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A Conscious Spotlight: Blutsgeschwister

In a world where sustainability has become a buzzword, Blutsgeschwister stands out as a brand that truly embodies its principles. This vibrant and dynamic fashion brand is a shining example of  a sustainable fashion choice that doesn't compromise on style or individuality.

19 JULY 2023
To celebrate Otrium's 2022 Impact Report, we're shining the light on brands rated Conscious by Good on You. Through our collaboration with Good on You, a leading independent rating organization, we aim to empower our customers to shop responsibly. Good On You assess brands on three key areas, people, planet, and animal welfare. Together we've handpicked CLOSED, a brand that showcases its unwavering commitment to making an impact. 

Blutsgeschwister's Journey

Through an interview with Blutsgeschwister's CEO, we explore the heart and soul of the brand, shedding light on its journey towards sustainability, and their vision for a more conscious future. 
“Tell us a bit more about Blutsgeschwister?” 
Karin Ziegler, founder, head designer, and managing director co-founded the brand Blutsgeschwister in Stuttgart (Germany) on a sunny Ash Wednesday in the year 2001 with a handful of free spirits and visionaries. Fresh out of her studentship as a women's tailor, her mission was clear: unconventional, everyday wearable, and colorful fashion that brings joy, doesn't follow trends, and is worn with love – genuine favorite pieces, then as well as now. 
We create feel-good textiles that are highly wearable, matchable and easy to personalize. That’s  what clothing is all about: truly expressing yourself. Not just who you are as a person, but also how you‘re feeling right now. After all, you can only feel comfortable in your own skin and be YOUnique if you don‘t have to pretend. That‘s what our customers love about Blutsgeschwister. Stand up for yourself, and express yourself. Our clothes may have labels, but our customers definitely don‘t. 
“What is your role at Blutsgeschwister & what achievement are you most proud of? 
I am the CEO of the company. I have been working for the company for 12 years – it is wonderful  to contribute to seeing the company thrive. What we do is meaningful, makes our customers happy, brings colour to the world and is done in a sustainable and fair way. What job could be better? 
Since 2022 we are working with 100% sustainable materials, and we continue to have LEADER status at the Fair Wear Foundation. In 2016, we succeeded for the first time in achieving the highest membership status of "Leader", which we are proud to have maintained to this day. This  does not mean we are going to sit back and relax. There is still so much to do and to improve. We  set new goals for ourselves every year to achieve sustainable improvements in working conditions  in our value chain. 
The membership status of "leader" implies that Blutsgeschwister is recognized as a leading brand within the context of sustainable and ethical fashion. This designation means that we have demonstrated significant commitment and progress in terms of sustainability practices, fair working standards, and overall ethical conduct. It showcases our leadership role and sets us apart as an example for others in the industry to follow. 
Achieving 100% sustainable garments is a result of a dedicated and ongoing process at Blutsgeschwister. Over the years, we have made significant efforts to improve sustainability practices. This includes assessing and reducing the environmental impact of our production
processes, sourcing materials responsibly, and prioritizing ethical practices throughout the supply chain. 
We focus on choosing materials that are sustainable, such as organic cotton, recycled fabrics, or  other eco-friendly alternatives. Additionally, we value the durability and quality of the materials to  ensure longevity and reduce the need for frequent replacements. 
“What are you working on at the moment?“ 
We are working on the ongoing optimization of our production standards – other than that we choose different projects that help us improve further. At the moment we work on a project against gender violence. In India, we have a long-standing factory partner we have supported for years. Training on gender-based violence, on women's rights etc. is vital to help the employees grow. We sustain this process by enabling the factories to train their employees. 
CO2 neutrality is something that we are also working on. We are constantly switching over to sustainably produced raw materials. All garments are shipped to our customers via carbon-neutral DHL GoGreen. Our packaging materials (polybags) are made of recycled and recyclable polyethylene (LDPE). Our labels are now free of plastic and made from paper sourced from sustainable forestry (FSC certified). Our customer catalogue is printed in organic ink, made using renewable plant resources such as soya or linseed oil. 
Where do you see your brand in 5 years? And what are the biggest challenges on the roadmap? 
First of all, the biggest challenges lie within: logistical matters, cost increases, and interruptions in the supply chain. We want to continue to be a best-practice company. Our products have to be at the pinnacle – still transporting Blutsgeschwister details and outstanding design value. We will improve the life cycle of a product by different means – so we’re working on setting up a second-hand and preloved platform where customers can trade in their items that are still in good condition but no longer worn regularly. So, another person can be happy with a preloved item – that platform should launch in autumn 2023. Altogether, we aim and continue to be a true Love  brand.

