Each product is an ongoing project to find the best possible way to mix outdoor recreation, clothing, and gear together in a way that helps humans, wildlife and the environment thrive collectively.
The Shirt Project
Can plastic be pulled out of our landfills, turned into clothes that feel and look great, all while benefiting our public lands and wild waterways? Welcome to our Shirt Project. Each of our shirts are made with up to 6 plastic water bottles that will no longer plague our oceans and lands longer than we will be alive.
Here’s how it works. Turns out, those plastic bottles can be broken down and woven into the exact makeup of a polyester yarn. When broken down, you have a whole new level of ‘Recycled Polyester’ fabric. From there, we mix it with a USA Grown Organic Cotton for strength and durability, and a Natural Beech Tree fiber for incredible softness.
It doesn’t end here though. We track our production process right down to the humans that are sewing the fabrics together. We make sure our designs are printed with Eco Friendly Water-Based Inks, and we ship our products in a Plastic Free package. And last but not least, we donate 10% of our proceeds back to our country's public lands. After all, that’s where our inspiration comes from.
The outcome, a durable, super soft, nice looking tee that leaves an impact you can be proud of. Want to dig into more to this project? Here’s our breakdown:
Our shirts are what’s called a Tri-Blend, which consists of 50% Repreve Polyester, 25% Organic Cotton, and 25% Tencel Modal. Let’s dig more into each one of those.
29 million bottles of water every year are disposed of by Americans alone. These bottles have the same plastic chemical makeup as polyester, so they can be taken out of our oceans, turned into polyester yarn, and put back into good use. That’s exactly what Repreve does. This eliminates the need to produce more plastics and many of the fossil fuels required to create them.
We use Organic Cotton that's grown right here in the USA where pesticide and insecticide regulations are far superior than most other countries where cotton is grown. At the same time, worker regulations in America’s cotton industry are also far superior than most other countries that harvest the crop.
Modal is the secret to the luxurious softness of our tri-blend shirt. An evolved form of rayon, the Lenzing Modal used in our shirts is made from sustainably harvested beech trees in PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) certified European forests. Beech trees self-multiply and require no artificial planting or irrigation, and they are extremely resistant to pests and other environmental damage. Lenzing uses a proprietary, low-impact process to break the wood pulp down into fibers.
Not only are these materials better for the environment as they are, but all the raw materials except the Modal are sourced right here in the US, shipped to Haiti to be sewn into shirts, and shipped back to the US for sale.
In the apparel industry, a typical t-shirt can travel 16,000 miles: cotton grown in one country, shipped to another to be processed into fiber, another to be spun into yarn, another to be knitted into fabric, and so on. Haiti, on the other hand, is a half hour flight from Miami and that’s as far as our fabric and shirts have to go – a significant reduction in shipping emissions.
The most important ingredient in the process of creating a shirt, is the human. With the number of countries a shirt can see before it's ready to be sold, and the size of the apparel industry in and of itself, it’s so easy to forget about the humans working in sweatshops, barely making enough income to cover basic life needs.
In countries like Haiti, where the average worker earns a mere $3/day to support a family of eight, kids are at a high-risk of being sent to an orphanage. The typical orphan in Haiti is not without parents, but rather without parents who can afford to care for their most basic needs—food, shelter, clothing, education and basic healthcare.
Allmade, our manufacturer, has partnered with the Global Orphan (GO) Project to produce great quality shirts, while fighting generational poverty in Haiti. GOEX (short for Global Orphan EXchange), the Haitian facility where Allmade shirts are produced, is among a number of ventures the GO Project has developed to create dignified work that keeps families together. They pay workers 5x the going rate for similar jobs in the area; an amount carefully calculated to meet the basic needs of a Haitian household. Not only that, but 100% of GOEX’s profits are dedicated to programs that support orphans.
Among these projects is the Transition Academy. The Transition Academy is designed to help children who are aging out of community-sponsored care, providing them with housing, education, life and vocational skills to help ensure a successful transition to adult independence. The Academy offers majors in Agriculture, Diesel Mechanics, and Apparel. Those studying Apparel learn hands-on skills at the GOEX facility where our shirts are produced.
Allmade has a second factory in Haiti, along with one in Honduras as well. Each meet similar sustainable and humane standards.
Our shirts are printed at an environmentally friendly, Certified Green Denver, t-shirt screen printing shop, located in Denver, Colorado. Being a home state printer, our shipping emissions are drastically cut when compared to shipping across the country. Our shirts are also being printed with a water-based ink that’s not only better for the environment, but it’s better for your skin and feels great on the shirt.
When it’s finally time for you to receive that awesome new shirt you just ordered, we will be sending it to you in an EcoEnclose 100% recycled kraft mailer with a whopping 90% post consumer content. Not only is this mailer constructed entirely from recovered trash, but once it has made its journey and served its purpose, our mailers can easily be redeposited back into the paper recycling stream.
Is this the best we can do? Absolutely not. At least, that’s what we will always tell ourselves in order to keep striving to do better. As we grow as a company, we have a couple of promises we would like to lay out.
Our projects are always about pushing the limits, and they will continue to do that. We are here to find the best possible way to mix outdoor recreation, clothing, and products together in a way that helps humans and the environment thrive collectively.
We will always hold responsible business over better profit margins. We are no anomaly—our business needs to make money just like any other—but we hope we can find, and perhaps promote, the path to a socially & environmentally responsible business plan that makes both the profit margins happy and mother nature happy.
Here are some of the projects we want to look into for the immediate future. As we grow, we will change and update this list: