5 Questions To Ask Yourself Before You Shop
1. Who Made This?
Who made my clothes is a question pushed to the forefront by Fashion Revolution. This holds a lot of power. Knowing who made your clothes is predicated on a brand having close connections with their factories and a closely monitored supply chain. There should be no hidden faces within the fashion industry.
At NAFSI, the team works with a variety of suppliers & tailors around the world to put together the pieces you see today. Whenever possible, the garments are made locally. When sold from the UAE offices, the pieces are made in Dubai. When sold form the Canadian offices, the pieces are made in Ontario.
NAFSI's Supplier Code of Conduct is an agreement with all primary and secondary suppliers. It ensures all are working under the highest social and environmental standards. The code is built on conventions from the International Labour Organization and industry best practice.
View NAFSI's Supplier Code of Conduct
2. Is This a Fair Price?
The price of a garment represents a multiplicity of processes, from growing the cotton and stitching the seams to sending it to you. Fair trade practices means workers are paid according to healthy living standards. Organic practices means slower turn around time from crop to garment. Such factors add to the price of the final product. If you notice products are highly priced, ask yourself; is it justified? Is it fair?
3. What Fabrics Are Used?
Not all fabrics are created equal so consider the inseam tag just as important as the price tag. What is the fabric content? Is it oil-thirsty polyester or a natural fibre? Cotton is an obvious, plant-based option but the industry harbours some murky practices. Look for Fairtrade and Organic certifications as an indicator of fair practices and a dedication to responsible water treatment and monitoring chemical usage. Other stand-outs include hemp, ECONYL and Tencel.
As much as possible, NAFSI tries to make the most of resources that already exist. This means hunting for fabrics that would otherwise end up in the landfills, working closely with our upcycling partners.
NAFSI sources a lot of upcycled materials. In Canada, NAFSI works with EcoEquitable, whose main goal is to transform lives, situations, environments, perspectives, materials, and the world. 100% of the proceeds from the deadstock fabric supports the community of women that make up the team. Read more about the partnership here.
In the UAE, NAFSI works with Thrift for Good. Thrift for Good is a second hand social enterprise that exists to do good. They work to send 100% of profits to Gulf for Good, supporting underprivileged children around the world.
NAFSI only sources new fibers if they are certified by the Global Organic Textile Standards. This includes organic cotton, organic linen and recycled water bottles.
The fabric details are always clearly stated next to NAFSI's products on the website.
4. Is This Brand Transparent?
Take a look through your favourite brand’s website. How open are they about their practices? Do they specify where their clothes are made? Do they talk about their supply chain? If you’re not content with the information on their website, ask them directly. Ask them about their fabrics, working conditions, prices and environmental impact. If they don’t or won’t answer, it’s probably a cue to look elsewhere.
If the information provided isn't enough, please reach out to NAFSI's founder directly. Celine Hajjar takes pride in transparency and would be happy to answer any questions you might have. You can reach her through e-mail at email@example.com
5. Is this piece timeless?
Whether it’s in terms of quality or trend, longevity is the key to a consciously curated wardrobe. Look at the seams, check the fabric and consider every new piece within the context of your life. If it’s made to last and you can envisage wearing it past the end of the current season and far beyond, that’s your green light.
NAFSI does not follow trends or seasons. Instead, NAFSI focuses on timeless collections— with the hopes of you wearing the pieces always & forever.