How Sustainable is Pavilion Parade?
When I first set up Pavilion Parade as a separate entity in 2020 at the height of the global pandemic my ambition was to create a small business that prioritised sustainability and a 'mimimum harm' model that could sit alongside my creative desire to make uniquely beautiful garments with a luxuriously bohemian aesthetic.
The accepted mantra for a sustainable way of doing business is Reduce, Reuse, Recycle .....and only then mitigate, and this is what I've tried to bear in mind when working out a practical and socially responsible way forward for this nascent venture.
The studio runs entirely on 100% renewably generated elecricity via Ecotricity, Britain's greenest energy company. They re-invest their income into building new forms of renewable energy generation rather than paying stockholder dividends, so the more that people switch to them then the more renewable energy generation infrastructure gets created. Our heating is via efficient night storage heaters, which is considered a lower carbon form of heating as it only charges from the grid at night rather than the daytime, when high demand means a higher likelihood of carbon-heavy gas generated electricity is powering the grid.
My longstanding love for antique and vintage textiles made it an obvious choice to use this wonderful resource to create our collections. They are sourced from a carefully curated network of individual textile dealers from Europe and beyond. I don't bulk buy textiles on consignment. Each antique fragment or vintage length is individually sourced and bought with a specific purpose or garment in mind, so this avoids the wastage of any surplus unused textiles....everything I buy gets used.
Obviously there is a green cost to sourcing textiles from overseas ( and also selling and therefore shipping internationally), and that is the environmental impact of transport. I am not sure how confident I am in the claims of various global shippers that they can deliver in a carbon neutral way, so I mitigate each order with an automated donation to our green partner Ecologi to fund tree planting in gold standard re-forestation projects around the world. These projects are managed and run in partnership with local communities to maximise other benefits such as reduction of coastal erosion, protection of habitat and biodiversity, provision of fairly waged local employment etc, in addition to the sequestration of atmospheric carbon in the medium to long term.
In addition to the direct order-related donations, we also have a monthly subscription to Ecologi to mitigate against any other currently unavoidable environmental running costs. This monthly subscription is used to help fund various green international initiatives, such as peatland restoration in Indonesia, methane capture to generate energy in India, wind power projects in Thailand, and solar power generation in Vietnam.
I chose Ecologi as our green partner after a lot of research and careful consideration....the last thing I wanted to do was sign up to a mitigation provider to find out later that they were planting mono-culture conifer plantations on fertile Welsh farmland (for instance). Carbon off-setting has become a big business now, and as with all big businesses it doesn't take long for the vultures to circle, so it is essential to do one's due diligence.
You can find out more about the Pavilion Parade green partnership on our business profile on the Ecologi site here.