We believe in the impact of value-based business and that your dollar creates powerful change.
Prior to launching, SOL VAE's founder Bridget worked with F500 corporations across 4 continents to advance their sustainability initiatives. The climate passion here runs deep. We've embedded into our core, and it's what keeps us motivated day-to-day.
We've structured our practice on two pillars: (1) Environmental (2) Social. Then, we look deeper at our carbon footprint, material tracing, and goals ahead.
We call it a practice because it feels like an ever-evolving way of thinking and living. We continually remind ourselves perseverance—not perfection—is the fuel of success.
Our styles are designed in Hawaii to timelessly outlive trends and serve multiple functions. Our lead pattern-maker has collaborated with Coach, Lululemon, Adidas and many more for trusted results. We use quality techniques and raw materials that last and support durable, versatile athletics and activities.
We utilize ECONYL® fiber, made in Italy and regenerated from fishing nets and other discarded waste materials. It's infinitely recyclable, certified to be harmless under OEKO-TEX Standard 100, produced at an SA8000 Standard certified factory for socially responsible labor, compliant with EU REACH chemicals management, and has 90% less impact than virgin nylon. We're currently researching the effects of newer biodegradable and bio-based fabrics, too.
Our designs are proudly developed, cut, and sewn in a factory we love visiting in Baltimore, USA. It was established in 1976, pays above Maryland minimum wage, and some sewers have been there more than 25 years. They utilize modern fabric cutters that minimize waste and have collaborated with Nike, Victoria's Secret, Under Armour, and countless more.
Our packaging mailer is 100% recycled, 100% recyclable, printed with algae ink, and from a woman-owned business in Colorado, USA. We keep our packaging sleek, minimal, and essential.
Use + Washing
A large portion of the environmental impact of clothing occurs after you take it home, which means there are small things you can do to make a big difference. Learn more about mindful washing and how to reduce microfiber pollution here.
End of Life
Repair, reclaim, resell, recycle. Learn more about the 4 R's here, and conveniently recycle your well-loved hybrid bras here with our amazing partners at the Bra Recyclers. We're currently looking into further recycling initiatives with our offcuts and look forward to keeping you updated as we grow.
From day one, we have never photoshopped the bodies in our photos. All images and words on our marketing channels are taken seriously and intended to be honest and/or science-based. Our Marketing Manifesto here shares more.
We take our time choosing business partners wisely—and with intuition. Each supplier is vetted according to an internal code of conduct. Please explore our Thoughtfully Curated rubric for deeper detail.
We are woman-owned and founded in our Hawaii hometown. 44% of our supply chain is currently woman-owned, and 22% of the total is owned by diverse women. We are actively looking to develop more sizes and enhance accessibility.
Bottom line: we generate emissions. So, we seek to take responsibility for what we create and address what we currently can't avoid. We track our carbon activity (similar to how we track our finances) and use measurement tools aligned with the WRI/WBCSD Greenhouse Gas Protocol to estimate our operational and supply chain emissions.
Scope 1 + 2
This category includes our estimates of direct fuel and electricity use. It currently accounts for 2.9% of our footprint. *annual 2021 data
This category includes all other indirect emissions we track and estimate via: materials, manufacturing, travel, freight, and waste. It currently accounts for 97.1% of our footprint. *annual 2021 data
Carbon Offset Practice
We address our measured and estimated emissions annually through supporting high-quality carbon offset projects with Native. Unfortunately, these are emissions we cannot yet avoid. For August 2022 to August 2023, we are supporting the Northern Great Plains Regenerative Grazing Project—validated under the Verified Carbon Standard, VM0026 Methodology for Sustainable Grasslands Management. This project restores ranchland ecosytems and drives soil carbon accruals. We chose a US project, as our manufacturing and all but one supplier are located in the US.
Online Order Shipping Emissions
We also partner with Sendle, a B Corp founded in Australia, to ensure our online order shipping emissions are addressed. The carbon footprint of each and every shipment is calculated. Then, third-party certified carbon offsets are purchased to support environmental projects. The carbon offset projects are located globally and support initiatives such as reforestation, conservation, clean technologies, and water treatment. You can view the current projects our customers help support here.
Ever read labels or ingredient lists? Us, too! We're passionate about finding innovative, sustainable, and versatile materials that perform. We also continually explore ways to reduce carbon emissions associated with transportation logistics. Below is a snapshot of where we currently source our materials and more. Some deeper detail may be mapped here on the Open Apparel Registry.
Goals + Initiatives
Our goals themselves have room to improve. We do not currently have concrete metrics, nor comprehensive reporting or timetables. Yet, we are experienced at aligning with leading industry frameworks—such as the UN SDGs below—and look forward to all the places we'll responsibly grow together.
We are a part of theEllen MacArthur Foundation Community. We're endlessly open to innovative materials and supply chain partners that deepen circularity, while maintaining quality and durability.
We invest in carbon offsets to address emissions we currently cannot avoid and seek ways to credibly reduce carbon and incorporate renewable energy as we grow. We appreciate the value of supply chain collaboration, and are currently seeking ways to credibly expand this conversation.
Reduce + Eliminate Waste
We are seeking structured methods and resources that enable our waste and used materials to be addressed or regenerated. We're starting this effort with a better system for our offcuts.
Our inaugural styles and inventory have a starting size range. We are refining it and excited to broaden our size library as we gain stronger fit feedback from our customers.
We want to shine light on the many ways people are beautiful and powerful. We continually aim for our words and imagery to represent what is real.
We are currently partially conformant to leading accessibility standards. We look forward to continually improving our online accessibility as we grow.