I don’t know about you, but every time I go into a fast-fashion store, I feel a slight twinge in my stomach, a moral obligation to put down the cheaply made t-shirt and get out of there as fast as I can. Many people realize what sweatshop labour is and how devastating its rippling affect can be, but many either don’t care too much to stop buying clothes that aren’t ethically made or they simply can’t afford to stop purchasing cheap items. I personally don’t think any of these reasons are good excuses. There’s so many options, even for the tightest of budgets (especially my tight student budget…)
Currently, I’m in the midst of transferring my beauty and makeup products to those that are cruelty-free, organic or vegan. I think taking care of your skin and your physical features are highly important and most importantly a healthy and harmonious decision. I also think the same should go for what you decide to wear and showoff on your body. Maintaining your self-expression is so important! I have a personal philosophy that clothes should be comfortable, well-made and an outwardly expression of your own style and personality. Finding pieces that fit this criteria and that are ethically made, sweatshop-free or sustainably sourced isn’t as hard to find as you may think.
This is where I talk about Trava . Stemming from a love for Sri Lanka and ethical clothing, DeAsia and business partner Harmonie have created a line of sustainable and original pieces that give back to the artisans and community within the villages of Sri Lanka. The two lived on the island of Sri Lanka, working in the tourism and fashion sectors as interns, witnessing poverty first hand, and deciding to follow their passions of business and social justice. It’s imperative to recognize an initiative that donates their time to personally see that the profits of their clothing gets developed into community outreach. Instead of just donating money and calling it a day, Trava seeks to hire artisans within small villages in Sri Lanka where women and children do not attain the same equality or opportunity as men do. By providing jobs, not only is Trava helping educate and promote a sustainable and positive economic outreach, they are also promoting equality among genders. In fact, Trava is also in the process of becoming B-corp certified, meaning the company is held legally accountable for having the utmost highest standards of social and environmental progress and public transparency.
Not only is Trava ethically and socially conscious, their clothes boasts bright colours and patterns, loose flowy tanks, cropped tops, flare pants, skirts, two-piece outfits, jewelry and more. All of these pieces were designed in Canada and made in Sri Lanka.
Trava’s pricing ranges from $98 CAD for a full outfit set of curated pieces designed to compliment the other; a wide selection of separates from caged tanks and cropped tops to high waisted shorts averaging $40-$55 CAD; and Mata Traders jewelry, handcrafted in India by local village artisans for a price of $30.
I was lucky enough to be a blogger with Trava for the Toronto Urban Collective Summer Sixteen Pop Up market. In conjunction with this event, it was great being witness to over 100 vendors who were so passionate about their art and product. I found from looking through all the booths, especially those in the fashion sector, Trava stood out to me. The trends right now all point towards minimalist pieces featuring muted tones or simple designs, minimal and plain jewelry. However, with Trava, the pieces showcased themselves by being bold, inspiring, and showing off the fabrics purchased in those Sri Lankan village markets. The pieces in Trava’s current collection can also be paired with a simple, minimalist wardrobe to add some flair.
Shop smart, buy local, buy fair-trade, buy organic, buy ethically. It’s simple: if you want to be a part of a movement of people seeking to empower others’ lives and change the world, step outside of the box; be a conscious consumer.
+Disclaimer: I was invited by Trava to the Toronto Urban Collective Pop Up to be a brand reviewer. Although I was contacted for this purpose, all reviews are 100% honest and my own.