Organic planet friendly cotton clothing – our shop is now open!

 

Great news, we now have a Sweet Life and Lemons shop!

I am really proud to have teamed up with Teemill and Rapanui, who make ethically produced organic clothing. After I discovered Teemill by chance through a friend, I researched their company and I was impressed!

Their ethical production methods struck a chord with my love of all things natural and sustainable. I instantly thought this would be a great fit for this blog.

How are their clothes produced?

Their cotton is truly organic, which is so much better for the ecosystem. They use insect traps and co-planting instead of harmful pesticides, and cow manure as fertiliser, encouraging biodiversity.

Even organic cotton needs water of course, so they grow their cotton in the North of India where the monsoons provide full reservoirs. It matters where it grows when it comes to water usage.

You’ll be glad to know that they are GOTS certified organic.

The ethical journey of production doesn’t stop there. Once the cotton is grown, it is harvested and taken to be processed. Usually by camel or truck. The waste seeds that are produced during processing are sold as organic cow feed. Vegetable oil is squeezed out for use in food products. Every part of the plant is put to good use.

The cotton farmers get a regional government guaranteed price, but the better the quality, the more they get. Fair is fair.

gardening queen t-shirt

What happens to the wastewater?

Dyehouses are a major source of polluted wastewater in the clothing industry. This is where Rapanui are different, as they recover the wastewater, clean and re-circulate it.

They filter the water using reverse osmosis and distillation. The resulting water coming out of the filters and going back round to be used again is crystal clear.

It is literally clean enough to drink. And it is reused for the next batch in a closed loop system.

Bee friend t-shirt

How are the clothes made?

The factory has integrated spinning, dye, weaving, cutting and sewing. This leads to cost savings which are reinvested in the facilities.  It provides a clean, light and modern environment. The factory is audited for a wide range of social and sustainability criteria and the plant is powered by renewable energy.

That also makes it easier to ensure compliance, and this factory is audited (SA8000 Certified) for a wide range of social and sustainability criteria.

organic t-shirt

The plant is powered by renewable energy

They own a solar farm in the UK and power their manufacturing through it. The factory in India owns two wind farms and a 150kw PV array. They are committed to investing in renewable energy.

Their factory also uses machine-to-machine communications technology that allows them to dynamically turn equipment on and off when needed. This balances their manufacturing demand and energy generation.

gardening tote bag

The Printing Process

Teemill are constantly developing their technology to improve all aspects of their printing. They are working on lower impact inks, software, machinery and automation technologies. Products are only made after they have been ordered so there is no waste.

All this allows them to invest more in their team and their vocational training programs. Over 40 young people on the Isle of Wight were helped getting into full-time work. Which is where Teemill are based, right here in the UK.

wildlife supporter t-shirt

No Plastic packaging!

We all know that our oceans are being damaged by plastic. Teemill use splash-proof mailer bags made out of paper and big orders come in cardboard boxes, with paper based tape.

And they re-use their waste material in their packaging, like stickers and packaging that is made from the recycled cotton off-cuts from their t-shirt manufacturing.

I’m so happy to hear that!

My Designs

I really hope you like my designs. I felt there was a gap in the market for garden and wildlife lovers but I also wanted to spread positive messages. And humour where possible!

I will be adding more designs and also more items like hoodies, sweaters and long-sleeved t-shirts. And if there is anything you would like to customise, you can actually design your own by using the ‘custom’ button on the top right.

Hopefully my designs have also given you some great gift ideas, let me know if there is anything you would like me to add to the shop or designs. I’d love to hear from you!

PS. One small request: if you enjoyed reading this, please share it 🙂 A share would really help a lot with the success of this blog. It won’t take long and I would be so grateful. Please pin, tweet or share on Facebook. Thank you so much!

 

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