Sustainable fashion is an aspect of fashion that involves using materials or processes that are not harmful to the environment, therefore preserving environmental, social, and economic benefits for future generations. African fashion brands such as SoleRebels, I.AM.ISIGO, Suave Kenya and many more employ the use of sustainable materials like cotton, raffia to churn out unique products for customers.
ZYNE is another African fashion brand that employs sustainable practices and materials to achieve their goals. However, how does sustainability help the brand achieve its goals? And how does this affect African communities?
ZYNE is a sustainable Moroccan fashion brand that deals mainly in the production of traditional Moroccan footwear and babouche for women all over the world. The brand, which was launched in 2016, combines local craftsmanship with a touch of modern fashion to deliver fresh designs and products.
ZYNE is owned by best friends, Zineb Britel and Laura Pujol, who both had a burning desire to create something meaningful and empower their country. Zineb Britel, the brand’s designer, studied Fashion Design in Paris and gained experience working with top fashion labels in the country. Laura Pujol, on the other hand, has a passion for bringing the painstaking craft of luxury goods making to life and honouring those who make it possible. With this balance, the ZYNE fashion brand was born.
“Our goal is to preserve and promote our Moroccan heritage by encouraging more women to learn traditional Moroccan embroidery techniques, so that it can be passed onto the next generation and other generations to come.” – Zineb Britel
As a sustainable fashion brand, ZYNE deals with handwoven raffia fibres while using old embroidery techniques to manufacture their products. By employing local private manufacturers and artisans, the fashion brand showcases the amazing craftsmanship that is embedded in Morocco.
Zineb draws inspiration from everyday life, souks, and multiple cities in Morocco. This ensures that a sense of Morocco as a whole nation is incorporated in each pair of shoes. As a result of their design tactics, their products are now widely recognised, as they have even been worn by Megan Markle, the Duchess Of Sussex.
With their unique designs also, the fashion brand was part of the winners of the OpenMyMed Prize 2018, which is a competition that aims to detect new creative talents all over Africa.
How ZYNE Is Affecting African Communities
With their sustainable practices and methods of production, such that the pair of shoes produced by the brand are made by integrating dead-stock leather and raffia derived from luxury factories, the brand significantly reduces production waste in Morocco.
“Our responsibility to the Moroccan environment is something we don’t take lightly. In every process of our production, we take into consideration how it will make lasting effects in our community down the road.” – Zineb Britel
Since the shoes produced have to be done using traditional embroidery techniques, the fashion brand provides jobs for many craftsmen and artisans in the community. And just like the founders shared, their workers gain a sense of independence and confidence because their contribution to the business is recognised by the world.
ZYNE also recently launched the Moroccan Young Artists Collective, MYA, which allows emerging designers to feature their collections at the ZYNE store in Casablanca. This platform would serve as a communication channel for artisans and will give more exposure and reach to the designers while shaping the restart of business in Morocco.
As Moroccan fashion entrepreneurs, they understand the need to elevate local products to a global view to aid potential financial growth.
The ZYNE fashion brand is one that has sustainability at their core while providing for residents of African communities an opportunity to showcase their talent and in-born expertise.
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