Designing for today and tomorrow
Archetype is based on a mindset of learning and openness. From the first design draft to manufacturing, we want to be mindful of the natural resources we use and to cherish what surrounds us.
At best, our garments can become life partners for their users. From our side this requires designing timeless and functional silhouettes and selecting quality materials.
Our maxim is "wear, care and repair". This means we design and produce garments which can be worn over a long period of time, our customers can care for those garments and repair them when necessary. At the very end the materials can be recycled.
We make sure our garments have appropriate wash labels and our Garment care -hang tags provide more instructions where necessary. As washing is a contributing factor to the pollution of the garment industry, we try to encourage our customers not to overwash garments and to find alternative ways to refresh textiles.
It is worthwhile to note that the longer the product stays in use, the lower its relative environmental footprint becomes. Additionally, the longer the product stays in use, the more likely it is to offset production of a new textile product. Therefore care contributes in reducing the environmental impacts of both the industry and the product.
Sourcing natural materials
At Archetype our goal is to source and select natural materials. This means avoiding synthetic, petroleum based fibers and materials which contain microplastics which spread in the environment with wash and use.
Not only are natural fibers breathable and feel wonderful to wear, but unlike synthetics these are biodegradable and not based on non-renewable, petrochemical manufacturing.
At Archetype, we invest a lot of effort into details you might not see, but which make a difference in the long run. For example, our buttons are made from either biodegradable resin or if not available, then recycled plastic. Our shirts have cotton buckram on the collars and cuffs, when the industry standard is to use polyester backing.
Although these details may seem small, we believe that if adopted at large scale these small steps amount to having an industry-wide impact.
Manufacturing partners we can trust
We look for longterm partners we can build a relationship with. This means not competing for the cheapest option on the market, but paying fairly for both the materials and labour.
Archetype clothing is cut and sewn in our partner factory in Estonia. We have visited the sewing company many times, and we know their work practices thoroughly. It is our goal in future to audit all the new manufacturing partners in person.
We are mainly sourcing our materials from European manufacturers, as they are regulated by EU environmental and labour laws. Our linen comes from Lithuania, wool comes from Germany, cotton poplin and corduroy comes from Czech Republic.
Working with partners close by helps us to avoid overstocking materials and excessive, polluting material shipments. Our fabrics are oeko-tex certified, which is a worldwide certification system for environmentally friendly and socially responsible production facilities in the textile and clothing industry.
Plastic free packing
Since we are focused on plastic free production, it would be hardly meaningful if our garments would be packed into plastic when shipped from the factory to us and from us to your home.
Our garments are individually wrapped with cotton ribbon and bulk packaged to reusable plastic packaging when shipped to us from manufacturer. This plastic is either reused by us or shipped back to the factory to reuse for a new shipment.
Archetype online orders are packed plastic free with silk paper, carton boxes and ecological tape. With importance of online sales increasing, in future we hope to offer an option to offset the carbon emissions of shipping.
Our sustainability goals
Archetype was launched only in 2020, and as we grow we hope to do more. As more materials come available to us, we hope to further reduce the use of plastic and virgin materials in our production.
In future we want to design limited collections from overstock materials left unused by other fashion companies. The goal is to tackle the overproduction in the textile industry, and to use existing materials instead of creating new ones.
With alarming news from Xinjiang, we have been extremely concerned about the traceability of cotton. Although our cotton fabrics are spin, woven and dyed in Europe, it has not been possible for us to trace the origin of the raw materials. We hope there will be industry-wide measures, and for future collections we hope there is a possibility for us to purchase certified cotton.
We get excited about new ecological material innovations, artisanal small scale productions and production with a measurable social impact. These are just some of the opportunities we look forwards to working with in future.