Trend Bite: Sustainable Slogans

We are entering a new era of holistically health-conscious, sustainably woke consumers who want to align with brands that match their values. This, coupled with the world of social media and obsessive online sharing, has birthed a new apparel trend: the sustainable slogan. 

As we have explored in our SS21 trend, Eco Wanderer; awareness surrounding pollution in the clothing industry has elevated considerably. In conjunction with this growing demand for radical transparency and sustainable practices in our industry, Denim Dudes has been tracking an increase in conscious messaging in apparel over the last 12 months. 

Heavily influenced by a new wave of streetwear culture and Gen-Z driven attitudes, brands such as Story MFG, Online Ceramics and Stella McCartney are releasing earth-friendly slogans and psychedelic artworks that shift the conversation onto and around the products they make. This new movement not only allows consumers to flex their sustainable status and spiritual side but it also taps into the hippie streetwear aesthetic taking over the fashion world right now. 

Graphics and slogans are reminiscent of the ’70s with trippy, psychedelic styling and imagery of mushrooms, plants and animals taking center stage. Subjects such as climate change, crystals, kindness and yoga are all tackled and of course a generous helping of tie dye cements this trend in hippy heaven.

But it doesn’t pay to simply jump on the aesthetic trend; brands are riffing on the values they already practice. Stella McCartney, a known leader in the world of sustainable luxury fashion, told Vogue recently, “Normally you don’t see what we do in terms of manufacturing conscientiousness, all the efforts we make in doing what we do are in the product, not on the product. This season I wanted to make it more visible.” Her resort 2020 collection featured “We are the Weather” slogans, sun, cloud and animal graphics and cut-and-paste nature backdrops. 

A brand we have loved since their inception, Story MFG, was founded on sustainable techniques, local craft and natural processes. Their recent “No 1 Best Planet” tee gained them attention from High Snobriety as helping to shape a more sustainable future and their “Grateful Tee” range features slogans such as: “Peace is Love” and “We are Poisoning the Earth.”

The graphics are reminiscent of the brand Online Ceramics, which has been placed firmly at the center of this trend as far as hype and notoriety is concerned, especially after support from the likes of John Mayer and Bob Weir from the Grateful Dead. Founded last year by Elijah Funk and Alix Ross, who met at art school in Ohio, the brand’s hand-dyed tees are all still made in their Los Angeles studio. Other brands worth noting in this arena are Cactus Plant Flea Market, KKco and Advisory Board Crystals.

If there is one thing that the ever-expanding buying power of Gen-Z is teaching us, it is that they will not compromise their values for fashion, but rather support and flex brands that are both saying and doing something positive. They don’t want to be dictated to, instead they gravitate towards like-minded, positive companies that are consciously making a difference. As Advisory Board Crystals founder Heather Haber told WWD recently, “We want to offer information to live a better life, but not in a preaching or teaching way. Just by sharing the knowledge.”

Kingpins’ Trend Bites are created by Denim Dudes to give you a small taste of the full denim trend report they have prepared for the season. Interested in purchasing the full report? Visit Kingpins Trend page.

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