When you’re trying to find clothing that’s made in the USA, it’s fairly easy to track down funky, one-of-a-kind items from indie designers and well-made investment (read: expensive) pieces from higher end labels. But what about the basics, the stuff you wear every single day — jeans, hoodies, t-shirts, tights, sneakers, pencil skirts, etc? Luckily for us, there are still some awesome companies producing these must-have clothing items right here in America. They can be a little tough to find, but that’s why I did the work for you! Click through to check out 10 everyday basics, all American-made, all great quality, all $100 or less…
Tag Archives: compassionate fashion
Tradlands is a new fashion company based in San Francisco with a simple mission: “Our intention is to make the best clothing for our customer, the woman who drifts towards the men’s section and thinks, ‘I wish they made this for me.’” Using fabrics and materials from the US, Tradlands designs and manufactures all of their timeless, tomboy-inspired shirts in downtown San Francisco.
I just got one of their henley shirts (pictured on the right), and I was completely blown away by the quality. After spending so many years filling my closet with flimsy Forever 21 blouses, it’s refreshing to feel fabric with a bit of weight to it, and strong seams that won’t disintegrate after two wearings. Tradlands makes the kind of shirts you’ll own and love for years, which, combined with the ethical sourcing and attention to detail, easily justifies the price.
The other thing I love about Tradlands is that even though the brand’s aesthetic is very tomboy-ish, these shirts would look just as good with a pencil skirt and high heels as they would with slouchy jeans and sneakers. So cute and versatile. Want to give Tradlands a try? Click through to check out some of their awesome options…
When it comes to major athletic brands, most companies’ abhorrent manufacturing practices leave a lot to be desired. And then there’s New Balance. Take a spin through one of their stores or pick up one of their colorful athletic shoes and you’ll probably find a little surprise printed on the tag: “Proudly Made In The USA.”
While other brands have moved more and more of their production overseas, New Balance has increased their domestic manufacturing jobs by 45% since 1995, and have never — I repeat, NEVER — laid off a domestic factory worker. Currently, 25% of New Balance shoes (that’s 7 million pairs a year) are made in the USA. If you want to support American workers, pamper your feet, and look fabulous at the gym, New Balance is absolutely the way to go. I’ve picked out a few of my favorite sneakers (and one magical pair of socks) from their USA collection. Click through to check ‘em out!
Zady is a sustainable fashion shop founded by friends Maxine Bédat and Soraya Darabi. Bédat and Darabi both worked in the non-profit sector, and noticed that their closets were overflowing with fast-fashion garments that were cheap to buy and quick to fall apart. They’re hoping Zady, which focuses on showcasing high-quality, sustainably produced brands, will be an antidote to that.
“We go to each brand and ask where are your products made, and that narrows it down. 99.9 percent say they don’t know, or it’s a really vague response,” Bédat told Stylecaster of Zady’s selection process. “So we find those brands that do know. They have to know like the back of their hands how their supply chains work. Where they were made and designed and where the materials come from. We eliminate anyone who just doesn’t know, because it’s a sure sign that that they don’t fit our mission.”
And what is their mission? It’s “to combat the fast-fashion craze by providing a platform for only those companies that care about timeless style and solid construction.”
Sounds pretty good to us. Above, check out pieces from Zady’s carefully curated sustainable collection.
There are so many reason to love the women-owned clothing line Dobbin, but here are a few:
1. They make all of their clothing in the U.S.
2. They use the same quality fabrics and factories as much, much more expensive designer labels, but keep all their prices below $200.
3. Most of their pieces are available in sizes 0-16.
4. Their simple, beautifully tailored styles are flattering and perfect for the office.
Click through to check out 8 awesome mix-and-match basics from their current collection that you’ll reach for again and again come Monday morning…
This post has been a long time coming. I decided to write it on April 24th, 2013, but I didn’t know how to write it; all I knew was I needed to change the way I thought about fashion in a big way, and fast.
April 24th was the day that Rana Plaza, a clothing factory in Bangladesh, collapsed, killing over 1,000 people. The building was not designed or certified to be used as a factory, and even though the workers — the vast majority of whom were women — had reported massive cracks forming in the ceiling the day before the collapse, their supervisors told them they would be fired if they skipped work. So they returned to Rana Plaza to sew cheap dresses and tops that would be sold by companies such as Mango and Walmart, and they died.
One of my Facebook friends summed it up in nine words: “America, your addiction to cheap T-shirts is killing people.”
As a clothes hoarder, fashion writer, frequent shopper, and feminist, I felt an intense wave of guilt in the wake of this tragedy. Keep reading »
Back in April, hundreds of workers died after a building collapse at the Rana Plaza factory in Bangladesh. In the wake of this tragedy, the Bangladesh Safety Accord was created, with the aim of ensuring safety for clothing manufacturer employers. It’s overseen by the United Nation’s International Labor Organization, and signees to the accord agree to regular factory inspections and improved safety measures and standards at factories that produce their garments.
But guess who’s not down to protect the lives of their factory workers? TopShop, that’s who. Since April, more than 80 companies have signed the accord, including H&M, Mango and even Abercrombie & Fitch. (You can check out the full list here.) TopShop agreed to sign in May, but has yet to actually take pen to paper — even after they were urged by the British government to do so in June. Keep reading »
Pikolinos shoes encourages cooperative projects and promotes sustainability by employing a “zero paper” policy in its factories and offices. They also use vegetable dying where possible, and water-based dyes and solvent-free glues to reduce environmental impact. This year, they created a special Maasai project, which helps fund development projects in the Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya.
Plus, they’re stuff is really cute and on-trend. Check out our fave Pikolinos styles in the gallery!
Compassionate fashion isn’t just on land — it’s also in the water. You can help save the oceans while you’re in the ocean by supporting sustainable swimwear brands. The suits in the following gallery may cost more than you might typically spend on swimwear, but that’s because they’re made at a living wage, and are often produced by hand.
Take a look and then get out there in the water!
I’m well acquainted with designer Nanette Lepore because I’ve lusted after many of her gorgeous dresses while browsing the racks at my favorite department stores. But before I read the amazing book Overdressed, I didn’t know that Lepore was one of the few designers who still produces the majority of her clothing in the USA — to be exact, 80% of her line is made in New York City. This manufacturing decision comes at a price: most of her pieces retail for between $250 and $400, but you’re paying for good craftsmanship, better fabric quality, and the assurance that the people who make your clothes are being compensated fairly. If you’ve been saving up for a really special dress, I would suggest taking a gander at Nanette Lepore’s offerings. Click through to check out some of my favorites!