For the Sustainable Suitcase: Brands to Trust
The team at Positive Luxury – a UK-based platform promoting sustainable brands – have put together a list of their top ethical buys. Here are some of their favourite guilt-free purchases and why each company meets their standards of responsibility and quality.
Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Chronograph (£10,250 / US$13,450)
The Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Chronograph is the first mechanical watch that allows a new time zone to be set with a single rotation, allowing the wearer to check the time in another zone before easily resetting it to their own.
The first Special Pilot’s Watch left the IWC factory in 1936, originally built for the Royal Air Force.
IWC have been continuously working on reducing their carbon dioxide emissions; since summer 2007, they have been certified as a climate-neutral company. The use of alternative energy, alongside innovative production and building technology, has reduced the company’s CO2 emissions by 90%. Since 2007, their electricity comes entirely from green hydroelectric energy and they use recycled rain water to flush their toilets.
Voluntary payments are made to compensate for the CO2 emissions that cannot be entirely eliminated, funding environmental projects in developing and emerging countries. IWC also developed a scheme to encourage environmental awareness in its employees, rewarding those who make independent efforts to reduce their CO2 footprints, amongst other initiatives.
Yellow-gold bracelet (£3,300 / US$4,329)
This 18K yellow-gold bracelet, with a width of 12.1mm, is Fairmined certified, which means the gold comes from small-scale mining operations with responsible practices.
JEM – which stands for ‘Jewellery Ethically Minded’ – aims to produce jewellery in an entirely sustainable way. For their products, they use Fairmined ethical gold, guaranteeing the material’s traceability from the mine to the jewellery box. They are the first French jeweller to work with Fairmined.
Elvis & Kresse
Weekend bag (£299 / US$392) and travel wallet (£99 / US$130)
The Elvis & Kresse weekend bag is made from decommissioned fire hose material and the lining is made from old auction banners. After 25 years of active duty, fighting fires around the UK, the hard-wearing hose has been given a second life as a tough holdall.
The Elvis & Kresse travel wallet is also made from decommissioned fire hose and lined with reclaimed military-grade parachute silk. It has plenty of sections for easily organising all of your travel essentials.
Elvis & Kresse have been reclaiming ‘heroic’ materials ever since the designers fell in love with the London Fire Brigade’s decommissioned hoses in 2005. 50% of the profits from the fire hose range are donated to the Fire Fighters Charity.
The team at Elvis & Kresse imagine a time without landfill, when everything is recycled or composted. For now, they know there are far too many materials destined for the rubbish dump or incinerator. They are constantly searching for more materials to grow their range of bags, belts and wallets, and have rescued over 200 tonnes of waste materials so far.
Travel backgammon board (from £160 / US$210)
This backgammon travel set comes in three sizes and can easily be rolled up and fastened with its leather strap. Made from Okapi’s blesbok leather, it unfolds to form a leather board with 30 checkers. It also comes with three dice.
As a result of the complex manufacturing process, there can only ever be a limited number of each style made per year.
Okapi was founded in Cape Town in 2008 by South African entrepreneur Hanneli Rupert. All of Okapi’s materials and manufacturing are finished entirely in South Africa, from where they have pioneered the use of African game skins, such as blesbok leather, with sustainability and little waste. Blesbok skin can only be treated and tanned for Okapi by a select few, skilled local artisans in the Western Cape. By incorporating them into the products, Okapi is taking what would be waste and creating sustainable employment on the African continent.
In keeping with Okapi’s ethos of ‘creating trade not aid’, they have strived to collaborate with and support grassroots craft groups in Southern Africa. For the 2016 collection, these partners were ZenZulu and MonkeyBiz, both community projects creating sustainable jobs in and around the Cape Town area.
This long, black, leather cord necklace, with its gold-plated porcupine quill, baobab seed and elephant tusk pendants, is the perfect accessory for a safari look. The necklace length is 70cm.
Founder, Yasmine Haji, who is originally from Tanzania, was inspired to create pieces replicating the tusks, teeth and horns of Africa’s wildlife. Devastated by the poaching crisis in Africa, she has formed an alliance with Tusk Trust, promoting wildlife conservation. A portion of the profits from each sale are donated to elephant charities, including Tusk, WildAid and PAMS Foundation.
