Apparel that nurtures customers, workers and the environment

Concept to Watch: Hope & Henry’s mission delivers sustainable, affordable fashion

Ecofriendly apparel brand Hope & Henry owes its mission to a televised documentary expose about the fast-fashion industry. That 2015 documentary, “The True Cost,” focused on the harmful results from businesses enabling the poor treatment of factory workers, ignoring the negative impacts of using chemicals and pesticides to grow cotton, and selling cheap disposable fashion that winds up in landfills.

Matt and Marina McCauley, top executives at Gymboree who retired in 2012, were inspired to create a retail business that nurtures the earth, protects its resources and reinforces the values of community — all while becoming profitable.

They drew together family and friends to invest “sweat equity” in creating a business model that could “maximize the use of organic cotton and recycled fibers,” Matt says. “We care about the environment and want to make high-quality affordable products while sharing profits with the women that sew our clothes.”

To keep costs down, the McCauleys self-funded inventory and operations and forewent a corporate office; all corporate employees telework. Hope & Henry is certified through the Global Organic Textile Standard and partners with GOTS-certified factories overseas.

“Our customers value the special details and quality fabrics in our products,” Matt says. “We built a business model that allows us to deliver special details and quality fabrics at compelling prices. We are thrilled that our customers are responding so positively to our mission and our products.”

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