SAVE THE WORLD IN STYLE
“ …by wearing UNBORING clothes with character luxurious touched in the most sustainable ways possible. “
As House of Minzkou, intending to control the impact we have upon the environment in which we wake up, work, breathe and live is not some kind of a duty; in fact it is a passion. We believe that what we do to our nature is our unexpressed inner reflection or vice versa. Nature and We are connected in an invisible way and that etheric chord affects each other though we are not yet conscious about it. What we give Gaia is what we will receive and treating her in most possible gentle ways is what we will get in return because as Creators of Minzkou we know that we deserve to be treated in that same delicate ways too.
“Sustainability does not have to be Boring”
What is Sustainability?
Minzkou believes there are so many things we all can do in regards to conserving resources and keeping delicate ecosystems of our planet in harmony through sustainable practices. What exactly Sustainability – the trendiest buzzword of the decade- means?
There isn’t a common up-to-date definition of sustainability everybody agrees. Sustainability can be seen as a movement, concept, systematic need of humankind or can be considered simply as a lifestyle. Here are a few definitions of the word ‘Sustainability’:
Sustainability in Fashion Industry
Before going further, there is one question waiting for an answer: Is acting environmentally sustainable in business (or as an individual) optional and part of one’s free will or everybody is obliged to act so?
As House of Minzkou, we believe that being environmentally sustainable is a rational choice of the hyperconscious minds, a response to the calling of one’s surroundings. Not a contemporary trend with mandatory attendance. Neither a cult nor a new age doctrine. Can’t be ‘planted’ by teachings of gurus either. So if keeping up with this sustainability shift rigidly doesn’t resonate with who you are, or what one’s business is that’s fine. It won’t make anybody any less heroic nor less worthy. One may have completely different duties to fulfill in this lifetime and we think it’s wise to keep the focus on that mission. Because carving the ethos of a business around sustainability and ethical practices require higher budget, investigation, quality control, research and development but most importantly takes so much time just to give life to 1 single design compare to other businesses. It’s a lot of hard work.
Sustainability in fashion industry can be categorized and explained under the titles of economic, social and environmental. Equivalent of these titles can be interchangeable with Planet, People and Profit. We want to discuss these topics through our sustainability policies and practices, how fashion houses are contributing to this ever-growing problem and where Minzkou stands as an emerging apparel brand in the industry against these Giants.
Minzkou Sustainability Policies and Procedures
Having minimal negative impact on the global environment, local community and caring for the future of human what fuels Minzkou’s soul to provide planet-friendly clothes. Therefore, unlike other fashion houses who are ignorant though having enough power, we created our own Sustainability Policies and Procedures that we apply in our company as Minzkou.
- Eco-Conscious Sourcing Policy
- No-Waste Policy
- Upcycling Policy
- Cruelty-Free Policy
- Body, Mind and Soul Alignment Policy
- Better Together Policy
1 - ECO-CONSCIOUS SOURCING POLICY
We do our best to control the fabrics to obtain most organic and finest quality for creation of unique, eco-friendly designs that are unreproducible (hard to imitate by competitors).
One of the main troubles Minzkou faces is that it’s quite hard to find resources/sellers that solely sells organic or eco-friendly materials and fabrics. It requires so much investigation and research to design what we design and having to go from places to places to source sustainable organic materials causes considerable hardship to our business due to this shortage.
To illustrate, The Gaia Jacket line of Minzkou are made of about 5-8 different types of yarns. We go around the shops/manufacturers and detect the products that are more organi; picking threads that contains more of wool and less chemicals for example. Some yarns are thin, some are thicker than expected… That’s the reason why sometimes we start designing the product after detecting the materials . Due to matching different kinds of materials often instead of knitting or threading them with machines, we’d have to go into traditional ways of knitting by hand. As a result, in mass production if it takes 5-6 yarns to make one jacket, in our case it takes almost 10-15 yarns to create only 1 product. Not even mentioning the extended time periods of producing it by hand. Minzkou’s desire to make unique products with sustainable materials in ethical practices drags us into different manufacturing process.
All the procedures mentioned above require much higher budget, investigation, quality control for the handwork, research and development but most importantly takes so much time just to give life to 1 single design.
