BRAND: 7 For All Mankind
HOME BASE: Los Angeles, California
FOUNDED BY: Peter Koral. Currently owned by VF Corporation (lifestyle brand that also owns North Face, Vans and Eastpak)
WHY WE COSIGN: Once known primarily as the denim brand that makes your girlfriend's butt look better, 7 For All Mankind has in recent years garnered well-deserved respect for its menswear. The brand should be on your radar for its innovative use of fits, fabrics and finishes. Its newest project is an eco-friendly organic line for the Spring 2009 collection.
WHERE TO FIND IT: 7 For All Mankind retail stores, Barney's New York, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Avenue stores.
Read our interview with 7 For All Mankind's VP of Merchandising & Design, Rosella Giuliani and more pics of the organic denim line below...
Explain why your brand is going "green" and what eco-friendly steps it has taken to achieve that.
We are living in a time where social awareness as a whole is becoming increasingly important, especially to the younger generation. As the leader in premium denim, we feel that it's important to explore alternative options for denim which include organic cottons. The denim used for the select pieces in our Spring 2009 organic line is made with 100% organic cotton, grown from pesticide-free plants.
A cynic might say that the "green" movement, like many things in fashion, is just a passing trend or a trendy buzzword that will soon fade away. What is your response to the cynics, and do you think that the movement will have legs in the future?
There has been so much education on the benefits from our health to our communities in being "green" and supporting "green" measures and consumers will continue to look for different ways to pitch in and designers are creating fashion with this in mind. As responsible individuals, it is our responsibility to take care of our environment and continue to search for new ways that we can contribute to this. This is not a trend, but instead it is becoming more of the norm.
As we've seen with the recent decrease in gas prices (and subsequent increase in fuel consumption), when it comes to "green," it's usually the money that talks, not eco-mindedness. In fashion, organic products tend to be pricier. Why is that? And how do you think it will be possible to make eco-friendly product that is also affordable and accessible to everyday people?
7 For All Mankind uses the finest fabrics, fits and washes each season in order to provide consumers with the best possible product. The Spring 2009 denim ranges in retail price from $169-$225, with $198 being the average price. Clothing made with organic cotton tends to cost more than clothing made with conventional cotton because it is more expensive to harvest and manufacture. While the same manufacturing facilities are used for both types of cotton, extra cleaning and sanitizing precautions need to be taken in order to avoid transferring any chemicals to the organic cotton. This alone increases the processing costs. With that in mind, 7 For All Mankind's organic denim for Spring 2009 ranges in retail price from $198 - $215, which is within the price range of the entire collection, keeping it affordable and accessible for eco-conscious shoppers.
What organic/eco-friendly pieces in your 7 for All Mankind collection are the most popular?
7 For All Mankind is offering Polynesia and Vintage Polynesia for Spring 2009. Polynesia is a 12 oz. rigid denim made from 100% organic cotton. It is stonewashed and made to look like a pair of favorite worn-in jeans. This wash features bright blue hues with all over hand sand blasting, which is complimented by subtle tacking and grinding at the pockets and hems. Polynesia is offered in the Austyn Relaxed Straight Leg, Bootcut and Standard with "A" Pocket. Vintage Polynesia is a washed down, vintage version of Polynesia. Offered on a 12 oz. rigid denim, Vintage Polynesia also uses 100% organic cotton. Extra grinding, holes, sandblasting and antiqued brass hardware complete this vintage look. This wash is offered in the Relaxed with Bordered Squiggle Pocket, which is a very popular style due to the distressed denim trend that has been going on this season.
Any "green" collaborations in the future between your company and other eco-minded companies? How do you plan on staying "green" moving forward?
Going forward we plan to continue offering organic denim throughout our collections, especially since the eco-friendly movement has gone beyond food and fabric to even beauty products. We constantly have our ear to the ground looking for new and innovative techniques. However, we want to do so while also preventing further damage to our natural surroundings. Consumers have a lot of power over manufacturers and they have chosen to make a commitment to buying eco-friendly products. Doing something good for the environment is as easy as buying clothing, giving everyone an opportunity to contribute.