What was the inspiration for Modavanti?
The idea for Modavanti.com was born out of our desire to make a social impact through business. The fashion industry in particular has been slow to change the way it operates. To give you one example, it takes 400 gallons of water to grow enough cotton to produce just one cotton t-shirt. This is clearly an unsustainable path and we believe that by promoting designers who are producing clothes in a more socially conscious manner we can bring about real change within the fashion industry. We believe that profit and progress can go hand in hand.
What is Modavanti.com’s biggest challenge being be a company who sources sustainability?
Our biggest challenge is also our biggest opportunity – and that is convincing consumers that they can be stylish and sustainable at the same time. There is a perception surrounding sustainable fashion that the clothes are not trendy, that they crunchy and granola. This perception is far removed from reality, and we’re convinced that once you look at the clothing and accessories available on Modavanti.com you will think about sustainable fashion in a whole new light.
You have a fantastic curated collection of clothing and accessories. How do you find designers and brands to work with?
One of the hard things in finding designers is that many sustainable designers don’t like to advertise the fact they are producing sustainably because they believe it will diminish their appeal in the eyes of the customer. We believe the opposite, so it often involves a lot of legwork in tracking down designers who meet both our aesthetic and our sustainability threshold. But we’ve also had a number of designers who have sought us out since we’ve launched because they see that we have a wonderful platform which we can showcase their products.
How did you chose the charities that you donate to?
Our charities were chosen because we believe they address some of the problems we’ve identified with the fashion industry. It was also very important that the causes we partner with had strong feedback loops and used the money in the field rather than to pay their employees. We picked Charity:Water because the fashion industry wastes a tremendous amount of water every year. Not only that, but apparel factories pollute many of our rivers and streams, particularly in developing countries, and Charity Water helps alleviate those problems. We support Nest because they promote fair labor rights and the ancient traditions of artisans in countries such as India. We partnered with 19th Amendment because their mission is to keep the next generation of fashion designers producing sustainably right here in America — a goal that aligns very much with our ethos.