Zahra’s Checklist: 4 Ethical Indian Brands Doing Denim Right
Let’s admit it: pretty much every girl’s closet includes a variety of jeans in various shapes, colours, and fits. But our denim obsession doesn’t just end there. You will also find skirts, shirts, dresses, jackets and assorted accessories in this universally-loved fabric. We love our denims and we cannot lie!
But while there are a host of international brands from the staple Levi’s to the pricier Diesel offering chic denims for the fashion forward girl, it’s time we give some of our homegrown brands an equal amount of love. Especially because of their efforts in making the humble denim garment a more sustainable, ethical addition to our everyday wardrobes. Here are 4 that are on my radar — keep scrolling to read why!
1. Korra Jeans
Founded by Shyam Sukhramani and Rajesh Jaju along with Mia Morikawa and Himanshu Shani (of 11.11 eleven/eleven), Korra is a homegrown denim brand that uses conscious processes to produce its jeans. From using natural and recycled materials like organic cotton threads and naturally dyed indigo selvedge denim to custom-made zippers, buttons and zippers, Korra’s jeans are handmade by individual tailors at its Okla Industrial Estate workshop in New Delhi. This is in keeping with the brand’s philosophy of avoiding mass-manufacturing, with each product signed by the tailor who made them, thereby bringing the customer closer to the maker of the product. Korra’s jeans can also be customised to fit your proportions perfectly. The label is extremely conscious of being environment-friendly and sustainable, ensuring that you’re not just comfortable in the fit but also the brand’s core philosophy. Now that’s something we can totally get behind!
SHOP NOW: Korra (Rs 2,900 onwards)
2. 11:11 eleven/eleven
This young designer label founded by Mia Morikawa and Himanshu Shani is all about sustainability mixed with fashion forward clothing for the modern Indian woman. While its regular label of ethical clothing consists of voluminous, flowing drapes juxtaposed with structural, androgynous detailing that accentuate the feminine form, its khadi denim line is made from lightweight selvedge denim using 100% organic cotton, and celebrates the human touch and traditional artisan processes. Each hand-stitched product is signed, numbered and dated by the artisan, exquisitely finished, and sent to you in its own khadi case.
SHOP NOW: 11.11 (Rs 16,000 onwards)
This Delhi-based contemporary fashion brand launched by Anand Ahuja is all about making basics cool. The label takes inspiration from real people with individualistic style — which is why it usually shoots its products and lookbooks on bloggers, stylists, photographers, etc of different heights and body styles. The idea is to encourage, empower, and facilitate self-expression via the clothes you wear. It’s functional basics in denim — from distressed boyfriend jeans to trendy denim culottes — are what you should be buying in bulk, not just because they’re perfectly on trend, but also because they’re super affordable!
SHOP NOW: Bhane (Rs 1,300 onwards)
Wearable fashion that also happens to be sustainable? Sold! While not an exclusive denim brand, we love Doodlage’s recycled take on denim. Founded by Kriti Tula, the hip brand redesigns and reconstructs old clothing or industrial waste to make something that is totally new and interesting. The brand favours upcycling old items as part of its eco-friendly, no-waste philosophy, and it’s an idea we wish more designers would get behind. I especially love the mish-mash of fabrics and textures in its denim line, which give it a fun, fresh vibe. If you like to experiment with your clothes, this is one label you must check out for its fashionably edgy and reinvented garments.
SHOP NOW: Doodlage (Rs 2,800 onwards)