biggest worry and focus in creating a clothing line is how much waste will ultimately end up in landfills because of this? There are greater things in this world then running my own creative business, like the World itself. So what am I doing about it?
Organic + Recycled
There are many alternative fibers and fabrics these days. How do I decide on the right one? For now I am sticking with organic and recycled. Here’s why: If I use natural fibers, then they should at least break down if/when they eventually find themselves in a landfill. I use Organic natural fibers so that less chemicals are infecting our ground, water, and animals. Additionally I use recycled fabrics. These fabrics may be either a natural or synthetic fiber or a combination of the 2. This not only gives the fabric a longer life before its final resting place, but in the end it reduced the amount of trash on this earth by 1/2 of what it would be if I were to by new fabric that would be eventually trashed in addition to the recycled piece that was trashed earlier (did that make sense?). If I need synthetic fabric for items I search for a recycled polyester or nylon
My items are all handmade right here in America. This gives me more control over inventory. I do not have to mass produce items and then worry about the ones that don’t sell and end up, you guessed it, in the landfills. What about all those small pieces of scraps cut away from the pattern pieces? Again, since Indi Scout items are handmade I can get great yield out of fabric and end up with few scraps. The scraps that I do receive either get recycled into appliqué or other decorative items, OR I use them as stuffing in fun floor cushions for myself or friends.
Items are mailed in either eco-enclose biodegradable/recyclable mailers or recycled boxes. Cards and hang tags are printed on recycled paper in non toxic inks and attached with scrap fabric or organic naturally dyed yarn scraps. Retail items are packaged in biodegradable paper splattered with homemade natural dyes and organic yarn. When available, each order comes with an Indi Scout flag fixed to the yarn. These are made from scraps that would otherwise be thrown out.