Get to Know us.
The story so far.
Our story has a tragic beginning, a good middle and an unwritten end.
In 2013 a garment factory in Bangladesh called the Rana Plaza collapsed. In this one moment over 1,100 workers were killed. Mothers, fathers, sons and daughters. At the same time our Founder Charlotte was studying at London College of Fashion, learning the ins and outs of clothing from sourcing to merchandising.
This event put everything on hold and through-up some big questions. Why this factory? Who is responsible? How many other factories are on the brink of collapse? Do I really want to be part of this industry?
From Mexico to Peru, Jordan to Tanzania, Bangladesh to Cambodia.
Charlotte went to listen and learn from those at the soul of our high street supply chains. From cotton pickers in fields, to global buyers in boardrooms, their stories revealed a brutal reality. Our most vulnerable communities and precious ecosystems are paying the price for our mass, cheap consumption. Pushing thousands of factories like Rana Plaza to the limit, leaving it powerless to a highly hidden, deep rooted, system of injustice.
So that’s the tragic part. Here’s the beautiful bit.
There was hope. To build a new system. One that elevates fashion, empowers livelihoods, lifts people from poverty, builds communities, feeds, creates, loves, restores. So Charlotte found a skilled cooperative of organic cotton farmers in Hyderabad (India) and partnered with an audited manufacturer in Tirupur. and built a new supply chain, step by step, face to face, from seed to sewn garment. In 2016 she launched a basics line of 50 pieces under a brand name that wrote itself; Know The Origin.
The high street had a few 'green' ideas of their own.
Pouncing on new marketing opportunities within the hot ‘ethical’ and ‘sustainable’ debate. For Charlotte and now a few of us, this confusion fuelled the need to clarify and create a set of ethical standards, and bring together leading brands living up to them.
And so here we are, four years into this wild adventure. We're building Know The Origin to be a home for the richest choice of certified brands. To raise a new standard of sustainability and make ethical the norm for everyone. Forever.
Come write the rest with us.