Sustainable and Ethical Choices More Prominent Than Ever for Streetwear Brands
By: Yashashree Samant
A streetwear brand is not just a label on a dress or a logo on a shoe, it’s a lifestyle choice. It’s a symbol of an ideology that it truly believes in, a lifestyle choice that customers make, a statement to the rest of the world. Streetwear brands that have come up in the last few years have truly believed in this philosophy. Inspired by niche cultures and communities, it was a given that these brands would be sustainable and follow ethical labor practices.
There were several streetwear brands that delved even deeper, not only to make their products look appealing but were really conscious about the work that they did and how it would be perceived. They wanted to give back to the world, help the greater society and add value to others’ lives. Tons of streetwear brands have stepped up to this challenge, finding interesting ways to support the local community around them, creating opportunities for artisans, giving them a larger platform than ever before, finding avenues to implement specific ‘give back’ programs, and so on.
In the last year, the world was struggling to deal with the pandemic and imposed strict lockdowns or home quarantine. Quite a few people who could afford it, turned their boredom to online shopping. Somehow, scrolling through e-commerce websites and the occasional splurge helped take the mind off the grimness of the outside world. While no one needs to be overtly guilty about this, one can always wonder what if some of this privilege can be used for some possible good. D.O.B has begun to partner with brands who have initiatives to give back to their communities.
Support Streetwear Brands That Support Others
YEMA: Yema is a streetwear brand started by Yema Khalif - a wide-eyed kid from Nairobi, Kenya who made his way to college in the United States through extreme hardships and Hawi Awash - an ethiopian refugee in Minnesota with a love for fashion and a commitment to empower the communities back home. This streetwear inspired brand has a giant giraffe heart as their logo, but even a 2 foot heart would seem miniscule in front of the founders’ compassion. Yema designs stylish clothes that mirror their african roots and the brand gives back 20% of everything you purchase directly to orphaned kids in Ethiopia and Kibera slums in Kenya so they can have greater opportunities
calinY: calinY is a streetwear brand born out of California that has now spread its wings in New York as well. The founders have a simple goal in mind - taking simple authentic tastes and creating a line that will reflect the community around them. While they took their inspiration from the locale, they also pledged to give back to the community and spread a wave of creative goodness for all. Most recently they’re supporting local dance groups.
What is Your Purpose?
D.O.B is founded on the idea of creativity with a purpose. Follow along with us, as we continue to identify and work with streetwear brands who have deep roots originating from art, music and culture, all while giving back to the communities who’ve helped them thrive.