Robe de Voyage
‘Swift’ shawl in 100% khadi wool (£170 / US$223)
Inspired by the ripples of sunlight on water and crafted from the finest handwoven khadi wool, this lightweight scarf is a travel essential for flights or cool evenings. From the placement of the print to the handmade box they arrive in, each Robe de Voyage garment is unique.
Robe de Voyage is a luxury range of handwoven travel robes and resort-wear. Created by a small team of artisans, the Robe de Voyage collection is designed in London, tailored in Paris by a retired cutter from Dior and individually screen-printed and assembled in Delhi, India. The softest khadi cotton takes weeks to spin and weave by hand and the collection supports local industry in India, whilst maintaining high standards of design and quality.
Plunge one-piece (£115 / US$150) or strapless one-piece (£105 / US$138)
Sleek and classic, this one-piece flatters many shapes and sizes, and comes in either strapless or plunge varieties.
Everything Bodas offers is made from the highest quality fabrics – the finest Tactels and lace from France and Italy are used for lingerie, Supima cotton from the US for nightwear and luxe eight-ply cashmere from Wales for super-soft sweaters and socks. The swimwear fabric has been carefully selected in Italy. All Bodas packaging is environmentally friendly.
Wide-brim Panama hat with white skinny scarf (£230 / US$300)
The wide-brim Panama hat is handwoven in Ecuador in a very fine Cuenca weave (Fino 10/12). It is soft, pliable and great for travelling. The scarf is handmade with washed crêpe de Chine silk, and includes hand-frayed ends and a hand-roll-hemmed edge. As with all chartwellandg pieces, it features the hand-embroidered white signature detail in the bottom corner.
chartwellandg is a British pioneering, luxury resort-wear brand creating handmade clothes and accessories. Moving away from mass production, they focus on purity and minimalism. Hand-rolled hems, hand-plaited leather, silk-covered buttons and hand-embroidered details are all signatures of the brand.
chartwellandg was founded by a husband and wife team who grew up in New Zealand and have since made London their home. All the materials used are sourced and ‘consciously constructed’ in Britain, including the accessories and packaging. The brand’s supply chain is compact and their practices sustainable.
‘One Large’ sunglasses (£295 / US$387)
The One Large sunglasses are the first model Karmoie designed, standing for new beginnings and a clean slate. Designer Kirsten Iversen finds inspiration in vintage style, combined with Scandinavian aesthetics and industrial design. She focuses on clean lines, an organic colour palette and a lightweight, comfortable fit.
Karmoie is an independent Norwegian eyewear brand, aiming to combine the world of fashion with a meaningful and life-altering contribution. For every pair of frames sold, a pair of corrective glasses is given to a person in need.
All frames and parts are made entirely in Italy.
Diamond petite arabesque necklace, (£531 / US$697)
This necklace was inspired by arabesque lantern tiles from Morocco and is bead-set with four round brilliant cut diamonds (F colour, VS clarity, 0.01ct). The chain is a 41cm trace chain with a carabiner clasp.
Luca Jouel is a boutique Australian fine jewellery brand that is committed to using ethically-sourced materials. Each piece is made by expert jewellery-makers in Australia using special hand-finishing touches. They work with suppliers who comply to international standards, such as the Kimberley Certification Scheme, and Tereena Lucas, founder of the brand, is dedicated to sourcing her gemstones and precious metals responsibly. The luxurious packaging is made of bamboo and can be repurposed for other uses.
Lucas also supports the Australian Childhood Foundation by donating a percentage of her sales.
SS7 cardholder (£85 / US$112)
These colourful cardholders – 7x4cm – have two outside pockets and an inner 5.5x4cm compartment. The logo is finished in gold. The Moroccan designer, Nezha Alaoui, is inspired by New York and the desert, her work reflecting both the vibrancy of the city and the purity of nature.
Based in Paris, Maison Mayshad is a luxury handbag brand seeking to make a difference in this world beginning with an approach to fashion and luxury. As a ‘lifestyle designer’, Nezha Alaoui wants her pieces to send a clear message: for women to exercise their own will in life. She designs her collections in order to inspire women who seek success. The products are handmade in prestigious Parisians workshops.
GBP to USD conversion accurate as of 31st July 2017.
About Positive Luxury
Positive Luxury connects brands and consumers that care. The mission is to inspire people to buy better and influence brands to do more. The Butterfly Mark – which all the above products have – is recognised as a guarantee of commitment to excellence across all areas of sustainability.
Check out some of Jacada’s luxury hotels and lodges that have also been awarded the Butterfly Mark: