Meet the business savvy and ethical women and their projects on Kickstarter
The reality in the business world is that it is a world dominated by men. Women have fought long and hard to claim leadership positions in this domain. Some have succeeded, others have failed. Yet many more still soldier on, waiting for their chance in the sun.
Here at Fashionably Kind, I would like to pay tribute to four women running ethical fashion startups, either by themselves or with a co-founder. They just happen to have projects live on Kickstarter at the moment, and I hope you will join me in supporting their businesses. Here are their ethical fashion projects:
1. Nokshi Crafts
Kickstarter page link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/nokshicrafts/worlds-first-ethically-produced-hand-painted-scarf
About the brand: Founded by Maisha Samiha, a Canadian of Bangladeshi descent, Nokshi Crafts is behind the first ethically produced hand-painted scarf line (read more about Maisha’s story in Style Wise’s recent article). The brand is all about empowering rural artisans in Bangladesh, most of whom are women. In the brand’s own words: “Nokshi Crafts was created with a vision to provide opportunities for artisans, mostly women, who do not have access to markets. We give them a global platform to showcase their talent while ensuring they are paid fair wages and not subject them to unsafe working conditions.”
What I like about the brand: Their transparency about environmental impact and paying fair worker wages are definitely plus points for the brand.
What I’m unsure about: How ethical the brand truly is, considering that they primarily use silk, which will not go down well with vegans and vegetarians.
About the brand: Founded and designed by US-based Rachel Fernbach, PonyBabe is all about comfort and style. From their Kickstarter page: “PonyBabe is an ethical fashion label, dedicated to providing women with comfortable, multi-use styles. We use only eco-friendly textiles and are manufacturing in Brooklyn NY, USA. Our first collection is the 24 Hour Outfit: A wrap, racerback tank top, cardigan, and pants… all meant to be mixed, matched, and worn on repeat.”
What I like about the brand: “PonyBabe is a woman-owned, American made label. A commitment to ethics, sustainability, and transparency is the heart of our brand. This motivates us to share the details of our supply chain,” the brand says on its Kickstarter page. I think it’s great that their clothes are manufactured in the US, which means fewer issues related to worker rights and wages.
What I am unsure about: Nothing comes to mind at the moment, the brand appears to have most, if not all bases, covered.
3. Castellano Ethnic Origins
About the brand: Founded and designed by UK-based entrepreneur Daniela Castellanos, this brand makes hand-made bags and backpacks. As stated on its Kickstarter page, “ethically made with unique patterns our bags preserve Colombian heritage and provide jobs to local women of the Wayuu people in Northern Colombia.”
What I like about the brand: The brand has a mission of giving 250 jobs to indigenous women in Colombia and wants to become a leading example in the fashion industry.
What I am unsure about: There is no mention of the environmental impact of the bags and I’m not sure that vegans and vegetarians will be too happy about the use of leather in making the bags.
4. TAMGA Designs
About the brand: This Canadian brand was founded by Yana Barankin and Eric Dales, who traveled to Indonesia to get inspiration for their collection of men and women’s apparel. Their apparel is made in Indonesia and details of its supply chain is available on their Kickstarter page.
What I like about the brand: Transparency about their supply chain and environmental impact, as well as factories.
What I am unsure about: As with PonyBabe, TAMGA seems to have all its bases covered, for now.
What other ethical fashion Kickstarter projects run by women have you noticed that I haven’t featured? Please post your thoughts in the comments section, or feel free to write me at email@example.com