Friday, June 1, 2012

'Fashion with a Conscious'
Levant  boutique,  located in Goodwood,  has built a reputation on the emphasis  it places on ethics in all its ranges of clothing, accessories and giftware. In their own words, it's "fashion for the green at heart, socially conscious and environmentally aware consumer".  Everything sold in the store is carefully selected by owner Corrine Ormsby based on a strict criteria of environment, humanity and community.  This was the main motivation in starting up the business. Thus, expanding to carry Fairtrade certified clothing seemed the natural progression. 

The Fairtrade certification ensures that key requirements in wages, labour conditions, traded prices and sustainability are met. The certification aims to readjust the traditional discrimination towards poorer producers of goods when trading on the global market.

On the 17th of May, as part of Fair Trade Fortnight, Levant held  a Fairtrade fashion parade called 'Fashion with a Conscious'. It featured pieces from label Keokjay and One Colour.  Unlike most generic, sweat-shop made clothing,  Corrine notes that all the pieces come with 'individual stories'.

 Red dress - One Colour
Black trench coat - One Colour

The One Colour labels intention since its inception was to focus primarily on the people who make their line.  Their 'Peripheral Vision' collection mixes East African grown cotton jersey with Organic jersey elements and hand-beaded details  and all the while, ensures a 'Living Wage' is paid to the tailors in Kenya.

 Dress - Keokjay
KeoK’jay, means bright green or fresh in Khmer, and is a social enterprise that employs HIV positive women in Cambodia to produce eco-friendly fashion clothing and accessories. Their  designs utilize environmentally friendly processes and materials, and have a unique hand touch. Through their production they give their producers a livelihood that has great impact for themselves and their families .

 Black flared skirt -One Colour
White T-shirt -One Colour 

As the Fair Trade movement grows exponentially, Corrine notes how  "We love the social change that is happening with consumers becoming much more aware of the power of their consumer dollar.  We love that people are spreading the message of how easy it is to be gorgeously responsible. "  A visit to the store proves Corrines point, that being fashionable and conscionable are not  mutually exclusive.

Find out more at:
or find them on facebook.
Find out more about Fair Trade at:

By Hiranya Ekanayake