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MATCHESFASHION launches Responsible Edit to drive positive change

Lauretta Roberts
05 March 2020

MATCHESFASHION has unveiled a new on-site hub, called Responsible Edit to make it easy for customers to discover brands sharing their commitment to responsible and ethical practices.

The luxury retailer has partnered with sustainable consultancy Eco-Age to create the guidelines for inclusion in the Responsible Edit, which were built around four shoppable pillars: charity, people, artisans and materials.

Each brand has worked with MATCHESFASHION to meet the stringent responsible requirements for the edit - not only by completing the Responsible Survey but also complied with all legal legislation regarding sustainability and ethical practices.

The pillars are explained as follows:

  • ARTISANS – brands who champion artisanal manufacturing processes or are engaged in long-term partnerships with organisations such as NEST. More than 50% of a brand’s production team must be made up of artisans and craftspeople for all or specific collections.
  • CHARITY – brands maintaining long-term partnerships with social enterprises, charities or non-profit organisations, or have created their own long-term community enhancement programmes of charities.
  • PEOPLE – brands who promote fair work environments, commitment to fair trade practices or ensure certified living wages are paid. Considering brands that include groups that are vulnerable to abuse of human rights throughout their production processes.
  • MATERIALS – products containing more than 50% lower impact material content, including responsibly sourced recycled or vintage fabrics and plant-based leather alternatives or organic or natural dyes.

Jess Christie Chief Brand Officer at MATCHESFASHION explained: ‘‘Our responsibility is to enable our customers to shop fashion, which they love, in a more considered way. Nearly 70% of our customers say that they try to live their lives as sustainably as possible - a response that is impossible to ignore.

"If you think about this in terms of our brand’s responsibility – to our customers, brands and employees – you can start to make incremental changes.’

The Responsible Edit was born out of MATCHESFASHION’s continued focus on the implementation and growth of its internal Responsible Survey project. Culminating in over two years of work with its partner Eco-Age, the survey was built with the intention of educating, inspiring and collaborating with brand partners in order to create positive change and maximum transparency for a more responsible fashion industry.

Designer Priya Ahluwalia, who features in the Responsible Edit, said: "To find my materials I use a different number of sources. As the business has grown, mills want to partner with me, for example, my denim from last season was sponsored, and that mill worked with me to give me their deadstock and a lot of recycled styles. Alternatively, I have a big network of vintage and deadstock material suppliers.’"

Designer Caroline Smithson from SSONE added: ‘‘So, what I wanted to do was create an environment where it was a very humanitarian company. We work face to face with all our manufacturers, we know where things are being made, we know our artisans and we try and connect that community together to build something that you will purchase in a considered way. It’s actually something where you’re considering the longevity and making a more educated choice."

In addition to the Responsible Edit, the company has also introduced: 

  • Fully recyclable signature marble packaging – 100% plastic free and made from materials which are responsibly sourced, using natural vegetable dyes for the marble pattern. The retailer has also worked closely with suppliers to develop an innovation allowing magnets to be easily removed for recycling. 
  • Recyclable materials - all parcel envelopes, packing notes, return and swing tags are all made from FSC certified materials and can be recycled, with stickers and tissue paper made with recycled content. New half-height boxes reduce the material required wherever possible.
  • 5 Carlos Place – during the month of March customers can visit an installation at the retailer's experiential townhouse in London's Mayfair showcasing the Responsible Edit of designers.
  • Internal events – with the support of Matches mobs – the company's internal groups to drive positive change – it is fundraising for charities to drive inclusive and cultural practices. 

The Responsible Edit is available to shop at www.matchesfashion.com

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