Why it's more than a hoodie

Once you have discovered something that you are passionate about, it becomes essential to pursue opportunities in that field. For me, that’s the environment — and I want to leave this world in a better position than when I entered it.

Growing up, my parents taught us lessons from ‘turning off the lights’ to buying in-season food. It seems like common sense now, but for much of my teens, I just thought my parents were being painful.

It wasn’t until my early 20’s that I truly began to understand and value the fundamental principles of sustainability — and what it really meant for the planet. Now, having just completed my B.Sc. honours thesis, and the concepts of recycling, repurposing and thoughtful living have now become a passion and an absolute commitment.

I believe there’s a need to encourage and educate people to be more mindful of how they impact the environment with their choices, and also suggest how they can help to bring about change.

So when Kathmandu asked me to give honest feedback on their new EarthColours Hoodie, I was up for the challenge.

Hanging out in the hoodie in Japan
Hanging out in the hoodie in Japan

Under the Surface

Besides the fact that the hoodie has a real earthy, natural look which I love, what appealed to me most is what lies beneath the surface. The hoodie is made from 70% recycled plastic bottles and 30% thoughtfully sourced cotton. The dye colouring is actually made from agricultural food waste, like secondhand oranges.

In my opinion, we need to see more items like this. It is great to see Kathmandu exploring alternative material options that can help craft a healthier planet — it makes it more than a hoodie, and a step in the right direction.

Surprisingly the hoody is really soft and comfortable. Who would have guessed you can turn waste into something this amazing!

The Earth Hoodie offers comfort on the trail
The Earth Hoodie offers comfort on the trail

Small steps to protect the planet

As individuals, responsibility lies with all of us taking small steps to protect our planet; such as recycling, composting and preserving resources.

We can support the planet further by making a conscious effort to interact with companies who are developing a sustainable focus and producing goods that not only love the planet back — but are also functional and durable. There is no limit to how far your support can go.

Companies too, need to be accountable for the entire supply chain of an item; the sourcing of its material, its quality of production, its distribution, and the disposal of any waste generated including the item’s packaging.

In my opinion there needs to be more even more focus on alternative strategies which can help reduce production/distribution/packaging waste and can also assist to re-purpose faulty or returned items.

Consciously targeting both waste and unsaleable products at the individual store level as well as through corporate strategy is likely to produce clever, alternative options and solutions. Every reduction at the individual level scales up to a grand movement when supported by larger companies.

We’ve been focused on sustainability for more than 30 years, and thanks to passionate environmental advocates like Bec, we’ve created our most sustainable hoodie yet.