2 - NO-WASTE POLICY
3 - UPCYCLING POLICY
Disclaimer: Minzkou does NOT use “used, vintage” materials in process of producing clothes. We use materials that are absolutely NEW and unused.
Supporting long-term ecological balance by not being harmful and wasteful towards natural resources and being conscious of the choices we make in our business to support regrowth and regeneration for the future human is a never-ending passion for Minzkou. One of the policies we have in the House is to support this motivation is to upcylce.
Minzkou Upcycling Policy & Procedures involves finding creative ways to use textiles in less harmful ways, usually resulting in one-of-a-kind items.
We upcycle discraded or unused materials/garments and design clothes of higher quality than the original version of that material. Here is an example of how we do:
Reference: MYKIZA BUSTIER LINE BY MINZKOU
For Mykiza Line we purchase chunk of fabrics from the manufacturers that won’t be used for any reason and our artisans create threads out of them by cutting the garments into specific size and thickness.
Cutting these fabrics in to yarns by hand into very specific thickness and thinness requires an enormous attention. Moreover, braiding this type of fabric makes the end product very hard to finish so our artisans have to put more effort and time on them while beading. This way instead of making thousands of 1 same bustier, we make bustiers that are similar to each other in different colors and variations that are absolutely unique.
As mentioned above, fabrics that are somehow aren’t useful anymore are being used in the production of Mykzia Collection. These garments doesn’t have continuity. Due to the fact that, we can’t mass produce the tops thus they are always limited in quantity/color ( BUT let’s not get confused again, materials are all new!) Minzkou doesn’t care of stock. We care more for unique designs and how to keep them eco-friendly and unreproducible by competitors. And crazy and bold !
Even though the word “up-cycle” sounds like a more affordable way of production strategy and gives an illusion of “ being economical ”, the procedure of the Mykiza Collection actually is pricier and requires much more time and effort. Most importantly it costs much more than any other textile production other houses practice. Our passion for a greener world and excitement of designing one-of-a-kind clothes is preventing Minzkou for making big profits that’s necessary for the continuation of our existence as a start-up.
Fun fact: MYKIZA is the combination of two words: MYKONOS & IBIZA – located in Spain and Greece, these Mediterranean and Aegean Islands are an absolute inspiration to the House.
4 - CRUELTY-FREE POLICY & PROCEDURE
- No Real Leather
- No Real Fur
- No Harm
There is no further explanation needed and it’s not negotiable.
5 - BODY & MIND ALIGNMENT POLICY
Toxic Wardrobes Toxic Souls
Since fast fashion has risen rapidly for the past decade, toxicity level of all kinds in our lives has also been on the rise. When fast fashion is done in unconscious ways, it results in this equation :
Fast Fashion = Disposable clothes + Obliging trends x Women copying other women – Self worth
The Fashion industry has successfully convinced we should be wearing the latest trends at all times at all cost and constant reduction in production costs created what we now call Fast Fashion! In order to sell latest fashion items easily, they are made cheap. Some cheap products often contain harmful chemicals made perhaps with unethical practices (to keep prices low.)
By creating illusion and hype through celebrity/influencer endorsements, new generation is being drawn into a fashion matrix. In this illusion, they make up an avatar with a delusional identity where they copy every action of “the other girl” . This is actually the main problem created by fast fashion and would like to focus on this topic in a Blog post.
We as House of Minzkou want to urge everyone reconsider DETOXING the closet, by choosing more quality products. It’s undeniable that our clothes have significant affect on our psychology and physicality more than anything else.
DETOX THE CLOSET DETOX THE MIND
Notice how a garment can look so wrinkled, shapeless or worn out ? Well, can we say cheap? To us makes more sense to go to North Williamsburg (New York) swing by one of those famous consignment stores of Brooklyn and buy a vintage pick, at least this way you’re contributing to a community polluting world less. Just because you can maintain a fashion-forward wardrobe without braking the bank, doesn’t mean you don’t sacrifice something else. Buying unquality products you’re not only giving those companies your money but alas, sacrificing the self-worth subconsciously.
How to support Sustainability if you can’t afford?
Opposite of fast fashion is High-end fashion, thus, the question comes to mind If one should be buying expensive clothes to be considered ” environment-friendly ” ?
Minzkou just wants you to reconsider, re-monitor the psychical, mental and psychological effects of these concepts on your well-being so that current shopping choices of wearing disposable clothes can be swapped with a better alternative that’s in good correlation to your budget.
