Asos is supporting African artisans with a new ethical fashion collection.
The trendy retailer partnered with Soko Kenya, a Kenyan clothing manufacturer, to launch its Made in Kenya Collection for Spring/Summer 2017. The collection, which culls inspiration from children’s drawings and wildlife, helps local communities with employment training and sustainable initiatives.
The Spring/Summer 2017 Made in Kenya collection incorporates elements from traditional African kangas and culture. Warm weather pieces, including maxi dresses and fabric-blocked shirts, feature bright tropical florals, foliage prints and schoolchildren’s designs. Upcycled and reworked denim will also be included in the collection’s lineup. All pieces, which cost less than $106, are designed by Asos’ in-house team and made by clothing manufacturer Soko Kenya.
Made in Kenya will be sold under Asos’ Eco Edit flagship brand. Previously known as the Green Room, the Eco Edit is a section on Asos’ website where consumers can buy sustainable products. With Eco Edit, Asos engages consumers in its mission to support global craftsmanship.
Since 2010, Asos and Soko Kenya have worked together to benefit Kenyan communities.
Asos’ Africa Collection, which includes the Made in Kenya line, is an ongoing collaboration between Asos and Soko Kenya, which prides itself on providing safe jobs and training to local artisans, while Asos helps it with brand development and team recruiting. Over the past six years, Soko Kenya has increased its fleet from four to 50 employees.
Asos Foundation and the Soko Community Trust also co-developed Stitching Academy Kenya, a Kenya-based hub that trains local workers in garment manufacturing. Graduates of the program are provided with low cost access to equipment in order to start their own businesses.
Last year, Asos also debuted ‘The Pipeline Roadshow,’ a series of workshops that focused on women’s health, family finance and eye care, by traveling to rural villages near to Soko Kenya’s Rukinga Wildlife Sanctuary location.
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