The 23-year-old Belgian entrepreneur Loes Vandekerckhove wants her passion for sustainable fashion, sports and travel sections. That she does with a first sportcollectie under the name Pure by Luce, via crowdfunding on the market are trying to bring.
How did you come up with the idea to own a sustainable sportswear brand to establish?
Loes: ‘The idea I had for a little longer. When I was two years ago during my studies on exchange was in Mexico I sat with my head in the clouds. I wanted to after graduation not for a big company to go to work, but to do something with my passions: sustainable fashion, travel and sport. When I got home after the exchange I saw something more realistic. I thought to myself that I still had no experience and am starting to apply. I got a traineeship for six months in a fashion company. There, I learned a lot from, but it made me not happy. I worked further on my idea around a sustainable sportlijn and conducted research on sustainable sporttextiel and if that is at all possible. That turned out to be not so simple, because not all substances as durable in the market are also really durable.
Then I had my idea pitched at Start it @ KBC, and they were excited. That has meant that I’m in motion shot, and my plans am starting run.’
“I wanted something on the market where people really want to go’
‘That it is durable had to be, for me, was very logical. I happen to be in contact come by a assignment at school, which I in my personal life much more aware am become of sustainable fashion. In the past, I followed the trends, but by me in the industry to deepen, I knew that such a shopgedrag just not sustainable. I discovered brands that are doing a good job and more sustainable production and focused me in it.”
Did you have the impression that there is not much supply is in the durable sportkledingindustrie?
Loes: ‘Three years ago, I almost completely gone cold turkey on conventional clothing. I sport quite like it and found not a lot of sportswear that is fully sustainable, certainly not in Europe. In Australia and the United States, you have a few brands, but by which is here get you increase your footprint and in addition, some made of recycled pet bottles, which for me is not durable enough. The more you mind to it, the less choice you have. I missed really sportswear that are technically good and also durable. I saw that there was a place for a new brand.’
The materials which are made from recycled plastic bottles did not meet your requirements. Where are the items of Pure by Luce made?
Loes: ‘I’ve been to Premiere Vision, the stoffenbeurs in Paris, pulled. I Econyl discovered, that is a fiber made from recycled polyamide. The raw materials here are not pet, but textieloverschotten. A large part of the waste of fashion snijoverschotten in factories to be disposed of. Other items, such as old fishing nets can be up to ecological fiber to be processed. In terms of quality, this textile is comparable with other technically high-quality sportswear. The wearing comfort is very high and during the wash, there are no pieces of clothing separately, as this is often a problem with synthetic substances.’
“It took a while before I get the right textile and the right factory to tackle. Luckily I’m surrounded by the right people. So I help Start it and Flanders DC, thanks to CloseThe Loop-tool of Jasmien Wynants. To Bruno Van Steenbergen, I’ve also received a lot, he is a consultant for fashion brands around sustainability. The uncle of my friend works in addition happen to be in a studio in Paris and they could also give tips around ethical production.
What a pity it is to big fashion brands is that they are often one aspect of sustainability will tackle or in the paint, but it is not their core business change. In that area, I have the advantage that I small beginning and have to follow-up and monitoring. I have a small run in a small factory in Portugal, while large brands often work with numerous factories spread all over the world. They are rigid and have certain contacts with factories, which they know that they have clothes on short time and for a low price can produce. The factory where I work is 45 minutes ‘ drive from Porto and is excited about fair production. They are by two external organisations checked, but I’ve also always welcome. They have nothing to hide. That trust was extremely important during my search. I also came producers against my demand for fair production weglachten, but in the factory where I now was in the sea am gone, they are themselves also behind the ethical story.’
You start your brand through a crowdfunding. Do you know which audience you reach?
Loes: ‘The first thirty percent that you acquire. of a crowdfunding usually comes through the hard core, so family and friends. I am already a year warm, so it is logical that they are there as first. Then you have the people who are looking for sustainable fashion, but also just couples who are attracted by the style of the designs. I also get the comment that people my campaign support because they are looking for a unique sporting outfit. In the fitness walking everyone in the same brands around, so if something else wants to attract, you can also contact me. I think the biggest part of the people that are the brand’s support for the style. For me personally, it is the sustainable story is very important, but I don’t think that the priority is for the general public. Maybe there are people who, out of sympathy, support, because they took me through to know, or because it is a Belgian brand. ‘
The style was also very important. How did you do the design addressed?
Loes: ‘The first print, Tulum, is inspired by my time in Mexico. I have worked with the young Belgian textielduo Jeu de Fil and have them gebriefd that I print wanted, which was reminiscent of the Mexican fan palm. The next print will be based on the traditional Mexican textiles. The models are fairly basic, so the print can shine. I got together with two friends brainstormed about what models we would choose. After that brainstorming session, I have the sketches in a closed facebook group with about fifty people posted and feedback requested. The final design is a collaboration with all those people. I also wanted something on the market where people are actually looking for.”
If you want Pure by Luce support? Help Loes than with the crowdfunding of her first collection. click here for more information.
- “I wanted to show that things can be different: so is my fair fashion shop established’
- A pioneer in sustainable sportmode: ‘With Pure by Luce, I want a gap in the market filling’
- ‘Transparency is one of the most difficult subjects for the fashion industry’
- Fair fashion with Mieke in Ghent: ‘I want to be in the evening not have to worry about the clothing that I sold you”
- Most of the fashion brands to communicate not transparent enough
- Read all articles about Fashion Revolution