The sustainability of khadi and the fabrics we use



There are many facets of 'sustainability' when it comes to fashion and the clothes we wear. At Auréole, we're doing our best to cover as many of them as we can, through what we do.


From the minimal environmental impact of the fabrics we source, to the fair trade practices we incorporate in every step of our supply chain and even through our zero-waste packaging, the final garment that we send you is one that reflects your and our own values of social and environmental responsibility.


Here's a little more detail on the sustainability of khadi and the fabrics we use.


THE KHADI METHOD

An age-old art that originated in India, today khadi is seeing a resurgence for its -

 

1. Social and economic potential

For anyone unfamiliar with the concept, khadi is crafted by artisans painstakingly weaving fabrics from handspun yarns, which means it involves time-intensive handwork and skill. This gives it immense potential to create more jobs in small towns and villages, and thereby empower local communities, making khadi truly sustainable from an economic growth perspective.

 

 2. Minimal use of natural resources

When it comes to the environmental impact of khadi, you'd be hard pressed to find something that has a lower carbon footprint. Being handspun and handwoven, its production requires no electricity and it also uses far less water than machine-made fabrics (3 litres as compared to an average of 55 litres). 

 

3. Season-less applications

The fabric's treatment - being handspun and handwoven - renders it able to provide warmth during the winter, while its breathability simultaneously keeps our skin cool during the winter. 

 

THE OTHER QUALITIES OF OUR FABRICS

1. They generate zero toxic pollutants

We're extremely particular about sourcing fabrics that have been dyed naturally and do not generate any toxic pollutants. Natural fabrics are always chosen for their comfort, breathability and environmental impact as well.

 

A note on the fashion industry's pollution

Via dyes

The fashion industry as a whole generates a staggering amount of pollution; the dyeing and treatment of textiles contributes to 20% of the global pollution of industrial water. (1)

 

Via plastics

Today, 60% of materials used for clothing production are plastic. Washing plant-based textiles sheds plastic microfibres, which end up in the ocean and (along with the other bits of plastics and microplastics entering the oceans) endanger marine life, even ending up in our food chains through the seafood we consume. The washing of plastic-based textiles like polyester, nylon or acrylic releases about half a million tonnes of plastic microfibres in the ocean ever year. (2)

 
2. They are often recycled and upcycled

It's a startling truth that every second, 1 truckload of clothing is incinerated or landfilled. Waste is huge in the fast fashion industry - even in the form of unused textiles.

 

At Auréole, we breathe new life into fabrics by sourcing beautiful deadstock textiles for some of our designs when we aren't using khadi. Our own scraps of excess fabric are upcycled into accessories like hair-bands and donated to charity organisations.

 

3. They last

We truly believe in the slow fashion mantra of 'buy less and make it last.'

Given that sustainability and longevity are inseparable concepts, the quality of our fabrics matters considerably. Sourcing those with high-durability, like khadi, helps us make sure that they will age well and remain as loved clothes that last for a long, long time. 

 

 

REFERENCES

1. Kant, R., Textile dyeing industry: An environmental hazard, Natural Science, Vol. 4, 1 (2012), p.23 

2. O’Connor, M.C., Inside the lonely fight against the biggest environmental problem you’ve never heard of, The Guardian (27 October 2014); International Union for Conservation of Nature, Primary microplastics in the oceans: A global evaluation of sources (2017), pp.20–21