It is our vision to become one of the most inspiring and conscious fashion brands in the world. (This is an ambitious statement we know!) But we know our WHY, and our why is to positively impact our planet and it’s people in every single thing we do, playing our part in preserving our beautiful earth for our children, and our children’s children.
Rather than strive for sustainability to be our point of difference, we hope to drive change within the textile industry so that a new ‘normal’ is achieved universally.
A note from our founders
A customer once asked me ‘excuse me, I love your brand, but can you tell me, who makes my clothes?’ It was April 2016 and the Fashion Revolution movement was well underway and at the time, I considered this a reasonably straightforward question to answer. I told her happily about the wonderful relationships we’d developed with our suppliers and how we only partner with suppliers who share our values around ethical conduct. I explained that ultimately, anyone we choose to work with, we are proud to call them part of our global Spell family.’
But in that moment, I realised something – true transparency meant so much more than just ‘giving her my word’. It called for 3rd party certification – of the ethical and the environmental kind. It needed to run much deeper, through every facet of how we did business. So that very month, we started mapping out our supply chain. And that’s how our sustainability journey began.
Sustainability is an important part of who we are and a crucial part of the future journey we are on. And when we talk sustainability, we’re not talking from a marketing point of view, or a branding point of view or a sleep-slightly-better-at-night point of view. We mean from a ground-up, live and breath it, runs through the core of our very values, point of view. Some say the fashion industry, by its very (consumerist) nature, may never coexist with sustainability, but we hope to challenge that belief by creating consciously and minimising harm to our planet in how we choose to do business.
From our factories to our manufacturing methods to our everyday footprint here in Byron Bay, our vision is to continue to create beautiful garments that also inspire change towards truly sustainable fashion. Change for people, change for communities and change for the planet along the way. It’s an exciting, expansive and forever evolving journey – and one that we want to share with you.Elizabeth & Isabella
If we continue on this path the impact on the environment
and communities will be disastrous
Farming raw materials, fibre creation and garment making processes all use resources, water, chemicals and energy, all of which impact the environment and our global society.
Change is coming... We are committed to being part of that change...
We are proud of the way we run our business, and proud also of how much we have achieved on this journey toward sustainability, but to truly have a positive impact on our planet we need to aim ever higher still. Our 2025 sustainability commitment is aimed at understanding our impact and developing initiatives to create further positive change. We realise this journey is never ending but are determined to meet the targets set below.
Complete Supply Chain TransparencyThe first step towards sustainable production is full transparency and accountability throughout our global supply chain. We have always required our entire global family to adhere to our code of conduct which addresses standards relating to social/ ethical, environmental and animal welfare, but in addition to this we are proud to say that our garment factories have been ethically audited to international standards by independent certification bodies (SEDEX, WRAP, BSCI as listed on our global supply chain map).
However, this is only tier one of our supply chain and that is just the beginning, we need to know that our suppliers’ suppliers are as committed to sustainability as we are. Ultimately, we want to know the cotton farms, fabric mills and fabric printers are also ethically accredited. Achieving this is an ambitious task.
It requires effective stakeholder engagement and strong supplier relationships based on trust and a shared vision. This will take time and commitment. We will be continually updating our Global Family Page as we have new members on board. It will be an ongoing journey that everyone can follow on the road to transparency.
Social AdvocacyWe believe in global citizenship and as such we have a global family. We believe that people can live better lives if they have access to the global market place and we are proud to support Social Advocacy/ Artisan initiatives.
Our pledge is to have at least one social advocacy initiative per collection. Not only are we supporting marginalised people but we are honouring the tradition of hand making, which is at the heart of who we are.
Sustainable FibresWe are committed to ensuring that our garments are made from the most sustainable fibers we can source. Our design and production team are continually working with material specialists to understand the sustainability implications and opportunities for each fiber.
Organic Cotton as well as sustainably produced, plant-based cellulose fibers like Rayon/Viscose and Recycled Nylon are all being plugged into our supply chain. We’re already using ecologically friendly, biodegradable Lenzing Modal® and Tencel® and are exploring other closed loop fibres.
We have also joined brands like Patagonia, Stella McCartney and Mara Hoffman in signing Canopy's Fashion Loved by Forests Campaign.
Dyes and PrintingColour and Prints are integral to us. We pledge that our print and dye houses will use the most environmentally and ethically responsible products. Ensuring our dye houses have certification or independent verification focusing on responsible water, chemical and energy footprints is our current focus.
FootprintWe are committed to knowing and minimizing the environmental footprints of our garments. Water, waste and energy are on the radar and we plan to benchmark ourselves with the leaders in the textile industry.
We will make this the environmental cost known to consumers (imagine knowing the environmental footprint of every Spell item you shop so you can make informed decisions to be the driver of change). Additionally, we are already using experts to help initiate resource reducing initiatives throughout our whole supply chain.
Our aim is to have all footprints by 2025 available to consumers. Additionally, we are on track to have all owned facilities 100% carbon neutral.
Circular FashionOur customers have always embraced the reuse and recycling of garments and we are committed to helping our customers extend the life-cycle of their Spell garments, (#vintagespell!!).
But we’d like to take this further and believe all inputs and outputs related to the production of our garments have the opportunity to be reused, recycled and regenerated.
This concept is known as circular fashion and our plan is to collaborate with other leaders in the sector to explore how this can be achieved. We have signed the Copenhagen Circular Fashion 2017 Commitment.
Canopy works with fashion brands to ensure their cellulose based fibers (viscose, rayon, tencel, modal) are not contributing to the deforestation of ancient or endangered forests. This is a key area of our broader sustainability vision however is an extremely complex issue with serious challenges throughout the supply chain. As such we have become a signatory to the Canopy policy in order to utilize Canopy’s unique expertise and drive change across the fashion sector. Read the full Canopy Agreement here.
Global Fashion Agenda