Style Guide|Men's and women's hats|ethical Focus

By Clara

Do you care about making more ethical choices? Read on for our guide to more sustainable designer hat styles.

Fast Fashion Vs Slow Fashion

Have you heard of these terms?

Fast fashion: the term generally equates global corporations that manufacture high volumes at the lowest possible cost, with a final product that is essentially disposable and lasts only a season. The real cost of fast fashion to the people producing it and the environment is becoming increasingly clear. If you’d like to find out more, see this article in Psychology Today.

Slow fashion: The term slow fashion was coined by design activist and writer Kate Fletcher, inspired by the Slow Food movement which focusses on high quality ingredients and fair, non-harmful production methods. The Slow Food manifesto states that “Everyone can contribute to Good, Clean and Fair quality through their choices and individual behavior”. In other words, every consumer can have positive impact with what they choose to buy. When it comes to slow fashion, Kate Fletcher stated in The Ecologist: “In melding the ideas of the slow movement with the global clothing industry, we build a new vision for fashion in the era of sustainability: where pleasure and fashion is linked with awareness and responsibility.”

The issues here are complex - particularly when it comes to growing, weaving and dyeing textiles, hence why I’m using the term ‘more sustainable’ as coined by consultancy Green Strategy to describe our efforts to offer more ethical fabric options to our clients. You can read their ‘seven forms of sustainable fashion’ here.

Designer hats made to last

Every Karen Henriksen hat has been conceived, designed and produced in-house in Karen’s London studio. In this way the designs stand out from other designer hat brands who manufacture in the UK or internationally. The hats have that distinctive hand-made feel, they are soft and you can tell they are not made in a factory. The hats are made right here, and once completed they are sent straight to you. In addition we experience very little wasted stock as most hats are made to size and to order.

We absolutely adhere to the principles of slow fashion. Karen designs for longevity and timeless style - in other words, long-term use is the goal here. While it may feel like more of an inital investment, over the years the cost-per-wear is in fact very low.

Our raw materials: yarns and sustainability considerations

Organic Cotton

Style guide: designer hats for men in organic cotton

If you’re concerned about the impact of textile production and sustainability, you might consider a hat made from certified organic cotton. With organic cotton there is no need for pesticides and this in turn protects water supplies for the growers and their local communities.

Here are a few Spring/Summer men’s organic cotton hat designs available in the shop in fresh tones of light green, pale blue and pale grey. Click on each hat to see it in the shop.

The benefits of linen

Most of our linen hats are made from Irish linen. This beautifully textured yarn is hard wearing, and is generally considered a more eco-friendly choice than cotton. Linen is made from the flax plant which requires less water than cotton to grow. Other parts of the plant are also used to create flaxseeds and linseed oil alongside linen yarn. Here is a small selection of Karen’s designs for men and women in linen.

Click on each hat to see it in the shop.

Style guide: Men’s designs in linen

Style guide: Women’s designs in linen

Hope you enjoyed this style guide to our more sustainable Spring/Summer hat designs - watch this space for new additions and please don’t hesitate to ask if you have any questions on this important and fascinating subject!