British factory workers being paid £3 an hour making clothes for high street giants. This was the headline that made the news last January in The Telegraph. And it’s evidence of something I’ve known for a while, from my time as a fashion buyer for a high street giant, that just because something is made in the UK, does not mean that someone has been paid a fair wage.
Ethical UK Manufacturing
Now Mini Stitches are a kidswear brand who are revolutionising UK manufacturing. They are producing cutting edge childrenswear, perfect for design savvy parents but in an entirely ethical way. Think clean lines, oversized shapes with beautiful exaggerated details, an oversized bow, pocket or ruffle collar.
Stitches In Time
All their clothes are designed and made in East London by the charity Stitches in Time. It’s a charity who provide free training programmes for local unemployed women who are disadvantaged. Stitches in Time is based in Tower Hamlets, which is one of the poorest boroughs in London. The women receive industry standard training in garment manufacturing, alongside English classes and other essential support, such IT and mentoring opportunities. All profits made from the sale of these clothes go back into the training programme.
The Striped Molly Dress
Daisy is wearing the Striped Molly Dress. We’ve decided it’ll be her New Year’s Eve party dress, though there is no way she’ll be staying up until midnight. I love the 1920’s vibe with its dropped waist and oversized shape. Because it’s a cotton/linen mix the fabric has a real structure to it, so the gathered skirt looks amazing. Her bow is from Glammrags, as I’ve mentioned I’ve struggled to find any hair clips or hair accessories for Daisy that are specifically ethically made, so currently we’re opting for high quality & beautiful over tack. Glammrags have a beautiful range.
The True Cost of A Garment
Because it has been ethically made it is more expensive than your average high street child’s party dress at £55. But we need to rethink what we consider expensive. If we’ve paid £14.99 for a pretty dress we can guarantee that someone somewhere hasn’t been paid a fair wage to make it. The problem is that we are so used to fast fashion and cheap prices that we have lost sight of the real cost of a garment.
To find out more about Mini Stitches and to see the rest of their beautiful range please click here.
For more information about the some of the issues that exist in garment manufacturing supply chains please click here.
Shop Mini Stitches
Stripe Molly Dress | Mini Stitches
Pinwheel Bow | Glammrags
Mini Stitches kindly gifted Daisy this beautiful dress and Glammrags the bow, but all opinions are my own.