Sustainability Series: Satta, Soulland & Stan Ray
An ever discussed topic nowadays, sustainability has become a key talking point and phrase used by fashion and lifestyle retailers as part of a global movement that is positively raising awareness for the environment. Marking a new era for design, which is full of innovation and creativity within heritage brands and new labels, we’ve begun looking deeper into a selection of the brands we stock who are naturally supporting conscious production whilst also working hard to better their techniques which in turn is undoubtedly inspiring others to follow.
Focusing on the Rastafarian concept of ‘livity’ - which supports the energy between people and all living things for a life spent more connected and in harmony with nature - Satta is run by multidisciplinary designer Joe Lauder. Following his natural passion and appreciation for craftsmanship, an ethos for simplicity, functionality and sustainability has remained during the brands growth and development. Each season sees a capsule range of considered styles with fine tuned details found within every item, whether it’s a screen printed t-shirt, insulated jacket or rolling pouch.
Supporting a slow fashion approach, the use of consciously sourced fabrics and certified organic alternatives are included within each season and are enhanced by a strong sense of consideration over quantity, which contradicts the conventional attitude of apparel production. An ongoing muted colour palette is achieved through selected dye methods that capture a distinctive design personality and encourages longevity with tones that pair easily with others. Enhanced by artwork printed across short sleeved t-shirts which presents themes that tap into the brands connection with nature and life, styles such as the Mikah Fleece Jacket has been designed with a consideration to the seasons by ensuring each piece’s usage is increased through its ability to be layered.
Focusing on abundance through knowledge and experience rather than material objects, each Satta collection is a reflection of Lauder’s considered lifestyle and highlights what he considers to be essential for day to day living. Through his own beliefs and creativity, authenticity is a key detail within each season and there is no doubt that this will continue through small ranges and special capsule collaborations that reflect an international community of like minded creatives.
In a discussion with Highsnobiety in 2018, Soulland co-founder Jacob Jampp Berliner expressed the difficulty of producing sustainable clothing which he explains is much more strenuous logistically for smaller-scale brands in comparison to larger established companies. Not letting this deter their efforts, the duo have worked hard to make small but noticeable steps in the right direction.
Led by Silas Alder and Jacob Jampp Berliner, Soulland was founded in 2002 and draws inspiration from Alder’s upbringing and connection to the native craftsmanship of the brands Scandinavian homeland combined with experimental British design. Introduced for the spring 2019 collection, a switch has been made to GOTS-certified cotton (Global Organic Textile Standard) and there are plans to use recycled polyester for beanies and swimwear as well as new recycled packaging to be introduced later in the year. No strangers to incorporating vibrant print designs within each collection, Soulland has seen an opportunity within manufacture to use leftover fabrics from previous seasons resulting in the Malingo Patchwork Shirt which is one of their first upcycling designs.
In addition to having a large amount of their designs manufactured within Europe, improvements towards a more sustainable practice have been achieved through adapting up to 60% of their collection to use methods that favour water based inks for screen printing and reduce the use of harmful chemicals. Soulland understand that whilst they can’t label themselves as 100% sustainable, by doing what they can they hope to inspire their customers to consider their clothing consumption, whilst also encouraging like minded brands to have the confidence to follow suit.
Looking ahead to the future, Berliner and Alder have presented their goals as part of the Global Fashion Agenda agreement which includes targets of educating their employees within circular design, old garment collection services for customers and increasing the use of recycled textiles.
Noticeably brighter and more vibrant than prior seasons, SS19 from Stan Ray welcomed a more playful approach to the brands staple workwear designs as the first collection to be designed by new lead designer Miles Johnson. Formerly the senior creative director of Patagonia and head designer or Levi Strauss & Co, it’s no surprise that design responsibility and sustainability is Johnson’s leading concern. As a specialist in denim production and someone with an appreciation for the history of design, Johnson proves that style and finish need not be jeopardized when it comes to reducing the use of harmful chemicals in favour of more positive production methods.
Having developed from use solely within workwear into the realms of street styling, Stan Ray’s signature construction methods such as triple stitched seams and bar tacking at key stress points exhibit their focus on strength whilst the versatile, simple cuts and fine tuned details make them suitable for unisex wear. Achieved without the use of substances or processes that are detrimental to the environment, rich colour tones such as burnt orange, yellow and brilliant blue appear within custom patterns designed for brushed flannel shirts as part of AW19. These heritage inspired prints combined with Stan Ray’s focus on construction has resulted in these new season designs destined to become timeless classics. The same can be said for their famous Painter Pants, which have retained their appeal since being introduced during the brands earlier years. As their most popular style, the design has changed very little throughout time which supports a confidence in what they do so well - designing hardwearing, long lasting pieces that act as a sturdy base to ever-changing trends.
With Miles Johnson now at the helm, no doubt more positive changes will be implemented throughout production in support of the brands established reputation for strong, long lasting utilitarian styles.
As part of an ongoing series, keep an eye on the Flatspot blog for further focuses that demonstrate how we can all increase our consciousness and support the brands who are taking considered steps towards the future of sustainable design.