With our first blog, I thought starting point would be to explain more about why Skylos Collective was born and how it marks a change that I truly care about, and consumers everywhere should care about too.
A couple of years ago, I was working for an NGO in sustainable fashion which has United Nations ECOSOC consultative status. Hecho por Nosotros (HxN) (Made by Us in English) is an incredible organisation (and one I’m so proud to have been a part of) is based in Argentina and makes life-changing positive impacts at grass roots level to rural Andean textile producing communities, whilst also working hard to create systems change at UN level.
During my time working remotely for HxN, I gave a webinar on my experiences working in Bolivia at an ethical knit and crochet manufacturer - my time there was spent putting process in place for the organisation to apply for Fairtrade International certification, an accreditation they achieved. A lot of interesting learnings where shared during the webinar, and at the end, Adriana (HxN founder) asked everyone to explain why they collaborate with HxN and what drives them to want to make positive change within the fashion industry.
There was one response which shook the room (and caused quite a few tears – of course me included) and it has driven my passion for pushing for positive system changes and development throughout all textile industries ever since.
A collaborator from a rural Argentinian Andean community, speaking in English, said: “I am here in this virtual meeting, helping to create a better, more fair local textiles economy because Animana (B Corp sister brand to HxN) supported my mum with stable work, decent pay and a safe working place while I was growing up. So, me and my brother went to school, learnt English, ate proper food, had our rent paid and I even went to university. I now want to work to give more local people these opportunities that I had.”
Sharing what shouldn’t be considered opportunities but basic human rights accessible to everyone, this woman will resonate with me always, and she is living proof that doing fashion right can and does create massive and positive impact.
Hence, when a few things came together - identifying a gap in the market, having just completed courses in textiles innovation and needing to buy a birthday gift for Alli our golden retriever - Skylos Collective was born.
Founded with a passion to develop beautiful pet wear in the most sustainable ways possible, we work with innovative vegan leather alternatives, cutting edge transparency software and local and small batch manufacturers. I know by doing all of this and more, in the best ways we can, positive change can and will be made.