Fashion Revolution week #Whomademyclothes
We just took to the skies from Ahmedabad, believe it or not I have a pretty big fear of flying, I don’t let it hold me back, but it's there. The pilot just said hello to us all, and this always puts me more at ease, maybe its old fashioned but I feel safer and more comfortable when I at least know the name of the person flying the plane. It used to be something that always happened on flights, but it's pretty rare now I find. Anyway, we are in the air now and looking out of the window I can see the thick layer of what looks like fog over the city below, but it's actually pollution, every large city in India has this not so lovely blanket of smog. Every time I see it from the skies I feel so small, so powerless, I mean what difference can I, one girl make? Even if I live my life in a way that causes no environmental impact, what difference would it make? And maybe its true, but you know what if we don’t try, then how will we know? So I try, I do what I can….
Lucy & Yak was born out of a thought, a thought that we can try to have a positive impact on the world around us. On the peoples lives that we meet, it not only helps others, but it makes you feel good too. I feel so proud to not only have created more than 30 jobs in this beautiful country, but to know that we pay them what they deserve, enough so that they can take a day off when they feel like it, to spend more time with their family and friends. We know everyone of our tailors, we see them everyday that we spend in India. I share photos with them of the people back in the west wearing the clothing they created, they love to see it.
This week is Fashion Revolution week and it is all about the people who make your clothes, they are the people that deserve the praise and recognition. They work hard and are highly skilled, they create beautiful pieces that allow us to express ourselves in a way that they sometimes can’t. In the west, fashion can give a voice to someone who is otherwise insecure, it allows us to show our personality through what we choose to wear. We owe the people that make our clothing a huge ‘Thank you’
Fashion Revolution Week is a campaign in April, which falls on the anniversary of the Rana Plaza factory collapse, which killed 1138 people and injured many more on 24th April 2013 in Bangladesh. There were five garment factories in Rana Plaza all manufacturing clothing for big global brands. The victims were mostly young women. That is the day Fashion Revolution was born. No one should put their lives at risk in order to create clothing for us. We love Fashion revolution, because their aim is not berate, they want to encourage….
“We try to always be bold, provocative, inquisitive, accessible and inclusive. We tend to avoid negative protesting, victimising and naming and shaming. We do not target specific individual companies because we believe that the industry’s problems are bigger than any one company’s actions. We do not advocate boycotting simply because we don’t see it as an effective way to achieve systemic change”
We should all try our best to ask the question to our favourite brands and companies #whomademyclothes? We should encourage them to try to get to know everyone in their supply chain. Not only does it mean that the makers get treated better, it also means we can be better people and shop without guilt. Because as much as we think we can ignore it, I don't believe we can. It is in the back of your mind, and it is effecting you, probably very subconsciously, but its there. We would all feel happier knowing that our favourite fashion item didn't come at a cost for someone else. Let 's all do our best, none of us are perfect, and it is easier most of the time to choose the un ethical item, dont beat yourself up about that, just try to encourage the brand you like to buy from to do more for their workers. This little nudge is all they need....
Here are some of our amazing makers! We love them all, and know them all personally, and this makes us smile everyday. To know they are actually happy making our dungarees means the world and means our clothing has more to it than just a label. it has a story, and many lives behind it.
Meet Ismail, the lovely guy we met almost one year ago now. He has become a very close friend of ours, he loved with his family in rural Rajasthan in India. He has a wife and a son. When we met Ismail last year he had a small tailoring business with his two friends; raju & DP being the only tailors. He looked after both of them and paid them very fairly already. We didn't have to encourage it, it was never a question for Ismail, he is an amazing guy. He has now grown with Lucy & Yak, and has 20 tailors, 7 checkers and a master cutter working with him. All in less than a year. He always says to us "No one is boss, we are all the boss here". We are so luck to have met this guy..... Can we all stop for a second and thank this wonderful man! Below are some of his longest standing tailors, Raju, Sultan, Rinku and DP.
Lucy & Chris