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A Conscious Spotlight: CLOSED

To celebrate Otrium's 2022 Impact Report, we're shining the light on brands rated Conscious by Good on You. Through our collaboration with Good on You, a leading independent rating organization, we aim to empower our customers to shop responsibly. Good On You assess brands on three key areas, people, planet, and animal welfare. Together we've handpicked CLOSED, a brand that showcases its unwavering commitment to making an impact. Closed's JourneyIn the world of fashion, CLOSED stands out for its commitment to both style and making an impact. Established in 1978 by Marithé and François Girbaud, this brand has captivated conscious fashion enthusiasts with its premium jeans crafted in Italy. With a unique blend of European heritage, French creativity, Italian craftsmanship, and German tradition, CLOSED proudly embraces its diverse cultural influences, infusing each and every one of its products with a touch of multicultural excellence. Milestones and PracticesCLOSED's journey has been marked by remarkable achievements. A notable milestone occurred in 2018 when they introduced their eco-denim line, A BETTER BLUE. Since its inception, CLOSED has integrated ethical materials, gentle dyeing methods, and low-impact washing techniques into almost every pair of their jeans. The brand's commitment to environmental consciousness is evident at every step of the production process.Recognizing the significance of sustainable sourcing, CLOSED has made the switch to organic cotton for the majority of their essential products. Moreover, they have prioritized responsible production practices by ensuring that almost 90% of their items are manufactured in Europe. Through longstanding partnerships with European manufacturers, CLOSED upholds values of trust, quality, and sustainability. This approach not only reduces transportation-related carbon emissions but also ensures compliance with stringent European environmental and labour regulations.Looking Towards the FutureCLOSED's dedication to responsibility does not end with its current achievements. Over the next five years, the brand aims to elevate its conscious efforts even further by incorporating even more eco-friendly materials into their production processes. As proud members of the Fair Wear Foundation, CLOSED plans to diligently audit all production partners, ensuring the ethical treatment of workers and providing safe working conditions throughout their supply chain. For CLOSED, sustainability and fashion go hand in hand, as they strive to create long-lasting garments that transcend fleeting trends.Our PartnershipTo make a meaningful impact in the fashion industry, CLOSED has joined forces with Otrium, a platform that shares their vision of promoting enduring style and reducing waste. Otrium offers customers the opportunity to discover and enjoy CLOSED's timeless pieces, extending the lifespan of their garments and minimizing waste. The partnership aligns with CLOSED's belief in the longevity and quality of their products. Beyond the business aspect, CLOSED values the collaboration with the passionate individuals at Otrium, who share their dedication to making a difference in the fashion world.CLOSED has proven that fashion can be both stylish and responsible. With their European heritage, creativity, and craftsmanship, they have created a brand that resonates with conscious consumers. From their eco-denim line to their commitment to organic cotton and responsible production practices, CLOSED demonstrates their dedication to a better fashion industry. By partnering with Otrium, they extend the lifecycle of their garments and provide an opportunity for conscious fashion enthusiasts to embrace timeless style while contributing to a more sustainable future. 
"Otrium: Shaping the Future of Off-Price Fashion""" At Otrium, we are on a mission to revolutionize the off-price fashion industry, tackling the challenge of unsold inventory and ensuring that every piece of clothing finds its a a loving owner. Through our innovative technology, we have created a platform where over 400 brands can manage their excess stock, while providing fashion enthusiasts with incredible prices and an unparalleled selection. The Otrium Story: Our founders, Milan Daniels and Max Klijnstra, experienced firsthand the frustration of dealing with unsold inventory in their own sweater brand. Recognizing that this was a widespread issue, they embarked on a quest to find a better solution. Traditional methods fell short, inspiring them to create a tech-enabled marketplace. Otrium's Approach: Our approach empowers brands to open their own online outlet stores, granting them control over discounting, visibility, and merchandising. Through our platform, every garment is connected with its potential owner, optimizing conversion rates through dynamic pricing and refurbishment stations for damaged items. The Power of Polish & Match: At Otrium, we are dedicated to reducing unsold inventory, and our commitment is reflected in our Polish & Match approach. Each item that arrives at our warehouses undergoes meticulous review and