Alternative Apparel

February 28, 2018

Ahhhh Alternative Apparel. This is essentially the coziest brand of clothing that has every comfy item that you ever wanted. It’s reminiscent of my college days wearing American Apparel sweatshirts but with a sophisticated, less overly saturated feel. Most of these beautifully crafted items feel like they could easily transition from lying on the couch on Sunday to an early morning Monday meeting.

Established in 1995 Alternative Apparel began working toward making the perfect t-shirt, and they succeeded. Since then they have expanded their line to include a wide range of apparel for both men and women all the while pursuing sustainable and ethical practices.

All of Alternative Apparel’s vendors adhere to the Fair Labor Association Workplace Code of Conduct and most of their factories are WRAP (Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production) Certified. WRAP is an independent, non-profit team of global, social compliance experts which ensures that the factory workplace conditions are fair, safe, and clean.

Alternative Apparel works globally in the USA, Guatemala, Dominican Republic, Peru, Egypt, India, China, and Thailand. Treating all people, in all countries, with respect and dignity is important to the company and they have recently put their money where their mouth is and joined the Fashion Revolution, a global movement calling for greater transparency, sustainability, and ethics in the fashion industry, from farmer to consumer.

Alternative Apparel is a fabric first company which means that they are invested in every aspect of the fabric making process. This ensures not only that the fabric is unbelievably soft but also that it is produced sustainably and ethically. To achieve some of their signature softness they use a G2 Eco-Wash finishing method which uses minimal chemicals, water, and energy resulting in 60% less water and energy use then traditional finishing methods. These methods leave their garments soft without the chemicals and energy often used to change the texture of fabrics.

A few of these soft fabrics that really stand out to me include the Eco Jersey, the Pima Cotton, and the Cotton Modal. Eco Jersey was the fabric that they discovered on the search for the perfect t-shirt; a combination of recycled polyester, organic cotton, and rayon. It is designed to feel like a worn in, soft, vintage t-shirt right from the get go. In addition to this and other fabrics created from these 3 textiles, Alternative Apparel produces 100% Pima Cotton garments in partnership with cotton farmers in Peru. Because Pima cotton fibers are so long, the fabric has a natural sheen and wears especially well over time . Lastly, and maybe the real winner in my book, is the Cotton Modal (50/50). Modal is manufactured from tree pulp and is similar to cotton in many ways. Modal does, however, wick moisture more quickly than cotton which makes this combo a true necessity in my wardrobe.

These fabrics and many others should make Alternative Apparel a go-to for anyone looking to add some serious comfort into their wardrobe while also supporting a company that is doing right by the planet and by the people that work to make these beautiful clothes.

Look for their pieces in the marketplace and check out their website here. Thanks for reading, more brand profiles to come!