Ethical Fashion Blog

Although their characteristics vary between geographic regions, slums are usually areas of cities inhabited by the very poor or socially disadvantaged.  Slum buildings vary from simple shacks to permanent and well-maintained structures. Most slums lack clean water, electricity, sanitation and other basic services.  (Source)
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Grandma Tattoo Art
Our inventory manager, Bree, sporting the At First Glance top – she looked so cute I had to snap a pic. Pretty fierce tattoo there, huh?  It’s an image of her grandma, Mamee, who Bree says is the biggest influence in her life.  So in honor of all the ladies in our life who inspire and nurture us, Happy Mother’s Day!  Don’t forget to tell your moms, grandmas, and aunts that you love them.:)
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I celebrated Earth Day by having a mini picnic and wearing Mata’s ‘Blue Belle Dress‘.

By choosing to wear Mata’s clothing you are making a difference.  Usually fashion is seen as having a negative effect on our planet (lots of dyes and chemicals are used to produce garments).  Luckily for us, most of Mata Traders’ pieces are hand block printed with eco-friendly vegetable dyes.  Mata also uses fair trade cotton, which means they support small family farms and follow environmental standards that restrict the use of agrochemicals and encourage sustainability.

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Ikat is a print known and loved around the world.   Mata uses ikat prints in many of their pieces, and, as we all know, Mata’s pieces are handmade by Indian women artisans.  I thought I’d delve into this world of ikat and really see what is behind the scenes.  I was in for a surprise.  Hopes of a DIY ikat project were shattered when I found out how intricate this process is.  I didn’t even know how to pronounce ikat correctly until I heard Maureen say it; it is pronounced ‘ee-kaht.’  It is a style of weaving where the yarn is dyed in zigzag or geometric patterns.  The weaver chooses the exact pattern by wrapping the yarns with wax and clay before dipping it in different dyes.  It is like a puzzle that gets more complicated with each color that is in the ikat design.  Since the threads are dyed before they are woven it gives an “inaccurate” color distribution resulting in the enchanting blurred edges of the finished product.
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Do we get the most photogenic interns or what?  That’s Mallika and Laura in New Buffalo, Michigan and our own talented Taylor behind the lens.
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