The calls to revolutionize traditional retail are louder than ever. In a world dominated by the clutches of fast fashion with its unethical labor practices and staggering amounts of waste generation, it’s clear that something has to change. But practicing climate-friendly shopping habits that don’t break the bank, eliminate greenwashing and still appeal to personal style isn’t easy. Well, where to begin ?
“Supporting land creators is our raison d’être”
Signal Everpress, the global fashion marketplace at the forefront of the slow fashion revolution since 2016. Since the founding of the brand by CEO Alex Econs, Everpress has grown into one of the largest independent t-shirt design platforms, keeping its philosophy of supporting independent creatives and defending sustainable practices that are important to us. “Our business was based on two principles: zero risk (for the creators who use us) and zero waste,” says Alex. “We will always put two fingers on fast fashion. Our place is simple – making it easy and affordable for people to shop sustainably without bleaching them green in the process.
Everpress’ business model is centered around its community of creatives, who have the tools to create, design and sell their products through the Everpress platform on a pre-order basis. “Supporting local creators is our raison d’être. We are a community for each other,” Alex tells me. “Our creators don’t have to pay any upfront costs because we work on a pre-order model and only print what we sell. And when it comes to production, we take care of the costs, logistics and delivery. That means our creators get more out of the money so they can fund their passions.” It’s this community culture that Alex is most proud of. To date, Everpress has paid out £6 million to creators around the world , funding everything from start-ups to major surgeries, while helping small businesses stay afloat during the pandemic.
“Our company was built on two principles: zero risk and zero waste”
Zero risk, zero waste, this is Everpress’ strategy. Some might say that’s easier said than done, but Alex is eager to take action. “If the fashion industry doesn’t change soon, we will have even more mountains of waste, less choice, less originality and less quality,” he explains. “Our pre-order model is already avoiding dead stock from the landfill, but we know we can do more to combat unethical production in the near term.”
He continues, “We have launched our own brand of blank t-shirts that designers can upload their designs to. These are made from organic cotton and are turned into t-shirts in a Sedex-controlled workshop in Cairo. And why might this be important? “An international and independent organization, Sedex rigorously investigates workplaces according to their four pillars of labor standards, health and safety, the environment and business ethics,” explains Alex. He is proud of Everpress’ association with the organization. This is yet another indication of the platform’s commitment to improving the lives of people and the environment: “The workshop puts its workers first, from paying fair wages to providing transportation and meals. for all employees.
Sustainability isn’t just another buzzword for Everpress – it’s a precedent. “To keep our carbon footprint low, the supplier we use only ships t-shirt orders to our print shops when the shipping containers are full, instead of shipping on demand.” he. “It’s a great example of sustainability in practice. Not a big showy initiative. And while most factories ship products to warehouses using one polybag per garment (which makes a ground waste) – ours uses a recycled and recyclable polybag for 100 garments or no bags at all – just packed straight into the box.
While it’s clear that Everpress is actively seeking to help people embrace a slow fashion lifestyle, even Alex admits it’s no easy task. According to him, the biggest challenge for sustainability in the industry is whether “scale and ethics can co-exist”. He thinks about a recent article written by Everpress Sustainability Editor Sophie Benson, who explores whether there really is an ethical business. “[In the article], a business owner asks if growth would stay true to their brand ethos,” he tells me. “It’s something we’ve always been aware of as we’ve grown and it’s been so ingrained in our pre-order model. For us, it’s about helping people find T-shirts that they want. they love and that will stand the test of time in terms of quality and style. We have never adhered to trends, and because our product cannot be shipped instantly, I believe this prevents people buy on a whim just because.
Thoughts on the “capsule wardrobe”
There is no doubt that Everpress is making a name for itself as a game changer in the industry. But Alex is full of big ideas and knows there is still work to be done to cultivate a better understanding of what it means to be sustainable in a truly tangible way. “We are doing everything in our power to be climate and water positive by 2025, and are also working to become a fully accredited B-corp by the end of this year,” says- he. “We are also in the process of launching a fund for creators and a local mentorship program to continue supporting our creative community,” he adds. “We will continue to focus on other ways to help our creators work with us to create campaigns that make a difference in the world.”
And so in the true spirit of Everpress’ ambition, I leave you with Alex’s parting words: “Look at this space.”
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