April 7, 2021
Sustainability Spotlight: Australian Fashion Brand ELK
Founded in Melbourne by spouses Marnie Goding and Adam Koniaras in 2004, ELK is characterised by deliberation, refinement, and ethics. The brand is a proponent of ‘slow fashion’ – as opposed to wasteful ‘fast fashion’ practices – and crafts ready-to-wear collections that are designed to last. These bi-annual collections feature sophisticated simplicity and dedicated sustainability, with natural hues, fine quality raw materials, and the traditional skills of independent manufacturers all comprising beautiful clothing with an ethical foundation.
ELK is committed to being as ethical and sustainable as possible, aiming to participate in a truly circular economy with positive social practices. The brand has begun releasing transparency reports, listing all the factories that they work with so that customers can know precisely who makes their clothes and where. While the COVID-19 pandemic delayed their latest report, ELK’s 2020 Transparency Report (covering manufacturing in 2019 and some of 2020) highlights new initiatives they managed to implement despite the tumultuous conditions of the last eighteen months: from solar energy to a guide to sustainable fibres and materials, the brand has managed to stay on track.
A major part of ELK’s success in their sustainable practices comes from their long-term planning, with a set of goals for 2025 guiding how they approach manufacturing. The brand aims to be a carbon neutral and zero-waste business, to make their packaging our of reusable, recyclable, or compostable materials, and to make their products from at least 80% preferred materials, among other worthy goals. Their strong commitment to sustainability was recognised at the 2019 Australian Fashion Laureate, which awarded ELK their inaugural Sustainable Innovation Award.
ELK is an amazing Australian brand making impressive strides in their quest for sustainable practices. They’re leaders in innovation and transparency, providing an example for all fashion labels looking to become more ethical.
If you liked this article, you might like our feature about greenwashing and how to identify which brands are genuinely sustainable.