Why choose sustainable fashion
Made in Italy?
Made in Italy is a real brand: for over half a century it has been synonymous with quality, craftsmanship, style and creativity all over the world. Ambassadors of Made in Italy are many economic sectors, first of all food, design and yes, even fashion.
In the field of fashion, it is certainly easy to choose among the numerous Italian proposals, but it is not enough, it is important to choose well.
Today, even more urgently than in the past, it is necessary to evaluate the environmental and social impact and move towards a Made in Italy sustainable fashion.
Is the Italian fashion sector able to focus on real change and offer positive models in terms of sustainability, primarily protecting the environment and people?
There are encouraging signs. If up to 4-5 years ago Made in Italy sustainable fashion was a rarity, today we are witnessing a certain ferment: new textile companies, of clothing and accessories, are born, committed to this front, while existing brands are taking the path of sustainability – but pay attention to greenwashing, that is a sustainable commitment only on the facade.
Among the companies born in recent years and founded on the values of sustainability since the beginning – often they are micro or small companies, but with a lot of enthusiasm, desire and ability to grow – there are also CasaGIN and La Mia Maglietta.
At the dawn of Made in Italy sustainable fashion, CasaGIN has been able to look far ahead and lay the foundations for a solid development. The e-commerce of La Mia Maglietta was born from a woman’s passion for drawing and painting.
100% Made in Italy sustainable fashion: “We wanted to create a product that was good for people and the environment, we looked for it all over the world and we found it close to home”
In this way begins the story of Daniela Prandin, CEO of CasaGIN, a company founded in 2017 and manufacturer of sustainable underwear and leisure clothing. The brand is very proud of its Italian spirit which includes the entire supply chain, from spinning to weaving, up to the packaging of the garments.
“In Italy – explains Daniela – we have excellences in the production of sustainable and innovative fabrics. There are also many laboratories which, starting with the affirmation of Italian fashion, over 50 years ago, have acquired great expertise in the manufacture of garments for third parties, to which they may have added their own brand over time. With the development of fast fashion and the relocation of production and purchases to cheaper foreign countries, these workshops have found themselves in great difficulty, they have had to cut staff and today they are alive only because they are small and family-run”
The story is well known:
many sectors of the Italian economy risk losing the skills of many artisans who know how to work well and want to make well-made products.
CasaGIN found these excellences and its strength was precisely that of putting the best Italian sustainable fabrics, exported all over the world, into the hands of these workers. The CasaGIN team has worked and works together with its suppliers to develop sustainable, technically well made and innovative garments. All this with an eye always attentive to sustainability.
Daniela continues: “We didn’t want to position ourselves in the sphere of luxury, but to offer products at affordable prices and well made, comfortable and durable. We have succeeded precisely thanks to the production resources we have involved here in Italy: dyeing, weaving and garment workshops that aim to constantly improve and are proud to contribute to our excellent production. After all, Made in Italy is appreciated precisely for its excellence. They are also companies that are making great strides in sustainability, for example by obtaining energy from solar panels, recycling water in the case of dry cleaners, reducing the use of harmful substances and facing the certification process. For example, we have a local GOTS certified organic cotton jersey supplier and we know how many resources it took to achieve this certification! “
CasaGIN sells in Italy through its e-commerce and in many organic and wellness products stores. If it is true that it is difficult for the consumer to understand exactly what he is buying, what is behind the product he is holding, when he wears a CasaGIN garment it is easy to retain him. On the strength of its local success, the brand has recently begun to tiptoe through foreign markets, aware of exporting a piece of Italian excellence.
Artistic inspiration and craftsmanship: as in the shops of the past but with an eye towards innovation
On tiptoe Nancy Marchini instead came to create the brand La mia Maglietta from her innate passion for painting. Today she sells t-shirts and sweatshirts with prints and decorations entirely made by her.
In her case, it was not possible to buy in Italy the garments to be customized. Nancy explains: “I buy sweaters in Bangladesh with the Fair Wear Foundation certification which promotes ethical fashion and aims to protect the workers of the entire clothing chain. I would like to find a supplier here in Italy, but by requesting low quantities, the cost is too high and I cannot sell my clothes at out-of-market prices. I hope to succeed in the future, I will be proud to be able to say that I have a 100% Italian production!”
Nancy’s Made in Italy sustainable fashion perfectly embodies the concept of craftsmanship: it starts from a drawing, digitizes it, performs print tests to make it better and calibrates the colors with her digital printer, with water-based inks. If the project involves adding color by hand, sewing decorations or other, Nancy grabs the brush or sits at the sewing machine and completes the garment. Each cloth is numbered and reproduced in a limited edition, like a work of art.
“After all, a t-shirt is a canvas in motion, the manifesto of the modern man who wants to say something about himself. Each drawing tells a story and an emotion. Many garments are made at the customer’s request and in this way I enter the lives of other people, listening to their stories to arrive at a synthesis to wear”.
That of La mia Maglietta is therefore a slow fashion, completely different from the canons of fast fashion. To make this type of product it takes time, planning and manual skills; on the other hand, they are garments made to last over time. This is a concept that adds value to Made in Italy sustainable fashion: evokes the traditional artisan workshops capable of renewing themselves, focuses more on the expression of their creativity than on current fashion trends, aims at excellence.
Nancy concludes: “Mine are basic and at the same time versatile t-shirts: they can be worn with jeans but also in more classic contexts”. And this, thanks to the intrinsic value that Made in Italy sustainable fashion possesses.
The value of a clothing or an accessory is more important than the price. But it is also more important than the brand.
A strong but necessary statement. Because it is important to move from appearance to substance. Made in Italy sustainable fashion has proven to be able to offer beautiful products, well made and with an excellent quality/price ratio.
Does the consumer know what he is buying? Fashion has always focused on aesthetics, image and prestige but something is changing. In one year, from September 2019 to September 2020, Google searches related to eco-friendly fashion have doubled. Interest in sustainable fashion is increasing, a way of producing and proposing fashion perfectly in line with the tradition of Made in Italy.
The consumer is increasingly attentive, he begins to be interested in what’s behind the garment or the accessory he buys. This is why all sustainable companies must speak to consumers, communicate their values and the values of their products.
Today, sustainability is no longer just a cost in the corporate balance sheet, but has become an important commercial opportunity: the consumer wants to be informed and companies must invest time and resources in communication.