Fashion is more connected to our lifestyles than what we perceive it to be. It is much beyond a form of styling. Fashion like any other industry is characterized by change but is also deeply connected with one’s mood, personality and taste.
My investment in fashion is deep-rooted and emotional. Since a young age, I have enjoyed the process of detailing my outfits, navigating colour schemes and ensuring comfortable clothing. Owing to globalization, we are now entitled to plenty of choices in the realm of fashion which has created an attitude of “Nothing is enough” and we see ourselves always wanting to shop for items which are not genuinely required by us. Concepts like retail therapy and reckless buying have also emerged in the recent times.
A culmination of these events has led to fashion causing a huge impact on the environment with fast fashion leading this trend. Other effects include labour abuse and human rights violations. With Covid-19 already altering our lifestyles, it has enabled the revelation of a new realization – Rethinking our fashion needs. The salary cuts, lack of outings and unused piled up clothing stock in our closets would encourage slow and long lasting fashion. We are also seeing a gradual rise in conscious and sustainable clothing with an influx of various startups and brands operating in this arena.
Here are some immensely creative and eco-conscious home-grown brands which are designed to promote the idea of comfortable clothing:
The Pot Plant
Started by a New Delhi based designer duo, Pot Plant is a unisex clothing brand that creates comfortable garments in breathable fabrics for everyday use with a sustainable approach. It offers easy separates, handcrafted bandhani silk sarees, contemporary tops, flowy dresses, and unisex shirts, jackets, and pants, all pieces that transcend places, seasons, and wardrobes. By celebrating natural fabrics, it encourages its customers to not be constrained by gender-based boundaries and enables them to express freely.
“From clothes that last a lifetime, to fashion that recognises no gender, we wish to touch the zenith in all-inclusive fashion,” – Founder, Pot Plant
Runaway Bicycle is a design studio based in Mumbai catering to sustainable clothing and home decor. This brand creates its own handlooms, uses natural dyes and certified organic cotton to ensure ethical clothing. As a design philosophy, Runaway Bicycle believes the most comfortable clothes are worn by children and people employed in physical labour. This awareness bears out in a stubborn penchant for the lightness of the fabrics employed and a design aesthetic that values comfort over form.
Designer Nimish Shah started Shift in 2011 to encourage environmental consciousness in the fashion industry with fair-trade practices, natural fibers and a business model that benefits people and planet collectively. Nimish is also the creative director for Bhaane (Anand Ahuja’s contemporary clothing label) and has always believed in bringing a conscious consumer change through eco fashion.
It was founded in 2015 by Medha Khosla who wanted to create a contemporary subtle clothing brand for everyday use. The brand promotes ethical production, natural textiles and classic silhouettes for functional long-lasting use. It aims to design clothes which suit both work and leisure needs and prefers understated elegance to superfluous ornamentation. It brings thoughtfully created wardrobe staples, offering an aesthetic that sets one apart.
It is a Bengaluru-based ethical fashion brand that aims to reduce carbon footprint and create garments for all body types. They promote various sustainable programs and upcycling and spread awareness for conscious fashion.
It is a 100% organic and hand-stitched clothing label that uses thoughtfully chosen fabrics and cut down on garment waste. They comprise of an all-women artisans’ team and create breathable, comfortable and timeless clothing. As a brand, their focus in every new collection is to use Indian fabrics and Indian crafts in every product. They work very closely with Hand block printers and Hand-dyers from Jaipur and Hand-weavers of Ikat fabric from Andhra Pradesh. Being a team of dog lovers, 25% of their profit goes into rescuing, rehabilitating and feeding dogs.