At Leka, transparency is at the forefront of everything that we do.
That’s why we make all of the clothing we sell right inside our shop in beautiful Victoria, BC, Canada. Our shop is the only one of it’s kind in Victoria – where you can watch the same clothes you are buying being cut & sewn right on site by our skilled and passionate team. Knowing who makes our clothes is half the battle when it comes to challenging the fast fashion industry standard. It means that we can ensure our production team is paid fairly, that the working conditions in our shop/studio are comfortable and safe & that the quality of the garments that we produce is consistently upheld to a standard of excellence. It’s important to us that we share information about where we source our fabrics, the design process, and the production team that makes the physical garments that you know and love.
The fabrics that we use to make our clothing are arguably the most important and influential piece of the whole garment-making puzzle. We know that the textile industry, as it currently stands, is one of the most harmful to the environment and as such, we take great measures to ensure that we source the most low-impact materials that we can. The criteria for fabric selection within our garment production are: environmental impact, ethical sourcing, quality, longevity, and appearance.
Synthetic fabrics involve a hugely destructive production process that cannot be rectified through certification or regulation. As such, we made the decision to only use natural fibres in our garments. Within the natural-fibre textile industry there are even more steps that need to be taken to ensure minimal processing, ethical production practises, and overall quality of the finished product.
We are not perfect. We know that there is, and will continue to be, room for growth in our standards as new technologies become more accessible for smaller-scale businesses (such as ours) and as our collective awareness begins to shift away from fast fashion towards investing in pieces that will last. We hold ourselves accountable for our practices and continually look for better alternatives.
The clean cotton project.
Cotton is one of the most utilized textiles – accounting for more than 40% of the world fibre industry – because of it’s high yield, low-cost and it’s ability to grow in a multitude of climates. Unfortunately, the cotton industry is also one of the most polluting industries in the world due to the high levels of pesticides used while growing. And yet, cotton has the potential to be a sustainable textile resource.
At Leka, we believe that by supporting textile manufacturers that use GOTS certified organic cotton and are transparent in their manufacturing processes, we can make a sincere positive difference in the environmental impact of the cotton industry as it has become today. Organic cotton costs more than traditionally-grown cotton, but we think it’s worth the investment.
Women are a powerful force in the world and we are all too aware of the systemic forces that work against female empowerment in all facets of society. With this knowledge in mind, we are proud to champion women in all that we do, including hiring an entirely female production team (and paying a living wage) as well as having a woman at the helm of the entire company. The women who buy from Leka are the pillars that support our growing project and we place their needs at the utmost importance, including emphasizing size diversity and ensuring that we create a safe, inclusive space for all to be part of.