In an effort to build a community of environmentally conscious citizens we’ve created Community Leeks as a platform for people to share thoughts, stories, recipes and resources.
Today’s Community Leeks entry is our first interview. We wanted to examine the concept, ethos and vision of a local children’s clothing company, luvmother. Kevin, the founder and designer behind this brand, shares with us his perspective and insight on the clothing industry and how he came to offer a more sustainable, ethically-sourced product. Thank you Kevin for taking the time to share. It became clear to us that the integrity, honesty and respect that serve as the foundation of luvmother are indeed a reflection of your character.
1. Why the name luvmother?
We wanted a name to represent more than just the collections we put out, something that truly defined the spirit, integrity and intention behind the brand. The two words ‘love’ and ‘mother’ are packed with positive meaning and we tip our hats to all moms, mother earth, the mother of invention and the idea that with a little luv anything you put your mind to is possible.
2. What is the ethos of your business?
Keep it simple, transparent, source materials responsibly, partner with honest people, make practical pieces that stand the test of time and do whatever we can to minimize our environmental footprint even if it effects the bottom line.
In a nutshell, “No muss, no fuss and very matter of fact”. (we use that line as a sign off on several of our communication pieces. Likewise, our brand tagline is “Sourced in Earnest / Made in… We fill in the blanks on that last bit depending on where a particular collection is made)
3. What were some of the drivers behind starting your clothing company?
My wife Giselle and I are both active, outdoor enthusiasts and true believers in natural fabrics and the awesome technical benefits of merino wool. When we had our twins six years ago we had a hard time finding quality merino pieces for them. What we did find was expensive and not particularly interesting.
My background is graphic design and art direction and I have spent the better part of my career working in the outdoor sports industry. As a result we had contacts from the product design side and with their help set about putting a test collection together. The more people we showed the better the reception was and we knew that our idea had legs. In early 2014 we took the designs from concept to production and have been building up steam ever since.
4. Many people question the raising and shearing of sheep from an ethical standpoint, as it could be seen as exploitative. How do you account for this aspect of your business?
Wool is a natural and renewable fibre with amazing technical qualities. We source ours from ethically run stations in Australia and New Zealand. These sheep farmers certify that their flocks are humanely treated, raised on plentiful tracts and are never subject to mulesing.
5. What makes buying your clothes a sound choice for people wanting to be environmentally and ethically responsible citizens?
The world certainly already has enough ‘stuff’, we do, however, need to be clothed. In the spirit of being responsible citizens and minimizing compromise we make a product that takes people, animals and the environment into consideration.
There are a lot of steps involved from ‘sheep to shirt’ and we work with partners that share our ethical point of view and manage their part of the process with care and integrity. Whether that be recycling of waste water, avoiding harsh chemicals during fabric creation or offsetting carbon emissions as a result of transportation.
In the spirit of transparency, we keep an open door policy and offer that information up to our customers upon request.
6. How and where can people access your clothing line?
To date we have been available primarily on our website, as a direct to consumer operation. We do partner with a few select retailers in the US and Canada and have benefited from their expertise and network of trusted customers. This coming Fall will be growing that retail base and will start to pop up in more specialty retail locations across North America and Europe. luvmother.com remains the hub and anyone looking for our fine threads should start their search there or drop us a line to firstname.lastname@example.org and we would be happy to point them in the right direction.
7. What’s your long term vision for the Luvmother brand?
We are onto something and do not feel limited whatsoever by geography. The goal has never been to clothe a child from head to toe but rather compliment their existing wardrobe with practical, quality pieces that serve a purpose, stand the test of time and allow kids to keep on keeping on. We will keep working to improve our core ‘classics’ collection and plan add to that sparingly as new needs and ideas come up.
About the Author:
Kevin is a dedicated family man who devotes his spare time to his beautiful wife and twin girls. He is born and raised in Montreal, and is trained as an art director and graphic designer. Kevin shares his passion for the outdoors with his family as they enjoy the many activities the seasons bring. He has used his passion and skill-set to create luvmother, a children’s clothing line with a strong ethical and environmental foundation.