We know that we will never be a fully sustainable brand — we produce clothes, use natural resources and rely on our customers to buy our products. But we believe that we can make better choices and are committed to making a change from within. In 2021, seven years after our brand was founded, we are making a commitment to make better, more responsible choices across the business to minimise our environmental and social impact.
We know that we will make mistakes on our way. But we want to tell you about them, sharing our ups and downs — we hope that by doing that, we can help other companies to be better, in our industry and beyond. Transparency and honesty have been at the heart of 12 STOREEZ since the very beginning. We want to tell you what changes we are making, to start a conversation and to make it easier for you to make them too. When it comes to sustainability, there is no competition — we are all in this together.
By 2030, we want to be carbon neutral. We want to analyse our supply chain and work exclusively with partners that support sustainable practices. We want to ensure that 60% of the fabrics we use are environmentally-conscious — organic and recycled.
Our step zero is to understand where we are now:
We do not know exactly how far from our goals we are at the moment, and which steps will prove to be most effective. We also know that to achieve this, we need a dedicated team eager to make changes. At the moment, we are building a sustainability team that will lead this change and implement it across the business.
The transparency of the supply chain is the gray zone of our industry. It is important to know who produces your clothes and whether these people are treated well — from fair wages to good labour conditions. It is no longer just a shirt you buy; it is the people who created it that matter.
We work with factories in Russia, Belarus, Turkey, China and India. Most of our partners in APAC work in compliance with global standards (WRAP, Sedex, BSCI), assuring safe, legal and ethical manufacturing processes as well as sustainable production practices.
Before committing to a new partner, we visit the factories and check their certification, yet we understand that cannot count as a full audit of their practices. We know we haven’t nailed that yet — and in the future, we will have a role dedicated to an ongoing audit of our partners. This will be one of the first hires within the sustainability team. We will keep you updated on the progress; we know this process will be slow, but believe this effort is necessary and important.
We sometimes get criticised because the most anticipated styles get sold out quickly. Our strategy is to create curated capsules and produce only the necessary stock (or even less than that). We only restock certain products that are in very high demand, and only in limited quantities. This allows us to reduce overproduction and decrease unsold stock, which continues to be a big issue across the industry.
We believe that clothes should work for you time and time again, and create styles that can be easily matched — giving you a small, but highly functional wardrobe. We are very rational when it comes to design, and don’t want you to buy clothes you may wear once (or never). Even when we are sketching, we ask ourselves: does this work with the rest of our clothes? How functional is it? Will someone want to wear this in a year or two? If we don’t like the answer, we go back to the drawing board. It’s better to do less but better.
Fabrics and textiles
By 2030, we want 60% of our materials to be environmentally-conscious — organic, produced adhering to globally recognised certification, recyclable and recycled. At the moment, we are far from this goal, but we are walking in the right direction. In April 2021, we launched our first organic cotton capsule. In 2022, the entire denim capsule will be produced from BCI cotton (Better Cotton Initiative).
In April 2021, we created a R&D department that will research and source sustainable alternatives to our fabrics, including lab-grown and recycled textiles, as well as be responsible for testing these in a laboratory to ensure durability and longevity of our products.
We are working on reducing overall packaging, as well as sourcing recyclable materials for the packaging we do use. Our boxes are made from recycled cardboard certified by FSC – an international non-profit organisation that promotes responsible management of the world’s forest. The label provides assurances that all the wood or paper in a product has been verified as genuinely recycled.
Starting in May 2021, we will recycle all materials that come to our warehouses — cardboard boxes and stretch film — about 20 shipping containers of packaging a month.
About plastic. We ship your order wrapped in plastic to ensure it doesn’t get damaged on its way. In 2020, we switched to biodegradable plastic, but realised that it wasn’t a solution either — biodegradables mostly break down into microplastics, still negatively impacting the environment. In 2021, we are switching to type 4 plastic packaging (LDPE), which can be recycled and reused.
This summer, we are planning to halve the amount of plastic in every order by stripping the outer layer of plastic packaging. Your orders would be delivered in its recycled cardboard boxes. We will keep you updated on our next steps and packaging initiatives.