India-made eco undies a rage in UK
Among the hottest items to fly off British shop shelves these days are environment-friendly knickers produced by a women's cooperative in Tamil Nadu.
The idea of the knickers, made of organic cotton, hemp and silk, and available in boxes made of recycled paper, came to Sarah Lucy Smith, 28, who made them for her final project during her eco design course at Goldsmiths, University of London. Later she roped in school friend Rose Cleary-Southwood and together they founded GreenKnickers, which has the Fairtrade Mark — a consumer label which appears on British products as a guarantee that their producers have had a better deal.
"We started GreenKnickers to prove that ethical can be funny, beautiful and sexy," Smith was quoted by Sky News as saying. In an earlier interview to an environment website, she said: "To begin with we worked on our low carbon knickers with a local producer in London... but now we work with a Women's co-op in Tamil Nadu. We became the first underwear brand to receive the Fairtrade Mark for our work with the co-op."
But a high green quotient is not the only reason why the knickers are proving to be such a favourite with buyers. They are also cool and novel, changing their colour as they warm up, because of being printed with thermo-chromic inks. "The fabrics are so gorgeous, and super-duper green. They're selling extremely well. Some customers say they're the comfiest knickers they've ever worn," Smith said.
GreenKnickers, which operates online at the moment, also has a range of cycling smalls and is about to introduce a wedding range. The items do not come cheap, costing up to £25 a pair, plus £3 postage and packaging: however, around four fifths of the wholesale value goes to the suppliers.
But then one has to pay the price if one wants to do ones bit.
Tags: India-made Eco Undies
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