Bespoke uniform creation has always had sustainable roots and counts itself as one of the leading lights in the clothing industry, due to two inherent factors.
Firstly, making our garments to order delivers zero waste. Our mills only produce enough fabric for the client’s uniform order, leaving no surplus stock.
The second lies in the garment usage. Typically high quality uniform is made to be worn several times a week for over 18 months. Compare that with fast fashion where garments are expected to be worn up to 6 times on average.
Over the years Studio 104 has built upon these strong sustainable pillars with many smart environmentally-focussed advancements, and has led to our 8-step ‘Future Friendly Uniform’ approach, that spans across design, manufacture, materials, delivery and much more.
Below are the highlights of our proprietary approach and please feel free to contact us for further detail.
Our skilled team always offer designs that allow for a broader range of staff to fit fewer garment sizes, reducing the amount of unused stock.
We also aim to include innovative ideas that can aide the interchange / combination of garments, enabling a smaller range of designs to span across a variety of client roles.
We ensure all fabrics are sourced in a responsible manner, whether that is a closed loop material, which is or can be recycled, or raw materials from sustainable businesses - for example cotton mills that contribute to the Better Cotton Initiative.
Regular attendance of the key fabric fairs in London & Paris has ensured that we always remain at the forefront on innovation. We also now promote alternative raw materials from renewable sources that have become more affordable like Lyocell, which uses 80% less water to manufacture.
All of our fabric and clothing factories are selected as a result of their proximity to each other as well as the garments end destination - the client - thus reducing our transportation carbon footprint. Therefore clients based in Europe we focus all manufacturing in the region reducing travel whilst improving quality.
We also aim to consolidate shipments keeping air freight to a minimum.
We regularly carry out audits of our partner factories to make sure they support the highest levels of worker conditions and salaries, as well as using positive environmental initiatives. For example - waste water treatment, in-house recycling and renewable power (solar, wind, etc.).
We also look to partner factories who are BLUESIGN approved, an independent authority on sustainable textile manufacturing.
We work with clients to assess their staffing volume and combine that with our technical team’s extensive knowledge of global body-size data, to accurately estimate fabric usage to the nearest centimetre.
All of our clients’ uniform is made-to-order, including the recently launched 104 Collection, therefore our mills are only asked to produce enough fabric for each project, leaving zero surplus stock.
New uniform is a considerable cost for clients, therefore keeping their garments free from damage during transport, in our warehouse and onsite with clients, is of utmost importance.
We are now proud to offer our completed client orders using recycled polybags and garment shrouds, as well as hand individual staff their uniform post-fitting, in FSC approved paper bags.
One of the best examples of sustainability centres around the level of usage of every garment we create for clients. As a principal point, compared with fast fashion where garments are expected to be worn up to 6 times on average, a typical uniform is made to be worn several times a week for over 18 months.
The long life built into our uniforms is due to the high quality, high design and high specification, setting our sector apart in an otherwise problematic industry.
The final way we look to affect environmental change is within our studio and head office in Central London. So far, Studio 104 has recycled 60,000 tonnes using the First Mile Recycling scheme, covering business waste.
To reduce clothing going to landfill, which on average totals £140m per year in the UK, our wearable samples are donated to charity. Un-wearable garments are recycled along with fabric waste, and leftover materials are donated to We Are Waterloo, our local business and community support service.