Since the very beginning of the brand, the value of making timeless pieces in natural fabrics has been our philosophy. The concept of having as few garments, and garments that can be used for many occasions and generations has always been the focus since Cathrine Hammel’s very start in 1997. This has always been our core values, and will continue to be so.
These days we are focusing to make smaller collections, have fewer qualities, and work with fewer suppliers to have better control of our supply chain and the qualities we use. We see this as necessary to be able to meet our own requirements for a sustainable clothing production.
We have stable supplier relations and has worked with 90% of our suppliers since the very beginning 23 years ago, and focus on a long-term relationship with the suppliers.
We do not have open factory list, but we are working on how to communicate about our supply chain on our website, to ensure that our customers and public can find the information they need about how our clothes are made.
Most of our woven clothing is produced with Michael in China, with some exceptions. We also work with one factory in Italy and one in Portugal, but it is Michael we work most closely with. We have built up a good, loyal cooperation over 20 years and eventually know each other very well, so it is natural that we work mostly with him. We know what we get and how his little factory works.
We make knitted garments with Ning which Cathrine have worked with since she was 23 years old, so it will actually be 27 years of cooperation. Ning is also based in China, and again, these are people we know we can trust.
In addition to Michael and Ning, we work with Neeti in New Delhi, India. Cathrine has worked with Neeti and her husband Raman as well for 27 years now. They have a small sewing room and now produce just for us. We have become good friends over the years, and help each other as best we can. Neeti makes all our tulle.
We are loyal and faithful to our suppliers, as we know that they are as dependent on us as we are on them. We are proud of and happy with our partners. We have tried to move new projects to Europe, but with very little success, same prices, but for poor follow-up and service.
The Cathrine Hammel team has been visited our suppliers every year prior to Covid-19.
– Our merino wool is traceable ZQ certified from South Africa. See their website for more information: https://www.discoverzq.com/values
– The kid mohair we use contains only mohair from audited farms in South Africa which complies with the mohair industry sustainable guidelines.
– Our wool has been declared non-mulesed with South African origin.
– Our recycled polyester is made from ECO CIRCLE™ FIBERS made by ECO CIRCLE™ recycling system.
– In 2019 we developed in India our own Econyl® regenerated nylon tulle fabric from broken fishnets and other nylon waste, which is used in the production 2020. The yarn was manufactured at Aquafil S.P.A, owners of Econyl®, factory in Slovenia. Then the yarn was imported to India, so our supplier could knit the spools of thread into tulle fabric. See their website for more information: https://www.econyl.com
We have come a long way with sourcing certified materials and we will continue this work onward, always trying to find the best solutions for our qualities.
We also became member of Ethical Trade Norway in October 2018. As we know the main challenge in the work for ethical trade is to have sufficient transparency and traceability in the supply chain, we have chosen Ethical Trade Norway for their competence and resources as a support in our long-term work for ethical trade.