If you're a regular reader of the eco|mono blog, you may have noticed we have been doing a few Q&A's recently. We just love hearing from people who are doing great things for the fashion and textile industry and I believe it is only fair that they get to tell their own story.
This week we are speaking with the lovely Susan from KUI. KUI is an Australian based brand that has a love for organic and natural textiles. The ladies behind KUI consciously source sustainable fibres and support those creating positive change. They believe in championing sustainable and ethical practices to create beautiful pieces without compromising aesthetic.
See, now you can understand why we wanted to learn more about their brand right?
When and how did you start KUI?
KUI was officially launched late last year co-founded by my sister Amy and I (Susan). I attended a fashion design course, and in a particular class my textiles lecturer explained the benefits of organic cotton, dyes and natural materials. This new found knowledge together with wanting to create beautiful pieces we couldn't find, inspired us to start.
What was the motivation to build a sustainable and ethical business?
It is something we both care about and so it only made sense to carry that into KUI. We want to continually improve as we grow.
How do you start the design process and what inspires you?
We always start with what we want to wear. We take inspiration from everywhere, it's never just one thing; sometimes it's more of a feeling or scenario we find ourselves in and it flows from there.
Where do you source your fabrics and how do you manage supplier relationships to ensure your ethical and sustainable standards are met?
For this current collection, we have partnered with skilled people in Eastern China who are a member of the Fair Wear Foundation. They share our values and only use 100% OCS (Organic Content Certified) cotton and OCS blended fabrics with low impact dyes. We believe the key to successfully incorporate ethical and sustainable practices into our brand is communication. It’s important to have a open communication especially when connecting internationally. Fair Wear Foundation; an independent, non-profit organisation that works to improve conditions for workers in garment factories. Organic Certified Cotton (OSC); you can learn more about Organic Certified Cotton via the Global Organic Textile Standards (GOTS) webpage here
Can you tell us about the people who make the clothes? Is it just you or do you have a team?
We have a beautiful team of likeminded individuals who make our clothing. We are open to working in all parts of the world that align with our values. Our next collection is being produced in Myanmar. We have some very special handloom pieces and organic cotton pieces which have been naturally hand dyed using plants.
What do you think the future of sustainable fashion looks like?
We are really excited by the movement towards an appreciation of handmade pieces and selecting well made clothing you want to wear many times over.
A BIG thank you to both Amy and Susan for my beautiful dress and tee, they are perfect for summer and yet wearable throughout the year!