You’d never guess these sustainable fashion brands in Los Angeles make new clothes and accessories from recycled materials.
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For most fashion brands, garments have a short lifespan. They’re produced from raw materials. Sent out to consumers. After a few years of use, they’re discarded. Even garments that find their way onto racks at consignment and thrift shops still tend to get thrown out eventually. As of 2019, 85% of all textiles go to the dump each year. This is all part of a linear production model in which waste is inevitable. While this is the traditional model for fashion production, a few sustainable fashion brands in Los Angeles (and elsewhere around the world) are proving that it doesn’t have to be the standard.
For years now sustainably-minded fashion brands have found new ways to make clothes that focus on disrupting the linear production model. Some brands make garments from leftover and discarded fabrics from factories known as deadstock. Other upcycled (repurposed) fabrics are usually used outside of fashion, like the fabric used to make seatbelts or airbags. Some brands even innovate new textiles from plastic bottles that would otherwise take up space in landfills or wind up in oceans. In addition to these processes, some brands even use returns or exchanges as opportunities to put old garments back into their production line in a closed-loop production style. This not only eliminates the need for raw materials but prevents their garments from ending up as waste.
So where does this innovation happen? A great deal of it takes place in factories and studios in Los Angeles, California. The Golden State is leading the movement of all styles of recycled, upcycled, and deadstock fashion. If you’re looking to try out the new trend, you can read on to check out 12 of our favorite sustainable fashion brands in Los Angeles that turn trash into treasure.
Girlfriend Collective makes bras, leggings, and other activewear pieces from blends of plastic bottles, nets, recycled fabrics, and spandex. Two of their signatures are their Compressive High-Rise leggings and matching Paloma Bra, which are made from a blend of recycled polyester and spandex.
For Days makes basics like tees, hoodies, and hats that you can use to build a sustainable wardrobe from the bottom up. If you ever get tired of one of your For Days pieces, you can trade it in through their SWAP program to get a discount on something new. Then, your old clothes get transformed into textiles in a waterless recycling process and put back into the production line, where they end up as items like this classic Men’s Relaxed Crew tee.
Christy Dawn believes in honoring nature by sourcing their own organic cotton with regenerative agriculture practices, as well as sourcing deadstock. Christy Dawn’s style is casual, clean, and simple. The dress that started the Christy Dawn brand, the Dawn Dress, exemplifies this aesthetic.
Gracemade is redefining modest clothing as a form of self-expression, not restriction. And, as a faith-based company, they believe in using only sustainable and ethical practices. That’s why they source deadstock and natural fibers locally and produce garments in small batches in ethical Los Angeles factories. Their Gratia jumpsuit perfectly encapsulates their modern sustainable take on modest clothing.
For Love Faustine, slow fashion is everything. They make small limited batches of upcycled clothing with textiles ranging from deadstock to vintage garments. They then transform these textiles into loungewear and resort wear pieces that read as elegant and effortless. Check out their Relove Collection and see for yourself.
Having trouble finding a good sustainable bag? Look no further than HFS Collective. Their bags and wallets are made from recycled plastics, upcycled materials, deadstock fabrics, and low-impact materials like cork, pineapple leather, organic cotton, and hemp. Their signature Bottle Bag features Pinatex (pineapple leather), their recycled bottle eco-suede, and organic cotton and can hold a bottle of wine or a 25oz Swell bottle.
Rewilder takes waste that usually goes to landfills, like beer clothes, airbags, and car covers to create bags, wallets, jackets, and even dog leashes. If you wear out any of your Rewilder pieces, you can send them in to get mended or put back into their closed-loop production line. And if you’re in need of a tote that’ll stand up our beach days and grocery trips, try out their Market/Beach Bag.
Where does leather go when it gets thrown out? For Hyer Goods, it goes right onto the production line. While leather is an imperfect material for a variety of reasons, it is long-lasting, making it a great deadstock textile. So instead of letting old leather go to waste, Hyer Goods gives it new life in the form of wallets and bags. And don’t worry, they don’t produce any new leather; deadstock works perfectly for them. Take a look at Hyer Good’s range of upcycled leather, angora, and cashmere products and you’ll see why.