The Slow Fashion Journey
The journey for this dress begins at the Tohsang Cotton Village in Eastern Thailand - an ethical and sustainable cotton producer comprised of local artisans from the surrounding Khongchiam communities.
In an effort to reduce water consumption, the Tohsang Cotton Village grows the cotton naturally along the banks of the Mekong River - this is performed without irrigation methods, meaning the crop is only watered when the river rises during rainfall.
According to the Water Footprint Network:
'The global average water footprint of cotton fabric is 10,000 litre per kilogram.'
By using these natural methods, Tohsang Cotton Village's water footprint is near zero, which benefits both the surrounding environment and the communities living downstream.
The process is also free of any nasty chemicals, so not only can the farmers, river wildlife and surrounding communities reap the benefits of a healthy, pesticide-free environment, you can feel happy in the knowledge that you are wearing something gentle next to your skin.
Once the natural cotton fibre is harvested, it is dried, the cotton seeds are separated from the cotton, and then spun into yarn ready for hand dyeing and weaving.
The Natural Dyeing Process
A local artisan, Tien, creates the natural dye by using bark from the locally-grown Velvet Tamarind tree. Utilising ancient methods, he soaks and infuses the cotton to create the earthy tones that we see in the Burnt Sienna shade.
Once the dyeing process is complete, the cotton is ready for weaving.
Weaving it all Together
Prairie, the manager of Tohsang Cotton Village, uses the profits from the fabric production to outsource the task of hand weaving to local artisans in the community - mostly women who own a traditional loom at home, who are then able to earn additional income for their homes and families doing something that they love.
Why We Love Working This Way
Ethical, Slow Fashion
Partnering with The Tohsang Cotton Village is incredibly satisfying, as both our values and beliefs on the production of slow fashion are very much aligned. By promoting the skills of local artisans they are not only keeping local traditions alive, but also empowering skilled workers to earn a living doing something they love - two elements that are hugely important when it comes to the success of small communities.
Unique Shades and Textures
One thing we love about hand weaving with naturally dyed cotton is the subtle differences that occur in the colour and texture: the quality never waivers, but the variances add depth and character, enriching each dress with a uniqueness only found in this type of clothing production.
How to Wear
With a v-neckline at the front, open back detailing, and knotted shoulder straps, the Cherrada Dress lends itself well to many different occasions: keep it casual with strappy summer wedges, or pop on a pair of heels to dress it up for an evening do. For those chilly winter nights, why not layer up with a chunky knit and ankle boots?
However you want to wear the Cherrada, this dress is made to impress!
We would love to see how you wear yours, please get in touch below or tag us on Instagram or Facebook with your pictures.