The standard time between order and delivery is 1-2 weeks, but if you are
in a far-flung corner of the globe it could take longer! You will
receive a tracking number as soon as the item ships, and updates as it
makes the journey to your closet.
Did you know that the energy, water and chemicals used in caring for a garment can take a huge toll on the environment? In fact, this stage in the life cycle of a garment can be even more harmful than production.
For all garments we recommend spot cleaning rather than washing when possible, and when you do have to wash, either hand wash or ensure that the washing machine is full and on cold-water mode. Avoid dry cleaning, skip the softeners and hang or lay flat to dry.
If you are washing any of our natural dye premium items please wash separately as the color may slightly run.
To be honest, it’s one of those overused and overly simplified terms that markets well (ie: anti-sweatshop, sweatshop free). A sweatshop is basically a factory that has very bad pay and conditions for workers.
As a consumer, rather than trusting “sweatshop-free” garments, it’s best to go a little deeper. You want to be sure that your garments are not produced in factories that use forced or child labour, that the facilities are safe, that workers are not subject to discrimination or harassment, that there is no unauthorized sub-contracting, and that they are earning at least the country’s minimum wage. If a brand has a supplier code of conduct this is a good place to start (see ours here), also look for brands that make an effort to be accountable for conditions their supply chain.
Most fashion brands who produce overseas do not own their factories – these factories produce clothing for several different brands. This allows brands to avoid the cost of keeping a factory busy at all times, and gives local businesses a chance to meet the demand of western markets. It’s not a bad system, but it definitely has its flaws.
The main flaw is that brands are not in any way accountable to the people who produce their clothing. Buyers for big fashion companies are free to push for lower and lower prices, without worrying about the dirty little details like worker wages, factory safety or workplace harassment. Once you start asking fabric mills and factories to meet labour standards, it becomes harder to demand a rock-bottom price.
The good news? TAMGA and a growing number of fashion labels big and small have shown that it’s possible to produce clothing overseas while also meeting fair labour standards. If consumers keep asking how their products are made, it’s a sure thing that more and more brands will care about it as well.
To ensure that workers are treated fairly throughout our supply chain, TAMGA developed a Supplier Code of Conduct – check it out here. Having our direct suppliers sign this document not only leads to an ongoing conversation on workers and the environment, it also allows us to ask all of the questions that we see as important, and hold the supplier accountable for their answers.
But not all our suppliers are “direct”. Some actors in our supply chain, like the factories that produce the yarn before it is made into fabric, are not under any contract with TAMGA Designs. When it comes to these “secondary suppliers”, we ensure that they have globally trusted and industry-leading certifications on labour and environmental standards such as the Swiss OEKO-TEX label and the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).
After living and working in Bangladesh and Indonesia, we know that the garment industry can have a very positive impact on a country’s development – aka education, women’s empowerment, public health, and economic growth. The skills and craftsmanship found in Indonesia and Bangladesh, as well as other garment exporting countries like Vietnam and Cambodia, go well beyond the sewing of a cheap t-shirt. TAMGA wants our customers to see how special ‘made in Indonesia’ , or ‘made in Bangladesh’ really is.
We believe that developing countries need decent jobs to combat poverty and achieve equitable, sustainable economic growth, and we want to be a part of ensuring that the garment industry can offer them.
Great question! Ultimately, “sustainable” is a pretty loaded word, and there is not much about an urban, oil and water dependant lifestyle that could truly be sustained over the long-term.
That being said, our fabrics are a whole lot more sustainable than most consumer products. The Micro-TENCEL® that we use is made from wood pulp, harvested from renewable forests grown on non-productive land, and 99.5-99.8% of the water and solvents used in producing it are recycled in a (nearly) closed loop process. Our Modal is quite similar, and recycles 95% of the water and solvents. Our final fabric, Organic Cotton, is grown in Gujarat, India, using non-GMO seeds that respect bio-diversity, absolutely no pesticides, and consuming less water than conventional cotton.
To answer this question, it’s important to understand what low-impact dyes are NOT. Conventional synthetic dyes are not referred to as “high-impact”, but they are pretty scary. 60-70% of dyes in the world are known as ‘azo dyes’, and contain carcinogenic heavy metals such as chrome, copper and zinc, as well as toxic substances such as Formaldehyde and Dioxin. 10-25% of textile dyes are lost during the dyeing process, with up to 20% being discharged into waterways. In the textile industry alone, up to 200,000 tons of these dyes are leaked into waterways each year.
Low-impact dyes are fibre reactive dyes that do not contain any known toxic chemicals or heavy metals, require less water and have an absorption rate of at least 70%, creating much less waste water than conventional synthetic dyes. These dyes are ceritifed by the OEKO-Tex 100 standard, and in some cases even the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).
These dyes are recognized as the “best available technology” in textile dyeing, however they have their downsides in our eyes. Low-impact dyes are still synthetic, and are produced from petrochemicals. The effluent is still highly alkaline, and if not treated properly can be harmful to waterways. TAMGA is looking critically at our whole supply chain and looks forward to continually improving how we use colorants.
Glad you asked! We are a ‘Pending B-Corp’, a body that requires members to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability and transparency. We see this as the most well rounded indicator of responsible business out there – see more here.
TAMGA is committed to being a socially and environmentally responsible business, however many of the industry-wide certifications that ‘certify’ this commitment can be very expensive for a start-up business to obtain. To get our supply chain verified by international accreditation bodies, we received quotes as high as $20,000 USD, which included flying consultants into the country.
We decided instead to focus our energy and budget on using suppliers that are themselves certified by bodies such as GOTS and OEKO-Tex 100, and having all of our direct suppliers sign our supplier code of conduct. In the future, we will consider obtaining industry-wide certifications, however for the time being we are committed to dedicating our resources towards full transparency, so our customers can see for themselves how we produce – check out our supply chain here.