Gudrun Sjödén has created sustainable garments for more than 35 years with contrasts and surprising combinations.
“Nothing should ever be indifferent or mediocre. Colourful stripes and mixtures of patterns, clothes you can mix and match whatever the season, functional unique designs that won’t date, fashion for women of all ages, shapes and sizes. All in the purest of natural materials and with an unmistakeable emphasis on sustainable Scandinavian design. These are the key concepts behind fashion designed by Gudrun Sjödén.
In many ways you could say that I design clothes for myself. I like colourful clothes with individuality that tell people something about your lifestyle. My aim is to spread happiness and make the everyday a little more beautiful. To me, creating clothes is about adding colour and creating shape around a personality. A garment is not an isolated object – it has a context. I think that creating designs with a long lifespan is my most important contribution to a greener, more wonderful world. It has been my passion and mission for more than 35 years.”
Textiles are the medium for my creativity. Nature gave us humans the little cotton plant with its soft pods, and the grazing sheep with their thick fleeces, which they don’t need in the summer.
We learned to turn the long fibres of the linen plant into yarn, which can be woven into fabric. And in faraway China people discovered that in every cocoon, the tiny silk worm spins shiny threads, hundreds of metres long, which we humans can weave into clothes. In our modern times we also manufacture fabrics with the help of cellulose (wood fibres) to make viscose. We extract oil from the earth and create man-made fibres, which these days we sometimes recycle, thank goodness! I prefer to stick to natural materials that grow and can be used as part of an ecologically sustainable society.
To me, creating clothes is about adding colour to and creating shape around a personality. But clothes need to be practical too, allowing you to move, keeping you warm or cool and making it easy for you to look after them. A garment is not an isolated object – it has a context. It reflects its time, cultural tradition, and the person wearing it as well as the person who has created or designed it. The clothes I create are also designed to make the woman wearing them happy with herself. People around her should appreciate the clothes too and remember the woman wearing them. Maybe they will also understand the signals the clothes transmit about her lifestyle and social status.
By sustainable design, we mean that:
– We choose good textile materials
– We look for timeless, functional designs
– We look for timeless, functional designs
– We strive for sustainability over time
– We want to be a good example
– We want to practise what we preach
– We believe that many small steps will lead us to big results
93% of products are currently made from sustainable materials
“We aim to have as many of our products as possible produced in an environmentally-friendly way, not just a limited and exclusive line.
Over the years, my commitment to sustainable design and the inspiration I draw from nature’s flora and fauna have been my guiding principles. Over the decades, environmental awareness has evolved and gone in and out of fashion. From the 80s when eco-friendliness was tentative and virtually impossible, through the 90s when we launched our first organic collection, to today when green choices are obvious. We believe that small steps will lead to great results. That’s why we are working tirelessly to increase the number of environmentally sound products in our collections.
In a forest of eco-labelling systems, we felt that having our own label would make it easier for our customers to find their way around our collections. In 2008, we created our very own Leaves eco-label. Here in 2017, the time has come for an update, given all the new developments in the field of sustainability around the globe. Next to each garment representing an eco-friendly choice, you’ll now be seeing the following symbols, in a system we call Gudrun’s Good Guide.
GUDRUN’S GOOD GUIDE
Gudrun’s Good Fibres
These items are made entirely or partly from a material grown and produced with sustainability in mind. The fibres and materials we rate as good environmental options are organically grown, recycled fibres, naturally retted flax, Tencel® lyocell, Lenzing Modal®, silk, alpaca, vegetable tanned and dyed leather along with wood and rubber. We impose requirements for transparency and we audit the manufacturer’s certification.
Gudrun’s Good Manufacturing
These products are manufactured entirely or largely at audited factories geared to the best possible production processes for the external environment and human health. We make strict requirements for all the influential processes in the manufacturing to be certified, in some cases all the way to the stitching factory. Our manufacturing is certified to standards such as GOTS, Fairtrade and STeP by OEKO-TEX.
Gudrun’s Good Deed
These items are sold in aid of various charitable causes.