SchoolofLifeProjects uses yarns for their collection which can be traced back any time. For our Poncho's we use regional yarn coming out of the Portugese region Beira e Serra da Estrela which is a rural region where you find lots of sheep herds. These sheep herds are maintaining the National park so that the landscape remains open and all original vegetation gets the chance to bloom. Twice per year the sheep give their wool during Wool focused festivities; there are many beautiful old procedures which underline the importance of the herds, the mountains and the people involved. A beautiful, but also vulnerable balance, these days mostly endangered because of climate change. The wool goes to local factories which will select and clean the wool, and send it out for dying, again all in the local environment. When the wool comes back it gets spun and tested for new fabric and patterns to be started on 150 year old weaving machines.
We fully support the local factories as we believe that this traditional craft is delivering the best product (self cleaning, warm, supple yarns and fabrics, and last but not least very beautiful). There is proof to be found that the basis for these weaving methods has been existing in this region for more than 600 years. As the factory and the wool are fully certified also the SchoolofLifeProjects product is also entitled for this. We have recently started the enrollment of GOTS certification (Global Organic Textile Standard) which will take us a while, due to the procedures one has to undertake.
Next to the Portugese wool SchoolofLifeProjects uses yarn which is bought at Pinori Filati, an Italian supplier. Pinori has created an Italian yarn collection based on recycled fibers. SchoolofLife uses two fibers for its knitwear;
RECY wool; a mix of fibers from recycled industrial waste yarn, consumer waste yarn and recycled fiber made out of plastic bottles. If you read this it sounds pretty grim, and hence it is very difficult to believe that all these ingredients make such a beautiful and warm wool based yarn which keeps you warm and beautiful..
RECY tape comes from the same origin as the the RECY wool, but is cotton based which creates an excellent product for end users who can't wear wool.
Pinori is very open about the production of their yarns and all their certificates of compliance are to be found on their website (pinori.it). SchoolofLifeProjects product made in this yarn is carrying hangtags explaining end users all about the yarn and its origin.
Our organic cotton yarns are selected by our manufacturer of t shirts and sweatshirts and tick all boxes with regards to origin and compliance. The yarns which we use for our sweatshirts and t shirts are extremely soft by nature and also because of the treatment (brushing). In the factory itself the production happens taking highest standards into consideration with regards to electricity and water usage. Also we would like to underline again that with the production of only one organic cotton T shirt vs. a conventional (read 'normal' cotton) 2,500 liters of water are being saved and also based on only 1 t shirt half a cup of pesticides is being saved (read not used..) This is why organic and recycled materials are so important; With the global population growing the way it grows we need all clean water for drinking and we need no pesticides in our foodchain..
Basically there are two opportunities moving forward; you re-use (buy 2nd hand), or use recycled or organic product. All conventional produced product will continue to have a negative impact on planet and people immediately. Being a fan of the late Anita Roddick, founder of Bodyshop, we would like to leave you with a quote which inspires us every day;
'The business of business should not just be about money. It should be about responsibility. it should be about public good not private greed'..