How to Influence The Fashion Industry?

Alyssa Flynn, Montreal Canadien’s Wife, Urges Others to Shop More Consciously

“Excuse me, is this tomato organic?” I overhear a woman ask at the grocery store the other day, which I have to smile about because a) she is me and b) it means that with one question she is changing an industry and doesn’t even know it.

Food habits are some of the hardest routines for us to shift away from because of these three reasons:

1) emotional attachment

2) family traditions

3) taste

Yet what I am seeing more and more these days is that people are asking questions about where their food comes from, how it is grown, and if it is organic.  I am seeing people cutting back on sugar, eating less processed foods, even less animal products (yay!) and generally becoming concerned about what exactly they are putting in their bodies.

And in response, organic local wholesome food companies are thriving, challenging those ultra-powerful billion-dollar corporations. This is a good thing, people. This is great. I have hope.

However, the revolution I care even more about, and truly think is its only in its infancy, especially for the millennial generation, is this one:

A woman walks into a clothing store, scans the inside of a top that caught her eye when she walked in. She looks around for a tag hoping that it doesn’t read “wool,” “leather” or “fur.”

When it doesn’t, she looks to the salesperson and says, “Excuse me, do you know where this garment was made?” She googles the brand to ensure the clothing was produced in a facility using humane labour and eco-friendly manufacturing practices. If it says “made in Canada,” she smiles.

And just like that, she is changing the fashion industry.

It is because we aren’t exactly “there” yet that I founded my company and clothing line, Saved Kisses this year to make it easy for people to have those exact questions answered. Because maybe they are questions they didn’t even know they were supposed to be asking yet.

Since my husband plays hockey in this great city of Montreal, I am able to use those “hockey season” months to work with a very talented seamstress and her studio’s sewing team here to carefully select fabric and create my samples that then get sent to LA to be produced.

Locally and sustainably produced, Saved Kisses not only guarantees to save animals lives but also factory workers’ lives, and ultimately the planet’s life.

You don’t have to search around to decide if Saved Kisses is being humane or animal-friendly; it is all right there in front of you. We even take it a step further and allow you to donate to one of our animal rescue partners upon checkout; when you “add an animal” you get to choose which animal you want to help save.

Over 200 million animals a year are exploited at the expense of fashion, beauty, and the entertainment industry and most people have little to no idea about this fact.

These are animals that look just like our dogs and cats at home that snuggle up to us on the couch- animals who we know can feel pain and emotion- yet just because they can’t physically speak out to defend themselves, these industries are constantly taking advantage of them.

And we can change that.

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Currently, I am only producing Saved Kisses summer collections so I have provided some of my favorite brands for other lifestyles (like freezing Montreal winters) that guarantee animal love and humane production:

Stella McCartney – for luxury handbags

Matt & Nat – for functional bags & shoes

Reformation – for sustainably-produced dresses & tops (not all 100% animal friendly so choose wisely)

Freedom of Animals – for stylish handbags designed by actress Nikki Reed

Kanuk – for an alternative to a Canada Goose (made with polyester filling instead of goose down, just make sure to ask for a fur-free hood!)

Brave Gentlemen – for men’s shoes, belts, and suits

Wully Outerwear – for jackets

Patagonia – for warm parkas

Since the market for animal-friendly options is still fairly small (but growing), don’t be too hard on yourself. You can’t replace your wardrobe overnight, but any small change you can make to your everyday shopping habits will help animals everywhere.

As a lifetime lover of fashion even I am still finding some difficulties in transitioning to a more mindful wardrobe. Just make sure you continue to ask questions, to challenge what stores see as “normal,” and to celebrate the small steps you make.

Together, who knows – maybe over time, we could change an entire industry.

Xx
For the animals,
Alyssa

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To learn more about Saved Kisses, see video.