06/24

The story behind our materials

Exceptional blank garments start with exceptional materials. By working exclusively with fabrics made from organic and recycled materials, we minimise our impact on the planet – while never compromising on quality, comfort or functionality.

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The story behind our materials

Our goal has always been to offer exceptional blank garments while, at the same time, build a transparent and sustainable fashion ecosystem. At the heart of that objective are the materials we use to create each and every product.

Explore how our material choices – from organic and recycled cotton to recycled polyester and recycled nylon – reflect our commitment to a more sustainable fashion industry, and a better future for our planet and its people. 

Organic cotton, the only choice 

Since our origins in 2012, Stanley/Stella has committed to using only 100% organic cotton – in fact, we’re now one of the largest purchasers of organic cotton worldwide.* 

Organic cotton is grown from non-genetically modified seeds and cultivated without the use of chemical pesticides and fertilisers. This type of farming uses nature-based solutions to manage pests and improve soil health, and any water used can safely return to rivers, lakes and seas without risk of pollution. It’s an approach that’s better for the environment and better for local communities.

Initially, we sourced all our organic cotton from India, but since 2021, we have diversified our supply chain to include countries such as Turkey.

GOTS certification … and beyond

All the organic cotton we use is certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) – the leading worldwide standard for organic fibres. This certification covers both environmental and social criteria, and guarantees the traceability and organic content of our products from the raw material to the final garment.

But we don’t stop there. As well as our GOTS certification, we also take other steps to get to know our supply chain and be fully confident in the organic integrity of our cotton. For example, we carry out regular on-site visits to cotton farmers and ginners, to periodic random testing of our yarn and lint cotton, we take our commitment to responsible and sustainable sourcing extremely seriously.

* Source: Textile Exchange’s Material Change Index (MCI) 2023

Recycled cotton 

It’s hard to avoid production waste in our industry – but waste is only waste if you don’t find a way to reuse it. We began using recycled cotton in 2017 for our accessories, and have since expanded its use to include garments like the RE-Creator t-shirt and RE-Cruiser hoodie. These products are made with 50% recycled organic cotton, sourced from our own cutting waste, and 50% undyed virgin organic cotton.

Global Recycled Standard

The cutting waste is collected from our partner factories, shredded in a spinning mill, and blended with virgin organic cotton to create a high-quality yarn. The yarn is then knitted into a durable fabric, ready to be made into garments.

Our Recycled range and production facilities are certified by the Global Recycled Standard (GRS).

Recycled polyester  

Recycled polyester is another key material in our sustainability strategy. In 2018, we made the switch to using only recycled polyester, made from post-consumer PET bottles. Not only does turning these plastic bottles into yarn keep them out of landfills and the ocean, but manufacturing recycled polyester reduces demand for petroleum as a raw material, and uses less energy compared to virgin polyester.

Like with our organic cotton, we ensure full traceability of our recycled polyester, including the origin of the PET bottles, which are mainly sourced from China. 

After collection, the PET bottles are cleaned and cut into small flakes. These flakes are melted into chips and blown into fibre, then woven into yarn to create a durable and breathable fabric. All recycled polyester fabrics used in Stanley/Stella outerwear garments are GRS certified.

Recycled nylon 

For some of our accessories and outerwear products, we use recycled nylon from pre-consumer industrial fibre waste. Transforming nylon waste into yarn brings all the same environmental benefits as recycling polyester: keeping waste out of nature, reducing dependency on petroleum, and creating a material with a lower environmental footprint.

Recycled nylon is durable and strong, while still being lightweight. It has similar characteristics to recycled polyester but is even softer on the skin.

Like our recycled cotton and recycled polyester fabrics, all recycled nylon fabrics used in Stanley/Stella outerwear garments and accessories are GRS certified.

We are our choices

At Stanley/Stella, our material choices reflect our dedication to sustainability, excellence, innovation, and people. Whether it’s organic cotton, recycled cotton, recycled polyester, or recycled nylon, each material is selected with care to balance comfort and performance, as well as environmental and social impact. 

By continuously improving our sourcing practices and expanding our use of sustainable materials, we strive to lead the way in responsible fashion. Explore our collection and join us in making a positive impact on the planet, one garment at a time.