When she founded her company, SiiZU, in 2016, Kay Wen had three goals: 1. make great apparel, 2. change the way fashion treated its production, and 3. save the planet.
To Wen, none of these things are mutually exclusive; in fact, they must go hand in hand. So far, her company’s making great progress and all of us at Faire want the world to know about it.
SiiZU products are made from ethically sourced, Fair Trade raw materials. Encouragingly, they’ve also prioritized transparency around where and how they procure materials. The company was built based on the belief that low-impact fabrics are beautiful, high-quality, and comfortable.
Like Faire, SiiZU believes that the environmental impact of the fashion industry is large, wasteful, dangerous, and needs to change––desperately.
We all think SiiZU's sweaters are cute AF.
In an interview with The Good Trade, Wen explained how SiiZU’s values and methods differ from traditional production models: “We have founded SiiZU based on the commitment to do our very best to bring beautiful clothing to our customers without sacrificing the environment…Our commitment truly begins at the source; an example of this is our decision for using organic cotton and Tencel in place of conventional cotton.”
SiiZU avoids conventional cotton due to the devastating level of pesticides and insecticides used in such crops. Instead, SiiZU uses organic cotton grown without any pesticides or insecticides, and combines it with sustainably-harvested Tencel–– a fiber derived from wood pulp using recyclable solvents––to create the comfortable, silky soft feel of its products.
Likewise, the company uses printing techniques for the fabric designs that minimizes environmental damage, a real rarity these days in textiles: all fabric is dyed with water-based ink, and SiiZU’s production partners don’t use any harmful chemicals during the manufacturing processes.
As if that weren’t enough, SiiZU has gone a step further.
The company uses tree fibers in its fabric; so Wen and the rest of her team thought it made perfect sense to counterbalance their carbon footprint by donating to American Forest, an awesome conservation non-profit set on planting 2.7 million trees this year.
Kay Wen, Founder of SiiZU
“We hope that with these steps, SiiZU will eventually become an entirely carbon-neutral company,” says Wen.
Wen and the team at SiiZU also know that producing fashion responsibly doesn’t mean sacrificing quality. In fact, the clothing offered by this company is super soft, luxurious and washing machine safe. This isn’t a magic trick. All this means is that Wen researched different materials until she found the right balance of sustainability and comfort.
“We aim to make shopping consciously an effortless habit, all while making our clothes look and feel incredible.”
Wen’s company is doing more than just providing elegant, ethically sourced clothing—it’s also working to change the way companies present their production process to the public. SiiZU believes that an ethically focused company must know exactly what happens in its partners’ factories.
Same sweater, this time in pink.
“Traditional fashion houses would normally hire auditing companies to scout for factories,” Wen explains.
“However, in order for us to build a deeper understanding beyond just a balance sheet and quality metrics, we have traveled extensively to visit our manufacturing partners. We not only make sure that all of our partners are paying fair wages to their employees and providing [an] acceptable working environment, we also prioritize partners that are as committed to the sustainable cause as we are.”
For Wen and the entire team at SiiZU, it’s just as important to use ethically-focused manufacturers as it is to use sustainable, organic materials. Thanks to Wen’s unflinching vision, SiiZU is quickly moving toward its goals of making great apparel, and changing the way the fashion industry deals with production––and these successes might just help save the planet too.
Make sure you’re in the their corner!
Written by Justin Carroll-Allan
Faire was founded to change the way we think about, and respond to, global poverty––and to change the way we buy things everyday. Faire.Shop is an alternative to the status quo in e-commerce and fast fashion; our marketplace curates 100% ethically sourced goods from all over the world.