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2021: The Year of Guilt-Free, Feel-Good Shopping

Getting dressed is one of the first things we do in the morning. Getting undressed, one of the last. In between this ritual, our clothes comfort, adorn, and advocate us. Without them, we’d be cold and bare.

The clothes you chose to wear each day make a difference on a personal, and also, planetary level. During Boxing Day sales and Black Friday hype, we easily overlook the latter. Yet, last November, Boohoo’s scandalous 8p dress and offensive 25p high heels detonated social media backlash with environmental and ethical concern. Kerry Bannigan, founder of the Conscious Fashion Campaign, asked “Is an unfathomable cheaply priced garment truly worth the depletion of our water, soil and air?”

Hitting rock bottom, now is the prime time to consciously rethink and remodel this modern-day behemoth. To unfasten ourselves from this fashion industry which is culpable for 10% of humanity’s carbon emissions (more than all international flights and maritime shipping combined), as well as burning a rubbish truck full of clothes every second. We may not fully comprehend the noxious effect of the 60% of our clothes made from synthetic materials; derived from petrochemicals. Plastic particles from washing these synthetic garments contribute to 35% of the plastic polluting our oceans.

With Finnish roots, is a global marketplace for sustainable fashion. It showcases, supports, and champions over 100 pioneering, planet- and people-friendly fashion brands from Estonia to New Zealand. It is the Asos for changemakers: an ecosystem for the future. We are proud to call IVALO one of our Founding Members at Positive.

“As we come from Finland, the land of thousands of lakes known for the spectacular forests and stone-faced nation, it is of the utmost importance for us to do our best to preserve our beloved planet and to love and respect every form of life.” Located in Lapland, northern Finland, the village of Ivalo thrums with the natural beauty of snowy pine forests and opalescent Northern Lights. Give the place a Google and you’ll understand their reverent inspiration.

IVALO have pioneered a rigorous Sustainability Framework to give clear information on each of their brand’s status. It can be broken down into 6 criteria: 1) Lower carbon footprint 2) Sustainable materials 3) Transparent value chain 4) Design in circular economy 5) Good working conditions 6) Responsible online shopping. From here, each brand is granted a status: Sustainable Brand, Ambitious Sustainability Developer, or the gilt crown: Sustainability Leader. This brings actionable transparency to fashion.

Lithuanian Sustainability Leader Distyled believes, ‘to be original, you need to get in touch with the origin itself’—i.e., get down with Mother Earth. UK brand Katharine Hamnett is all about ‘MAKING CLOTHES FOR THE GOOD OF ALL LIVING THINGS’, whilst Czech fashion outlet BeWooden crafts high-quality bowties, cufflinks and accessories from excess wood from local woodworking studios. Minimalism, upcycling, slow fashion, and innovation are trends that unite.

The 5 Ps of the Positive Compass (Planet, People, Places, Partners and Purpose) are embedded within IVALO’s Sustainability Framework. The Planet comes first through the use of organic, recycled materials free from toxic chemicals. Many people are uplifted by supporting small-scale producers, designers and artisans, whilst local ecosystems are honoured and preserved. Partnerships thrive in building this community platform of like-minded, ambitious individuals. And their Purpose: to generate a fashion industry which respects every form of life.

So, let 2021 be the year we trade fast fashion for slow fashion, swap heedless spending for conscious frugality, and realise the power of shifting our spending habits—for the profit of the planet.


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