In the ever-evolving fashion world, South Australian label, From Found, is leading the movement in sustainable and ethical fashion, with a vision to change the mainstream industry.
From Found Creative Director, Hannah Materne is on a mission; to bring creative, ethical and sustainable clothing to the mainstream fashion market.
“We want to make people aware of the issues they can be buying into with fast fashion, and know that clothing can still encompass quality and style whilst remaining ethical and sustainable,” says Hannah.
Hannah and her team do this by having each From Found piece crafted by women from refugee and asylum seeker backgrounds, using ‘found’ fabrics including reclaimed, recycled and recovered textiles.
“Sourcing fabrics found is a labour of love”, says Hannah.
“We seek remnants from projects never completed, bolts of fabrics leftover from collections and old or damaged clothing that is made of good quality fabric.
“There is and never will be just one source for our fabrics but there are plenty of existing textiles in the world to create beautiful high quality pieces.”
This labour of love is also combined with a vision to see refugee and asylum seeker women empowered with the skills and training to enable them to transition into the mainstream workforce.
Hannah’s Business Partner, Lauren, worked in community development and saw the challenges women in particular faced with entering the workforce.
“She recognised the possibility of combining the women’s strengths in sewing and creativity with the opportunity to build up transferable skills and experiences for further work or study,” says Hannah.
“Currently, women from refugee backgrounds are involved both as machinists sewing our creations, and also on the From Found board making strategic decisions.”
“We also have volunteer opportunities in our workshop where women can join our nurturing environment, practice and learn English, and have fun with other women!”
The label has big goals for the future, hoping to be a go-to brand for consumers looking for ethical clothing that loves both the environment and the people making the pieces.
“We would also love to have a combined retail store and workshop one day,” says Hannah.
“We see this as an opportunity to not only give our customers the chance to enjoy selecting their one-off piece whilst visiting our workshop, but also to provide more employment options for women from refugee backgrounds.”