“There is no beauty in the finest cloth if it makes
hunger and unhappiness.”
– Kasturba Ghandi
Google the phrase 'ethical clothing' and it's clear that the way we shop – and consume – is undergoing a serious shift. 30+ million search results is pretty hard to argue with.
Though fast fashion may still reign supreme thanks to its affordability and trend-driven appeal, there's an unmistakeable scent of change in the air.
And while it would be easy to quote stat on stat on horrifying report about the failure of fashion to address its many transgressions (like human rights abuses and environmental recklessness among others), we're big believers that positive change begins by making simple choices.
For us, that simple choice was to create a business that not only doesn't create hunger and unhappiness through its operation but actively works towards making the industry we love better. Something that fully acknowledges the true cost of the luxury of creative expression and the pursuit of sartorial satisfaction.
Don't be mistaken though; beautiful clothes and the way they make you feel are still our modus operandi. We just don't think style and aesthetic have to come at such a high expense.
When we dreamt up THE M|N|ML, we wanted to give consumers the power to choose the ethical way without having to break the bank, compromise style and quality, or wreck the planet and the people who are integral to the supply chain.
To make simple choices and small changes. It's easier said than done, and because the path is long, winding and filled with temptation, we created our own manifesto to help guide us.
Wear what feels good.
Our mantra 'fashion that feels good and does good' is two fold: feels good for your soul and your body. Dressing shouldn't be a chore, and it definitely shouldn't be something that makes you question your ethics or how you feel about yourself at 8am in the morning. Soft, well-made with the quality that only a designers touch can give, THE M|N|ML's organic cotton range is for feelin' good always.
Keep it affordable.
More than your coffee, less than your mortgage. What you pay should be a true reflection of the process, skill and craftsmanship involved in turning that cotton to the shirt dress on your back. If you are paying just $5, there's a very high chance that one of the many hands that contributes to the process, is being short changed. Or worse. But, ethical clothing, while not bargain basement cheap, can still be affordable. And we want everyone to have the freedom of choice to buy better.
Make things that do good.
Basics4Basics. We think it's a pretty sweet trade: you buy something you'll get joy from, we give something that will give joy, empowerment, education or even just a bare necessity. Because equality is not just for those that have the luck of being born in a certain place.
Quality over quantity.
One of THE M|N|ML's ultimate muse mamas, Dame Vivienne Westwood, said it best: "Buy less, choose wisely and make it last." Even we'll admit it's easier said than done. Surrounded by lust-have lists, and want it/need it now culture, saying no to the constant bombardment that is modern society feels like an impossible dream. Which is where we come in. THE M|N|ML's high quality styles will always be wardrobe staples – minimal effort, maximum style. Mix and match, make it your own.
Create positive impact and inspire change.
"By all means blaze a path, but build a bridge behind you to bring others with you." These words, from John Elliot of TOMS AU/NZ, are a powerful statement about how to affect lasting change in the industry. No one ever changed their mind by being shouted at after all. Guilt will never be part of our game; instead, we're here to create awareness and opportunity for everyone to find a better way.
Clothing for everyone.
Who's THE M|N|ML woman? She's you, that's who. Our aim is to create comfortable and totally wearable basics without sacrificing style, for everyone. And although we say 'no way, Jose' to being defined by something as one dimensional as a number, our sizing ranges from XS to XL or sizes 6 to 16. We're for women of all ages, shapes and sizes; dressing up and feeling beautiful transcends stereotypes or position in life.
Be open. Be unruly. Be sparkly. Be a fighter, a lover, a peacemaker. Be yourself.
Just be. No compromise.
xx THE M|N|ML