Slow Fashion Sweaters: It’s Sweater Weather
Here in southern New England, temperatures dipped into the 40s last night. My wardrobe is still packed with t-shirts and lightweight denim, but I woke up this morning determined to begin the great fall transition, unpacking sweaters and long sleeve shirts from under-bed storage in preparation for the cooling days ahead.
Since this blog has been in business since January 2013, I like to look back over old posts (there are 1,000 of them!) before creating new content, on the off chance there’s a similar guide just waiting for an update. I was surprised to discover I didn’t have a post dedicated to ethical, sustainable, or slow fashion sweaters!
For me, sweaters must meet at least these three criteria:
- Be comprised of predominantly natural fibers, like wool, cotton, or cashmere.
- Feel relatively lightweight on my body (after all, they’re just one of many winter layers)
- Be relatively easy to care for (for instance, they don’t pill a lot, droop with time, or require dry cleaning)
The slow fashion sweaters in this post find the balance between natural fibers, labor ethics, price point, and maintenance, in an effort to provide items that don’t exploit others while becoming staples in a long term wardrobe.
Price Ranges: $ = under $75; $$ = under $150; $$$ = over $150 // This post contains affiliate links.
12 Brands that Carry Slow Fashion Sweaters
Ethical Sourcing + Natural Fibers
1 | ABLE
XS-XL. ABLE publishes their wages across production, and prioritizes the wellbeing of women. $$+
2 | Naadam
XXS-XXL. Naadam works directly with their herders, and ensures that suppliers pay a living wage. High quality, “heavenly soft” cashmere and loungewear. $+
3 | Tradlands
XXS-2XL. Prioritizing high quality fibers, production, and finishes, Tradlands produces in audited factories, making products built to last. $$$
4 | Patagonia
XS-XL. Patagonia has some of the most robust sustainability initiatives in the fashion world. The above sweater must made with recycled cashmere. $$-$$$
5 | People Tree
S-L. Made in fair trade coops in Nepal and India, People Tree has been in the fair trade clothing business for nearly 30 years. $$$
6 | Tonle
XS-XXL. Fair trade and nearly zero waste, Tonle’s sweaters are appliqued and woven using fabric leftover from other production. $-$$
7 | Made Trade
XS-XL (varies by brand). A marketplace for artisanal ethical goods. $-$$$
Natural Fibers (More Budget Friendly)
8 | Everlane
XXS-XL. Made with predominantly natural fibers, Everlane’s sweater collection is high quality, but not as ethical as the above options. $-$$
9 | LL Bean
XS-XL. Known for their excellent quality, LL Bean’s sweaters are built to last, though not verifiably ethical. $
10 | Madewell
XXS-3X (depending on style). Check for cotton, wool, and cashmere options from this quality brand. $-$$
11 | J. Crew
XXS-3X. Check for cotton, wool, and cashmere options. $-$$
Learn more about choosing ethical wool here.