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What does Sustainability look like for Plus-Size?

December 18, 2019 10:35

The two German Plus Size bloggers Charlotte Kuhrt (@charlottekuhrt) and Christine Chlench (@chlencherei) are currently working on a passion-project, which will be launching next year. Out of their own frustration about the lack of high-quality and sustainable brands for plus size, the two ladies paired up and founded their very own sustainable fashion label for curvy women. For that, they combined their two names and created Lotta Chlench, with which they want to make a clear statement: “Sustainability shouldnʼt be a question of your size”.

Besides their occupations as bloggers, models, podcasters and in Chrisʼ case also mummy, they have now tried their luck with their own brand and they have accepted all the challenges, risks and joys that come with it.

One might say that this is yet another try to have a piece of the all so popular cake: sustainability. But shouldnʼt we be thankful for people, who try to raise a little more awareness towards sustainable alternatives? Especially clothing lines that offer wider size ranges tend to ignore this trend and although, slowly but surely, more and more labels are introduced to the market, Germany seems to be very much behind, as with many other things. The majority of sustainable plus-size labels have their roots in the US, UK, or Scandinavian countries. So, having a German approach to that matter seems a very enriching idea.

But what is it, that makes this brand so special? In an exclusive interview with TITLE, Charlotte Kuhrt gave us all the answers we needed to know:

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TITLE: What is so special about Lotta Chlench?

Charlotte: I think our uniqueness is characterized by our huge know-how about the desires of a fuller sized woman. We both profit from our experience within the fashion industry and our engagement with the community. In addition to that, we were involved in the design process and did not rely on existing shapes but designed our very own ones, so various body shapes can find a perfect fit within one piece. The items of our first collection are timeless and not necessarily trend oriented, but will hopefully increase our customers self-esteem. 

TITLE: How does your design process look like?

Charlotte: With every single piece, Chris and I start with a mood board and look for ideas that we are missing in other commercial labels. For us, it is important to create a piece of clothing women can fall in love with in every season and in every situation and that it fits many different type of bodies. This was a huge challenge, therefore honest feedback played a significant role in our design process and enabled us to integrate hidden elastic bands or wrap details for universal wearability. 

TITLE: Why do you think sustainability is so important?

Charlotte: The fast fashion industry is one of the biggest polluter, next to our irrational consumer habits. I think it is high time to change our behaviors and make more conscious decisions. That is simply because there is neither a plan B, nor a planet B.

TITLE: Why now?

Charlotte: With an increased consciousness about environmental problems, the need for sustainable fashion will be growing as well. This is why it is important to work internationally and the aim to reach every woman who wants to express herself and her beliefs with fair fashion.

TITLE: What kind of customer will be buying Lotta Chlench?

Charlotte: We want to address a women who wants to make sensible choices when shopping and who has, because of her size, limited access to such sustainable and fashionable possibilities. Lotta Chlench aims to be an alternative choice and also provides a platform on which women feel included and welcome. It has been way too long that the fashion industry has ignored fat women. We want to offer high-quality and sustainable plus-size fashion.

TITLE: What inspires you?

Charlotte: For me personally, Madeleine from dariadaria and her label dariadeh changed my way of thinking about fair fashion. When I discovered it, I knew that this should be a possibility for many, many more women out there. In addition to that, everyone we met during the establishment of Lotta Chlench, from our designer, to fitting models, to the production team, these are the people who truly want to be a part of this change and they are most inspiring to me.

TITLE: Where and how do you produce?

Charlotte: We produce in Porto, Portugal, with a family run business. There they pay a lot of attention to fair working conditions and the use of sustainable raw materials. Every item entails the fabric Lyocell (Tencel™), which is gathered from sustainably farmed forests. But also the choices of buttons, yarns, or packaging are made consciously with the whole team. And as said before, we wanted to create timeless pieces, so even the design aspect can be sustainable.

TITLE: When and where will your products be available?

Charlotte: For now we will be selling through our own online shop, starting in April 2020.