Clothing brands have recognised the rise of environmental consciousness in parents.
FORGET about stripes and polka dots: today the hottest words in children’s fashion are “natural fibres”, “ecological” and “ethical”. International clothing brands have recognised the rise of environmental consciousness in parents, and these companies are addressing the issues of organic materials and sustainability by providing new options to consumers. Several major clothing brands already have a separate children’s collection.
In Finland you can find the Conscious Collection by H&M, Sustainable Choice by Lindex, and Newbie by Kappahl. The amount of organic materials used differs between the collections. The Newbie collection is all about organic cotton. The Sustainable Choice collection uses mainly organic natural fibres. The Conscious Collection includes what H&M calls “conscious materials” like organic cotton, recycled cotton and recycled polyester.
For first-time mothers like me, who get lost and confused in the jungle of children’s clothing brands, the label of organic is a beacon in the darkness. By choosing organic cotton, I keep my baby comfortable and safe from industrial toxics, right? Not necessarily. In order for textile products to arrive to their destinations in brand-new condition, it is necessary to protect the items from mould, stains and germs. New clothes, even made from organic materials, might contain toxic chemicals due to the logistics.
But parents looking for quality children’s clothes that are safe to wear and sustainably produced need look no further. In the past five years Finland has experienced a boom in mothers-turned-entrepreneurs who have started their own children’s collections with organic materials and ethical business in mind. A few to mention: Aarrekid, Beibamboo, Enne Design, Höö Design, Loru, MinuMinu, Muru and Punainen Norsu.
For example, Beibamboo offers clothes specially designed for new-borns, using soft fabrics of bamboo and cotton, putting the labels outside the clothes and minimising the number of seams. As the new-borns grow quickly, Beibamboo also rents their products. I asked the founder of Beibamboo, Nina Ignatius, how they make sure that their materials are free from toxic chemicals.
“Beibamboo uses materials that are certified with the Oeko-Tex 100 Standard, which guarantees that all materials are tested and the clothes are safe to use. The production is in Finland, so there is no need to protect the items with chemicals during the short haul,” Ignatius explains.
Support local entrepreneurs and, in return, receive comfortable and fun-looking clothes for your children to wear. Sounds like a bargain, don’t you think?
The writer is a mother and a writer from RAWR Magazine www.rawr.fi