Being an ethical fashion brand means, for us, understanding that what we do affects others. By only using certified organic fabrics and choosing our suppliers carefully, we are helping other companies who share our commitment to work ethically and making a positive contribution to the world.
Our founder, Laurence Chester, is a specialist in the field of combatting human exploitation and has assisted local authorities and the UK government in developing anti human trafficking strategies. He created 16SEVEN as a result of his love of fashion and his concern about the impact our industry has on some of the poorest communities in the world through the rapid expansion of ‘fast fashion’.
He is surrounded by talented fashion ‘artists’ such as Clare Farrell and Sarah Campbell who have collaborated to create our first collection.
We love fashion but hate the human cost. If you are interested to learn more, here is a link to a very emotive trailer for renowned film The True Cost
How do we know our fabrics are eco ethical?
All our fabrics are certified as being at least Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) and where possible are Fairtrade. This is an exacting standard assuring the supply chain is free form human exploitation and fabrics are genuinely organic. There are limitations, which we, as a small company cannot yet address. Some of the most ethical farmers we have come across and really like, cannot afford the accreditation process (similar for Fairtrade certifications) and need big orders to make a livelihood. As we grow, these are the farmers we want to help the most.
Where do our fabrics come from?
Our fabrics mainly originate from India and some from Turkey. We source either directly from a well respected Fairtrade/GOTS certified Mill or via our very good friends and experts in ethical fabric sourcing Lebenskeidung. We chose these sources not only for the scrutiny they pay to their sources but also for their involvement in community based social programs that are making a real difference to the lives of poor communities. If you are setting up your own brand, please steal our supply chain and support ethical business!
Who actually makes the garments?
Once the rolls of fabric arrive in UK they come to our own small factory in Wood Green, London where highly skilled people, who are paid Living Wage, hand-make our garments.
We have spent considerable time in making sure our fabrics are the best available on the market for the design demands. They are really beautiful and, by working with our suppliers, we have achieved our aim of creating ethical fashion without sacrificing quality or our values.
Please see Laurence’s Linkedin article for more information about fast fashion and ethics.