All over the world, clothing brands and boutiques are waking up to the idea that sustainability is an essential component of any successful business today. More and more, major brands are slashing the use of fur and exotic skins from their plans, opting instead to craft innovative designs using sustainable and recycled materials.
These days, fashion brands are expected to promote sustainability and transparency by being environmentally responsible and using ethical labour practices instead of feeding into the corruption and exploitation that’s become so prevalent in the fast-fashion world.
There are hundreds of Canadian ethical clothing brands, both online and in-person, that are forging a new path forward for sustainable, kind and “slow” fashion. Help support the brands that are making the fashion world a better place without sacrificing style and check out these 5 Canadian ethical clothing boutiques:
Since 2003, Distill has been prioritizing well-crafted designs, sustainable fashion and ethical production processes. The owner, Alli Skinner, has had a lifelong passion for design and crafting, and as a result has developed a keen eye for beautiful and one-of-a-kind items in the form of fashion, jewelry, home goods and more. The Toronto location of Distill closed in 2019, but you can still visit the shop in Stratford, Ontario, or purchase goods online at distillgallery.com.
2. Any Direct Flight.
With a selection of designs by the owner Margot Allin and other ethical Canadian designers, Any Direct Flight offers clothing that can be tailored to anyone’s individual style preferences. The shop prioritizes high-quality, natural fabrics including bamboo knit, modal and linen. As for the shop’s name? The idea came to the owner while stranded in Miami with her husband. Having requested tickets for “any direct flight” south, they ended up having a beautiful time in Ecuador, which served as a gentle reminder to remain open and adaptable to a change in plans. Learn more at anydirectflightfashion.com.
Placing a special emphasis on durable, sustainable fabrics and shapes that help women feel confident in their skin, Miik is a Toronto-based women’s fashion brand that truly cares about its community. Their “look good, feel good, do good” ethos upholds them to the highest standard of sustainability and ethical processes, which is why they custom-mill all their fabrics from sustainably sourced fibres and manufacture everything locally to ensure all workers are respected and compensated fairly. Shop at miik.ca.
Fed up with fast fashion? Enter Franc: Canada’s one-stop shop for ethical and sustainable basics. Founded by designer Brandy Mercredi, Franc is on a mission to revolutionize the fashion world and create a more conscious society without skimping on style. The brand is meticulous about creating garments that fit perfectly, which is why they’ve developed their own unique sizing chart and only use natural fibre fabrics. Learn more at wearfranc.com.
5. atelier b.
Founded in Montreal by a pair of inseparable best friends, atelier b epitomizes the values of community, family and slow design. Each piece is consciously designed and hand-made using natural fibre fabrics with a minimalist aesthetic in mind. The founders are committed to helping people make informed choices about their clothing, while respecting the traditions of the textiles they use in the creation of their products. In addition to their product offerings, the founders also offer courses so people can learn how to make their own clothing and accessories. Shop at atelier-b.ca.