Towards our People:
> Women empowerment, gender equality & economic growth in our communities
> Fair trade with our weavers & garment makers
> Inclusive hiring process & flexible working hours
> Cultural representation
UN SDG: Goal 5 & Goal 8
Towards our Planet:
> Biodegradable fabrics chosen based on their scientifically calculated carbon, water & land footprint.
For eg: while cotton may be a natural fibre, its high water footprint (2120 litres for every kilogram) and high pesticide consumption does not make it a sustainable fibre
> Zero synthetic fibres such as acrylic, polyester & nylon that not only release microfibres which cause water pollution and have high carbon footprints but their production also depends heavily on non renewable energy resources of oil & coal- industries notorious for worker exploitation.
> Traceable & transparent supply chain
> Advocacy for climate action
UN SDG: Goal 12
Towards our Process:
> Our collections are designed for timeless style and start with made-to-order production to gauge demand in order to reduce wastage and dead-stock
> An unsold finished goods policy where we upcycle unsold goods
UN SDG: Goal 12.
Our Fabric Standards
Better materials: Handloom Ahimsa/ Peace silk, handloom organic cotton, machine woven organic cotton, Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified viscose
Conventional cotton. We discontinued production of conventional cotton sarees in December 2020 but some percentage is used as lining material. Synthetic materials may find use in zippers, ties and other accessories.
*Based on total yardage used during Q4 (January-March) 2023.
We researched and developed the first-ever Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) for our handloom Peace silk. Carbon footprint was calculated at 0.62 kg of CO2.
Peace or Ahimsa silk
The flagship material in our creations is the Eri, Ahimsa or Peace silk. Eri silk is the local name of a non-violent silk that is indigenous to the North East Region. Unlike other types of silk such as Mulberry and Tasar where the cocoons are boiled with the silkworms still inside, Eri silk is extracted from cocoons after the silkworms have emerged. This cruelty-free nature has given it the names of Peace silk or Ahimsa silk.
A traditional skill, the cocoons are usually spun by hand into yarn which gives it a linen-like texture with a slight sheen. The silk is comfortable to wear as it becomes softer with use and is ideal for day or night wear in any weather. Just like any other delicate fabric it requires careful usage and maintenance to ensure its long-term durability.
Our handspun, handwoven and naturally dyed Eri silk sarees & scarves are a 100% sustainable option with a timeless quality that can be worn by anyone, anywhere.
Cotton and Organic cotton
Cotton is a natural fibre that is one of the most well-known fabrics in the world. India is the leading producer of cotton in the world but scarily, cotton is also one of the most damaging crops. Water intensive and fertiliser intensive that depletes all the natural nutrients of the soil, cotton production has led to droughts and farmer suicides in India. The alternative, organic cotton, that is cotton grown using natural fertilisers uses 91% less water than r cotton. Although growing, production of organic cotton comprises just 1% of total cotton production as it takes time for the soil to heal from the harsh fertilisers. Farmers find it difficult to wait the 3 years that it takes for the soil to be left untouched in order to regenerate. This lower supply makes organic cotton more expensive and in some cases unavailable for various uses.
Our Peace silk- cotton blend handloom fabric uses conventional cotton due to the unavailability of organic cotton for use. Apart from this collection, Arras does not encourage use of conventional cotton and uses organic materials sourced from certified suppliers.
Our fabric suppliers
> A&A Eco Products, New Delhi
> GBM Fabrics, Surat
> Weaver communities across India