Good Krama is an ethical fashion label inspired by Cambodia’s most versatile textile: the krama. The krama is traditional silk or cotton scarf made of thousands of tiny squares that reflect the tumultuous history of Cambodia: a patchwork of contrasting hues, of darkness and light. They are a slow fashion label that produces high quality, versatile and trans-seasonal pieces. They blend cultural tradition with innovation by mixing handwoven fabrics with modern designs. The founder is an environmental economist who was keen to measure its impact and compare it to current industry standards.
While Cambodia is known for producing various fast-fashion garments, all of Good Krama’s new fabrics are woven in the rural Takeo Province of Cambodia. All of their silks are handwoven in the Takeo Province of Cambodia and work with various social enterprises. These enterprises prevent the ancient Cambodian traditions from vanishing and help to empower women living in rural areas and help to contribute to their economic development and financial independence. Their accessories are handcrafted by local artisans. Good Krama engages with a fair manufacturing studio in Phnom Penh that treats its employees fairly by providing them with a safe working environment. They offer benefits well above the minimum levels for garment workers in Cambodia and give staff opportunities for further learning and development. The team also visits their factories often and ensure they have a strong relationship.
They buy old, leftover, and over-ordered fabrics from local warehouses and reuse them instead of leading them to landfills. As they use deadstock, they can’t validate the exact fibre content but try to control all other fabrics they choose to work with. This includes silk, organic cotton, linen and bamboo among others. They repurpose all fabric scraps.
They try to integrate biodegradable and recyclable materials in all aspects of their production line. For instance, Good Krama opts for the greener solution when it comes to their tags, packaging and shipping materials. They also partnered with Eco Enclose, an American company that provides eco-friendly shipping solutions. So they use 100% recycled content poly mailers for shipping. Good Krama is proud to be growing towards a zero-waste initiative.
As all new fabrics are woven in a rural province of Cambodia, they do not use any electricity. The weaving villages operate with sunrises and sunsets with manual weaving machines. Thus resulting in zero carbon dioxide emissions. Most energy used in the studio is for lighting, sewing machines and using fans to beat the heat. Good Krama also takes into account the carbon dioxide impact of fabric transportation from the weaving villages and fabric warehouses to the studio, and then finally to the consumer. They educate the customer on how to wash their garments in a more eco-friendly manner. As the brand tracks the average water usage during their supply chain, they ensure no harm to the environment or people. The brand does not use any toxic dyes.
The brand values quality over quantity. By creating timeless pieces, they swim against the fast fashion current and reduce their overall production waste. As an attempt to democratise eco fair fashion, they price their garments fairly and aim to be 15 per cent to 20 per cent cheaper than most eco designers. They hope to be carbon neutral and enforce more creative zero-waste techniques into their design.