I use only natural dyes, and many of them are certified organic. My go-to dyestuffs are walnut husks, madder root, buckthorn bark, lac and indigo, because they have the best colourfastness of all natural dyes. All my dyes and mordants are compliant with by the Global Organic Textile Standard, GOTS.
My studio runs on 100% renewable energy. All my dyestuff is applied as mulch or compost on our certified organic farm. My packaging is plastic-free, has a low carbon footprint and is recyclable (or you can use it as mulch in your garden).
All my fibres and yarns are sourced directly from small farms, community projects, and from mills and suppliers that make a true effort for people and environment, with the key criteria being animal welfare, land management to protect soil health and biodiversity, a chain of custody for seamless traceability of the fibres from farm to mill, and a full commitment to ensure that there is no slavery or human trafficking in any part of the business. To learn more about the certifications of my yarns, scroll to the bottom of this page.
Where possible, I source my silks from GOTS certified organic Ahimsa ("peace silk" - no moths are harmed during silk harvest) production.
My cashmere is produced under the regulations of the Sustainable Fibre Alliance.
When available, I buy finest pashmina directly from Vishwanath. Every spring, he combs the family's Changthangi goats to harvest this luxury fibre, and spins it by hand.
Photo credit: Catherine Allié, Ladakh
My merino and merino blend yarns are either from certified organic farms on the Falklands, from a small farm in Tasmania, or from a small producer in Germany whose yarns are all OEKO-TEX100 PC1 certified (safe for babies).
Photo credit: Nan Bray, Tasmania
The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) is the most comprehensive international textile processing standard for organic fibers, including ecological and social criteria, backed up by independent certification of the entire supply chain. Criteria for production include organic fiber content, use of heavy metals, restriction on bleaches, dyes, procedures to minimize waste and no PVC packaging of the products. The social criteria include no forced or child labor, the right to collective bargaining, safe and hygienic working conditions, protection of wages and working hours, no discrimination and hours management.
OEKO-TEX is a test and certifying system for textile that focusses on restricting the use of harmful substances in textile manufacturing. The demands are very strict and are monitored regularly. A certificate has to be renewed every year. Although the label focusses on the health aspect of the textile product, the guidelines for the use of harmful substances also has interfaces with the ecological dimension of sustainability. A fabric that is certified as STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX is proven to be skin-friendly in various classes, including products for infants, products with direct skin contact and decoration material. The closer to the skin, the stricter the demands. Textiles certified safe for babies carry the OEKO-TEX PC1 label.
The SFA encourages the adoption of responsible production practices that minimise environmental impact, safeguard herder livelihoods and meet high animal welfare standards.
Seal International is member of the SFA and operates within a strict regulatory framework that respects the supply chain, people, animals and the environment. Their key criteria are: (1) Animal welfare. (2) Sustainable land management to protect soil health, biodiversity and native species. (3) Chain of custody to ensure that the identity of the fibre maintained from farm to final product.