Open Apparel Index
Alchemist is an ethical, fair, and luxury clothing brand. It has managed to produce luxury garments with more sustainable materials and hip styles. This combination makes the Dutch brand a standout name in the clothing industry.
The garments Alchemist produces are made to wear through different seasons. Never following the latest trends, always designing for high-quality garments. This starts with the choice of materials. The brand offers a rather wide product range for which it also uses a vast range of materials. This indicates that a lot of thought and care goes into creating an Alchemist garment and that the designers experiment with choosing the best fabrics they can find for their garments.
While most of its materials are in the class that we define as sustainable, there is room for improvement on this topic as well. The brand uses some BCI cotton which it could swap for a larger percentage of organic cotton for example. It can and should also completely phase out conventional polyester. Alchemist is however also using RPET and only uses a very small percentage of virgin polyester. Honestly, this is just us being pretty nitpicky since most brands advertise BCI cotton as the best thing since sliced bread. Most of its materials are organic cotton, Lyocell, and Ecovero, which have a significantly lower footprint than average. Also, the bulk of what the brand uses is certified externally by GOTS, GRS, or Lenzing.
Alchemist moved a large chunk of its production to Europe. This allowed them to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and keep control of a more ethical supply chain. At the moment about 80% of production takes place in Portugal. A small percentage takes place in India and all suppliers the brand works with have at least one social certification.
Alchemist is a luxury brand and does use animal materials like merino and sheep wool. These are not always certified, but the brand is addressing this by aiming for 100% certified animal materials. Be aware that the winter collection is not vegan, but most summer pieces are.
Most other aspects of Alchemist are taken care of in a sustainable manner. Packaging, transportation, energy consumption, and other elements are being addressed. What's cool about Alchemist is that they are very critical about how they work. The team does not hesitate to be honest and open-minded in looking for improvements. The brand makes sure to be part of challenges and initiatives that arise within the industry. Registering for the Open Apparel Industry in 2019 where you can keep track of every factory they work with is something worth noting. They are also willing to communicate the points they want to work on, which is something that every brand should do! The first step to improvement is recognizing what can be improved. This is one element of sustainability that Alchemist does very well.
All in all, this is an exemplary brand with high standards and accountability for every aspect of its production process. An alchemist's goal is to turn ordinary objects into gold. The Alchemist brand is doing its part to turn an often polluting, harmful, and unfair industry into a force for good.