Happy Earth Day Weekend and The Meaning of Bhoomki!
Posted on April 20 2012
Left: Swati Argade in one of her gingham creations.
I made it, Blogosphere Gods, just before Earth Day 2012, no less. I’m finally here. A little prayer: Help me make some noise, and get the message out about ethical fashion, and our latest fashion baby, Bhoomki.
For anyone else out there who may be reading other than the Blog Gods – the Gods obviously know who I am :)
I’m Swati Argade, Creative Director of a new ethical fashion brand called Bhoomki. Since 2003, I’ve been making sustainably fashioned clothes under my eponymous label, Swati Argade. Since 2007, my husband has been trying to get me to blog, and I’ve delayed this endeavor for Far. Too. Long. I’ve learned so many things along the way, and I hope to share those and forthcoming lessons with you on this designer’s journey. A core message I hope to impart to my clients can be summed up as this: Dressing ethically is part and parcel of self-expression. Narrating a story of integrity behind your clothes gives added meaning to your life, your artistry, your identity.
This month (could it be more appropriate that it’s Earth Month?), we launched our latest fashion project Bhoomki. And since we’re on the subject of the Earth (and Gods!), I can’t think of a more opportune time than now to tell you how we came up with the name Bhoomki.
We pulled from ancient Indian languages, and came up with a modern word that describes our collection.Bhoomi, the word for Mother Earth in Sanskrit and many other Indian languages, provides the root for Bhoomki. Ki means “of” in Hindi. Add the two words together to form bhoomi ki, drop the second syllable and you get: Bhoomki, OF MOTHER EARTH.
At Bhoomki, Mother Earth is top of mind. We source organic, recycled, and artisan fabrics for our limited quantity collections, and we manufacture locally to reduce carbon emission produced by oversea deliveries via air and sea. Our sourcing and production choices prevent additional pesticide use, support recycling of industrial waste, and promote the ancient craftsmanship of small producers around the world. Add to this our commitment to working with fair-trade factories where workers receive a living wage in comfortable working conditions. Whenever possible, we use low-impact dyes and offset shipping costs with carbon credits toward renewable energy initiatives.
For our first collection, we made three unique coats for Fall 2012 made from Texas organic cotton and recycled plastic bottles, sewed them in New York’s Garment Center, used low-impact dyes, and purchased Terrapass credits to offset those pesky automotive emissions. I can’t wait to share details of our design and production process for these coats over the coming months. I want to introduce you to our manufacturers, our embroiderers, and textile engineers to give you a sense of the village of people who participate in the making of a collection. What do you want to hear about first? Leave comments below!