While shopping for clothing, every consumer faces an unconscious choice between fashion and ethics. Often the styles we love disregard sustainability, fairtrade labor, and ethical sourcing in favor of quick, easy, and affordable. That’s why at Indigenous, we like to make it easy! Our goal is to make the decision between ethics and uniquely chic styles unnecessary. We’re committed to supporting other small businesses, fairtrade labor, and making choices that positively impact the planet! One of the ways we assure that our values are reflected in our clothing is by partnering up with small artisans who prioritize moral and sustainable standards throughout their entire design process. Our partnership with Kero designs is crucial in our ability to stock styles that our shoppers can feel morally good about.
Who is Kero Design?
Kero Design is a family-owned company in Peru with over 20 years of designing and manufacturing high-quality, fully-fashioned knitted garments. Each of their designs is made with fine natural fibers native to the Peruvian landscape, like alpaca and Pima cotton. Led by Mariella Gonzales, Kero Designs uses in-house developed materials and hand-dyed colors inspired by Peruvian artisan techniques, making each piece of handmade clothing one-of-the-kind and exclusive. We’re proud to say we’ve been partnering with these incredible artisans for over a decade!
Kero is Fairtrade Certified
One of the reasons we feel confident choosing Kero Design as a partner is their commitment to ethical, fairtrade labor. They’ve put extensive work into getting their Peru Fair Trade certification, ensuring that all ecological and social standards are continually being met, including safe working conditions, environmental protection, and sustainable livelihoods. Their efforts toward ethical fashion ensure that their Peruvian community benefits as a whole through job creation and an influx of liveable wages.
To make the cheapest, quickest clothing possible, the typical fast fashion brand provides unliveable incomes and little regard for the safety of their laborers. It’s an uncomfortable but indisputable fact that most people own apparel that is the direct result of a laborer's mistreatment. Choosing certified fairtrade clothing, like all our Indigenous designs, is the only way to ensure that the fashion you love doesn’t negatively affect the maker’s life.
What makes their process sustainable?
Our partners at Kero do everything in their power to produce the most sustainable clothing possible. Their commitment to eco-friendly choices starts with their fabrics. These artisans create natural fiber clothing using high-quality, locally sourced materials like organic cotton and free-range alpaca fleece. Not only do these natural fibers provide support for regional farmers, but they're made to retain their quality, ensuring that each style won’t end up in a landfill after one season of wear.
Beyond the fabrics, Kero Design commits to making every piece either by hand or with a non-electric artisan knitting machine. This extended and intricate process limits overproduction and saves on valuable energy sources. Partnering with these small artisans is the sole reason we can have an environmental impact report to be proud of.
Every year, with the help of Kero Design, Indigenous Designs is able to:
- Save 13 million gallons of water
- Save 45,600 lbs of carbon dioxide
- Keep 400 lbs of pesticides off the land
Our Kero Design favorites
From Alpaca sweaters to ombre knits, the artisans at Kero have a flair for the unique, flattering, and utterly fashionable. With her expertise in pattern and colors, head designer Mariella combines international influences, trend-making innovation, and fashion consciousness with Peruvian tradition. Every Kero piece affirms that sustainable fashion doesn’t have to compromise on chic, effortless style.
Sweaters to Love
Why is sustainable, ethical fashion important?
Apart from the obvious reasons, over-consumption has surpassed population as one of our most significant ecological threats. Society has entered into a dangerous cycle of setting low prices to encourage consumers to run through clothing quicker, resulting in manufacturers decreasing their quality and thus the longevity of their clothes. The number of garments bought and sold each year has more than doubled in the past 15 years. This neverending rush for new purchases means extra pressure on factory workers to produce more pieces, at a quicker pace, for the same low wage. As it stands, Fashion is a peril to both people and the planet. Choosing ethically made apparel is the only way to have a say in who and what your style choices affect.