enhancements to maximize its appeal. This includes professional photography, compelling product descriptions, and ensuring garments are in impeccable condition. Empowering Women and Embracing Equity: At Otrium, we don't just revolutionize fashion; we champion equality and inclusivity. With a team comprised of 53% women, including many women in leadership roles, we prioritize diversity and empowerment. We actively support initiatives advocating for gender equality in technology and digital education. A Smarter, Sustainable Fashion Industry: Otrium envisions a fashion industry where every piece of clothing produced serves its purpose: to be cherished and worn by a caring owner, eliminating waste and reducing fashion's environmental impact. By harnessing data-led technology and implementing sustainable practices, we are leading the way in transforming fashion into a more sustainable space. Otrium's journey to revolutionize the fashion industry and ensure that every garment fulfills its purpose sets an example for the entire industry to reevaluate its approach to overproduction. With our managed marketplace, tech-enabled platform, and unwavering commitment to sustainability benefit both brands and fashion lovers alike. By embracing equity, empowering women, and leveraging technology for positive change, Otrium is shaping a future where fashion is smarter, more inclusive, and sustainable. Together, we can create a world where every piece of clothing produced is cherished and worn with pride.
To celebrate Otrium's 2022 Impact Report, we're shining the light on brands rated Conscious by Good on You. Through our collaboration with Good on You, a leading independent rating organisation, we aim to empower our customers to shop responsibly. Good On You assess brands on three key areas, people, planet, and animal welfare. Today, we look into the captivating story of Alchemist, a conscious-rated brand that has been making waves in the fashion industry.A Journey of Impact and Ethical FashionAlchemist's story began 18 years ago when Caroline Mewe founded the brand with a vision to merge fashion and ethical business practices. Inspired by her upbringing on a small northern island in the Netherlands, Caroline believed that fashion could be both stylish and ethically made. Right from the start, Alchemist embraced environmentally friendly materials and ethical production practices, setting an example for the industry.With their eyes set on the future, the brand has set progressive goals for the next five years. They are determined to expand their conscious practices by incorporating more eco-friendly materials and striving for greater transparency in their supply chain. Alchemist actively engages in community initiatives and forms partnerships to promote responsibility in the fashion industry.  Alchemist's Achievements and Future GoalsAlchemist courageously introduced responsibility into fashion, combining beauty and ethics. By using environmentally friendly materials, reducing waste, and implementing ethical production practices, Alchemist set a new standard for conscious fashion. Today, they continue to push boundaries and challenge the status quo.Looking ahead, Alchemist aims to further improve their conscious practices by incorporating even more eco-friendly materials and production methods. The brand is committed to expanding supply chain transparency and ensuring the ethical sourcing of materials. They will actively engage in community initiatives and partnerships to drive conscious practices in the fashion industry. Our partnershipThe partnership between Alchemist and Otrium is a powerful force driving sustainable fashion forward. Alchemist leverages Otrium's advanced technology and marketing tools to efficiently manage inventory and reach a broader customer base. By collaborating with Otrium, Alchemist avoids excess inventory and respects minimum order quantities, demonstrating their commitment to social responsibility and fairness. Moreover, Otrium's platform elevates Alchemist's brand visibility, attracting conscious consumers and promoting responsibility. This partnership goes beyond numbers and sales—it is about making a genuine impact and driving positive change within the industry.Otrium's technology and marketing tools enable Alchemist to effectively manage inventory and connect with new customers, reducing waste and maximising revenue. The increased exposure and brand awareness among a larger customer base contribute to Alchemist's impact. Otrium's marketing and promotional efforts drive traffic and sales to Alchemist's products. By relying on Otrium's expertise in selling excess stock, Alchemist can focus on their core business activities while reaching a broader audience. Alchemist's extraordinary journey exemplifies the transformative power of sustainability in the fashion industry. With a fearless combination of fashion and ethics, they inspire others to challenge the norms and embrace responsible practices. Together with Otrium, Alchemist shapes a future where conscious business practices and style coexist harmoniously, proving that fashion can be both. 

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