This past April, the Fashion Revolution Week made ripples across social media platforms, communities and stores, encouraging shoppers to ask themselves and their chosen brands: “Who Made My Clothes?” More and more people every year are making the conscious decision to value the people behind products over the products themselves. As a poster in one shop window read, “Ethical is the New Black.” And this month, a new product to line our shelves is dismantling the belief that ethical has to be a compromise to popular fashion.
Etik & Coproduces sneakers with the beloved Converse look, except that these shoes pack a triple punch: they’re certified Fair Trade, their cotton is organic, and they’re 100% vegan. Etik & Co’s website declares that they have selected production partners “whose values are in line with ours: transparency, social justice, environmental stewardship and support to the community.”
But the final, most impactful blow that this product throws at the fast fashion industry is this: these shoes cost no more than their non-organic, non-fair trade counterparts. At 89$ a pair, Etik & Co’s shoes defy the long-held belief that only the well-to-do can afford ethical purchases: the traditional Chuck Taylor converse currently runs for 90$.
From a mutual respect and conviction in each other’s vision, Pure Art and Etik are collaborating to make these shoes even more world-changing than they already are: when purchased via our online or Hudson-based boutique, 15$ will automatically be donated to Pure Art’s brand-new day-care centre in the Pucallpa-based Hub of Hope.
This past March, Pure Art Foundation’s volunteers not only built two new homes in the impoverished community of Manantay, but also the foundation’s first day care— El Cuidador de La Luz —that will offer its services to the young mothers who are enrolled in our sewing and entrepreneurial workshops. The radiantly-painted day care, that opened this Friday with the enrolment of 17 children, was built in shining memory of Ben McKinnon, the founders’ son.
Ben, beloved by the children in Pucallpa where he documented their living conditions and the foundation’s progress, was known by friends and family for his spot-on taste in fashion. Aside from his camera and his passport, all-black sneakers were a trademark of “the Ben look.” Now, thanks to Etik & Co, the “Ben look” can give back to the world, to the environment, to animals, and to the yellow-walled day care that is currently beaming like a star in the outskirts of Pucallpa, Peru.