London-based eco fashion label Thoreau has launched their second capsule collection `Portobello Bloom´, which blows us away. We love it! “I wanted to create a collection that embodied the spirit of Portobello Road in the warmer months as its gardens explode with colour and different cultures mingle in mutual acceptance and creativity. There is something magical about the place and we hope that people feel some of that when they see the range”, Hannah said.
It totally does! All 7 pieces are beautiful. We love the orange pattern as well as the volumous sleeves which are so British and charming. The collection is exclusively available on thoreauthelabel.com (free shipping to UK and Australia). Portobello Bloom is inspired by the vibrant colors and the energy of Notting Hill. For this collection, creators Hannah and Owen use 100% reclaimed materials sourced from Europe which are printed by local businesses. The entire collection is produced in the UK. Read our full interview with founder Hannah below.
Tell us a bit more about who you are and how did you get started with your eco fashion label Thoreau.
Hannah: Owen and I decided to start Thoreau around 2 years ago. I had worked in the industry for 12 years and was dismayed by what was happening in the world of fast fashion so we decided the time was right to make a stand. In the beginning it was a lot of research trying to pull together all the moving parts involved in a sustainable fashion brand. We had some non-negotiables such as the environment and animal rights which are very important to us as we are both vegan.
Another Important principle for us was that our garments were made by people who are treated with respect and dignity which meant manufacturing here in the UK was a way to ensure fair work conditions while supporting local industry. With these foundations we then set out source deadstock fabrics, the factory, suppliers and everything down to the eco packaging. We launched our debut capsule collection in October 2016.
What inspires you to create clothes that are environmental friendly but also fashionable at the same time?
Hannah: Our core motto that we always come back to is “personal style/collective conscience”. We believe that you don’t have to sacrifice style in order to be a responsible citizen. I wanted to create modern, versatile and affordable pieces for women who love fashion, care about quality and also want the garment to have as minimal impact on the planet as possible.
What are your ethical criteria? And where do you produce your collection?
Hannah: Our key Ethical criteria are:
• Local Manufacturing – supporting the local economy and staying connected to our production process. We create, pattern, grade, print and manufacture in the U.K.
• A light carbon footprint – We track CO2 emissions for all our products, eliminating them where we can and offsetting the rest. All our orders are shipped with a carbon neutral courier.
• Waste management – Throughout the design and production of our collections we seek to minimise the resources we use, and prevent unnecessary waste. This includes fabric sourcing, printing and manufacturing.
• 100% cruelty Free – No animals are harmed in the production of our garments.
You just released your 2nd capsule collection „PORTOBELLO BLOOM“. Of how many pieces exists this collection? And what kind of styles did you create?
Hannah: This is a 7 piece capsule collection. Inspired by the neighborhood surrounding Portobello Road where we work and live, the collection is a nod to the vibrant colours and energy of the area. This collection combines our nostalgic aesthetic with key new details like volumous sleeves, back interest, the paper bag trouser and key colour bright Marigold. The collection will be released across the next month, available exclusively on Thoreauthelabel.com
Your beautiful collection is entirely made from recycled materials. Why did you choose reclaimed materials? And are reclaimed materials your main focus or do you plan to expand your eco-friendly fabric selection?
Hannah: Using reclaimed fabrics is at the core of our brand, there are so many incredible fabrics available that have been disused for whatever reason and utilising these fabrics and giving them new life is why we wanted to start this label. Having said that, we have used a certified peace silk in this collection for the Seville dress and do plan to research and use new certified and innovative fabrics in the future.
What are your plans for the future?
Hannah: Having just launched in October we’re really just enjoying watching the brand grow. We love connecting with our customers and feel encouraged that there are women out there that want to look modern and cool but also really care about the process and what their choices mean for the environment and the people that make the garment. We call these our ‘Babes who give a damn!’
Thank you for the interview Thoreau! Photos: Thearau.