At least, adopting a lifestyle where one can practice becoming less wasteful towards the environment is a perfect start!
6 - BETTER TOGETHER
Supporting local businesses that are owned or operated by our neighbors is one of our primary goals as a sustainably conscious business. It’s our highest intention to invest in the well-being of our community and therefore helping them to carve its future is the same as contributing in our mutual future.
Having produce some of the fabrics woven with organic cottons (like the Chevron Set) that were harvested by local farmers.
Focusing on more traditional ways like handcrafting to support local talents is an exciting choice for us. We search for talented women throughout the countries we work in to handcraft our designs. Additionally, we’ve so far created part-time jobs for over 50 women who have shown extreme sewing/beading skills but never been discovered and employed by other gigantic companies.
We source fabrics/materials from family-operated small manufacturing companies as well as micro businesses who shares same aspiration of serving quality materials.
The fashion industry is one of the biggest polluter on Earth.
When products are being made containing all those toxic chemicals, dyes, bleaches are later on being dumped into rivers ,seas and contaminating Earth’s waters resulting in desertification. Among other reasons, climate change in our view is the most demanding issue of the century and fashion industry is a very considerable part of it. That’s why forming the brand around sustainability to reduce the impact has never been just an option; for us indeed is an essential necessity.
From soil degradation to rain forest destruction to greenhouse gas emmisions, there are so much to talk but HEY, would like to remind Minzkou is not a brand that’s educating people on this matter. Minzkou is a designer apparel brand for women choosing to produce its designs with sustainable solutions whenever it can.
Are ALL Minzkou Items Made Sustainably?
No, not every single item of Minzkou is made sustainably. Some designs requires different material necessity in regards to elasticity, wrinkling matters, structure, hold and so on. Therefore, many other products are done with regular manufacturing procedures and we use materials/garments that are not quote and quote eco-friendly.
To us perfection is intending to improve ourselves constantly and wanting to take every possible corrective action when necessary. Let us also remind you that perfection can only exist with imperfections. Therefore, we have a promise to ourselves that we will constantly improve Minzkou till we work with our environment in total harmony and will get to a point where we will take less and less corrective actions, create more sustainable and ethical designs..
Once again, Minzkou is a designer apparel brand for women choosing to produce its designs with sustainable solutions whenever it can.
Minzkou Against the Giant F. Industry
Minzkou is an emerging designer brand that still has too many limitations. We are a very small clothing company with a gigantic planet-friendly mindset and intention. It’s very challenging to keep things maintainable and environmentally friendly while trying to exist among gigantic fashion houses who have immense power but use it to destroy.
Cost reduction through sustainable practices also isn’t valid for our business, it’s completely the opposite. Shifting Minzkou’s business practices into ecologically conscious mind when producing the designs require investigation, strict quality control over hand craftsmanship, research and development but most importantly takes so much time just to give life to 1 single design. All of these requirements results in extremely increased costs and extremely higher budget is required. It’s already a very long way to build recognition among the industry giants and keeping our designs planet-friendly just triples the costs. That’s the reason why “Reducing the impact on our ecology through our procedures is a passion for Minzkou, we simply can’t afford to abuse the buzzword of the decade because this is personal devotion that’s uplifting our spirit.”
Since there are so many companies greenwashing potential customers, we want to point out at some of ” The Hidden Costs of Being Sustainable ” Minzkou bares :
- Avoiding using chemicals
- Using organic dyes
- Sourcing eco-friendly materials and garments
- Research and development of sustainable service providers
- Integrating limited sources into product designs
- Less freedom in creativity
- Additional costs of raising awareness through ads
- Educating local partners
- Low demand- increased price tags- less sales
- Less transparency due to competition which causes lack of understanding of the process ,therefore, no appreciation among community.
- Less appreciation causing less motivation
- Increased cost on all chain of production
- Loss in profitability
We dare and encourage every one of you just to pay attention to big fashion houses on how they use “Sustainability “to gain new niche of customers. If Minzkou -as a very small emerging brand- can do this much edgy, ecological, luxurious products we are quite sure those Giants can do a million times more amazing stuff on this regard other than making recycled plain T-shirts that looks like it teleported from 1920s. .