Climate Change Fighter Profile: Rebecca Ballard
THE KARYN DRESS
Rebecca Ballard, Founder and CEO, Maven Women
The global garment industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world. The pesticides, synthetic materials and/or dyes used to make fabric, the waste that’s part of the production process, the environmental issues around the care of clothes, and the fact that the average American throws away about 80 pounds of clothing a year, makes this one dirty industry. I was a frustrated consumer, working in public interest law and nonprofit management and unable to find the type of clothing I desired. Thus, I created Maven Women to make clothing that honors people and planet at every step. In addition to creating our elegant wardrobe staples we also educate and advocate, teaching consumers how to be more thoughtful and working on cross-industry initiatives to move the needle.
Efforts in fighting climate change are important for me for so many reasons. I know that I’ve caused great harm to the planet with poor consumptive choices in the past and I want to do my part to be part of the solution. Some of the initiatives I have taken and also recommend to others are:
1- Buy less, buy better, and pay the true cost. Only purchase what you need. Don’t let advertising or what others say you need sway you. We can all live beautiful lives by living more simply. Have a high barrier to making a purchase, plus your pocketbook will thank you!
2- When you do bring something into your home consider its utility. Make sure that you are investing in investment items (e.g. clothing, furniture, etc.) and consider buying used, to keep items out of the landfill longer.
3- Eco-consciousness is often pricier than cheap goods. You will enjoy them more over time, but the initial sticker shock of good production may be hard to swallow. If you can’t purchase new, no sweat; look for something used that fits the bill and consider borrowing or swapping within your community.
As a DC resident I feel it’s our responsibility to take care of our community, and I am proud to live in a city where social justice is paramount. Many of us are also national and global leaders in our fields, and our choices have ripple effects and influence others.
THE KARYN DRESS
THE KARYN DRESS is part of Maven Women’s American Eco-Innovation Collection, made in Los Angeles, made out of a custom Ponte de Roma fabric that is primarily made of organic cotton certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard, which also includes key labor rights standards for all processors and manufacturers. Maven Women has partnered with Laguna Fabrics, a family-owned eco-conscious fabric creator. According to Maven Women, the impact a shopper makes by purchasing clothing from this company compared to buying conventional cotton clothing is as follows:
- 7 miles of driving emissions avoided
- 868.3 hours of bulb energy saved
- 24.5 sq. ft of land farmed without pesticides
- 100.8 days of drinking water saved
You can learn more about Maven Women’s sustainable collection and eco practices at www.mavenwomen.com.