Our Sustainability Story
You can get kicked out of a Texas football game for a lot of things, but not having a clear handbag is probably not the most obvious option. Yet somehow, that’s what happened to our founder, Margo, and from this experience, the idea for Margo Paige was born!
Margo Paige was born out of a need for function - a clear handbag to attend sporting events, festivals, and concerts. But as a customer, when Margo looked into her options, she recalls feeling stuck between a fast-fashion option that she knew would fall apart quickly (and likely have terrible environmental and social impact) OR spend a few hundred dollars on a luxury handbag option. She couldn’t accept that those could be her only options, and Margo Paige was born to address this need.
Fast forward to today, and the concept of a “sweet spot” brand that prioritizes function, sustainability, and transparency still remains - expanded to a full suite of apparel and handbags options.
Get To Know Margo Paige:
Margo Paige designs and creates apparel and accessories for a sustainable, livable, seasonless closet. As busy women and customers ourselves, we understand firsthand that the way you buy your clothes and accessories, how they’re made, and how you use them are important pieces of a sustainable and holistic lifestyle.
We live multi-faceted, interesting lives and carry our values with us in our work, families, travel, and free time. We want products that reflect these lifestyles and our values, and don’t feel we should have to choose between them. Margo Paige designs and creates products that we want to use ourselves, products that aren’t limited in function as we transition between football games, airports, family time, business meetings, and couch-days.
In fashion, it sometimes feels like we have to make tough choices as customers. Do we want sustainability vs affordability? Stylish vs functional? Athletic vs formal? It feels like a narrative has been set up that we have to choose one or the other. This can lead to patterns of overconsumption, driving unnecessary waste in an industry that already doesn’t have the rosiest environmental impact (learn more about that here). It can also lead to communities of customers feeling out-priced from sustainability, as eco-friendly products can carry a premium.
Margo Paige was born to break this narrative and find the sweet spot we’re all looking for - a balance of sustainable and livable style, at a price point that won’t break the bank.
Learn more about our Founder’s take on building a sustainable, livable brand here.
What do we mean by SUSTAINABLE?
Sustainability is a broad term that can mean a lot of things. We take it literally - how can we sustain a business and a lifestyle without leaving a harmful impact behind us? As a fashion brand that creates products, Margo Paige acknowledges that there is an inherent impact in everything that we do. With that in mind, our goal is to reduce harm and increase positive impact in everything that we do - from the way that we manufacture products, to the way that we interact with our customers.
Here are some of the ways that we’re thinking about sustainability from the lens of Margo Paige:
- Product Standards - Margo Paige has developed a set of Product Standards that you can expect from any MP product you purchase. We keep our standards high and acknowledge there is always room to grow and improve.
- Materials - Margo Paige selectively chooses high-quality, eco-friendly materials that have a preferred environmental attribute, as well as high performance and durability qualities. We used environmentally certified materials, and test boundaries by bringing in innovative new fabrics that meet sustainable AND livable criteria. Learn more here.
- Manufacturing - Margo Paige believes that our supply chain partners should be held equal as important stakeholders in our brand, and we exclusively work with highly recommended suppliers that prioritize the ethics of their labor practices and their environmental impact. Learn more here.
- Slow Fashion - Margo Paige opts out of the current-day fast fashion industry. We prioritize timeless designs, patient new product development, and thoughtful manufacturing to minimize the negative impact that can come from wasteful fast fashion tendencies.
- Circularity - It’s not enough to create a product with eco-friendly materials and ethical manufacturing. Once a new product is created, it carries the risk of winding up in a landfill one day if we don’t consider its end-of-life ahead of time. Margo Paige partners with TerraCycle to run a product take-back program, offering our customers an opportunity to return their MP product at the end of its life to be recycled into something new. We use recycled materials to begin with, and offer recycling at end of life, with the goal of contributing to a truly circular supply chain. Learn more here.
What do we mean by LIVABLE?
We tend to live hard these days - constantly moving between work, social gatherings, high-intensity activities like concerts or exercise, and quiet time at home (when we’re lucky!). Margo Paige strives to create products that are comfortably and functionally livable regardless of the activities of the day ahead of you, and that keep you looking timelessly stylish at the same time.
At Margo Paige, Livability means:
- Timeless over Trends - In order to transition between multiple activities and intensities throughout your way, your wardrobe needs to be timeless and multifunctional, suitable for multiple occasions. By prioritizing timeless design silhouettes and not appeasing trends, your Margo Paige pieces will last a lifetime and look good the whole way.
- Accessible - Livability means your fashion expenses need to be in line with your lifestyle and finances. Sustainable and high-performance fashion should not be a premium, and we work hard to balance an accessible pricepoint with quality and eco-friendliness.
- Longevity - similarly to how we want to create a brand that is sustainable long-term, the products must follow suit. Terms like “durability” can sometimes feel like a workwear category, when in fact, it just means creating a high-quality product that can stand the test of your busy days over time. From a design, manufacturing, and materials selection standpoint, Margo Paige products are built to last.
What do we mean by SEASONLESS?
Check Out Our Product Standards
Learn More About the History of the Fashion Industry’s Environmental Impact
Browse Through Our Materials and Design Ethos
Dive Deeper Into Our Supply Chain
Learn The Lingo
Fast Fashion - Fast Fashion is the current “conventional” way of manufacturing and producing clothing and accessories. It prioritizes impossibly fast turnaround times for production, hitting immediate fashion trends in the market before they are gone, and charging low prices to the end consumer, making clothing and accessories feel disposable. These processes typically require over-ordering textiles and creating huge amounts of waste, utilizing harmful chemicals, and paying workers wages below the poverty line within potentially dangerous workplace environments.
Slow Fashion - Slow Fashion is the antidote to Fast Fashion. Slow fashion prioritizes timeless, trendless styles, high quality, durable materials, worker welfare and safety, and environmental considerations to create a product that takes longer to produce, but causes much less harm in the process. Slow fashion involves slowing down the production timeline so that there is less financial, resource, and time pressure on suppliers, which leaves room for higher quality, more durable, and more responsible product creation. This is a win-win for consumes and supply chain stakeholders, including workers and the environment.
Circularity - In fashion, circularity refers to the consideration of a product’s impact at all stages of its life cycle, with the end goal of reducing or eliminating waste that comes with making a product. Circularity programs can range from using second-life (such as recycled or repurposed) materials in the product design process, to considering the end-of-life plan for the product (resale, recycling, etc.).
Global Recycled Standard - The Global Recycled Standard (GRS) is a credible third-party certification facilitated by the Textile Exchange that verifies a material comes from pre or post consumer recycled sources. In addition, GRS requires that no harmful chemicals are used in GRS-certified materials, and that high social and environmental standards are in place around the material’s use.
Higg Index / Sustainable Apparel Coalition - The Higg Index is a measurement assessment facilitated by the Sustainable Apparel Coalition that brands or suppliers can voluntarily opt into to measure their social and environmental performance. This self-awareness and self-measurement is a key step towards improving social and environmental performance, and Margo Paige seeks suppliers that measure against this benchmark.
SMETA - The Sedex Members Ethical Trade Audit (SMETA) is the world’s most widely used social and ethics audit tool for responsible business practices. It’s a common tool for manufacturing partners to ensure they are upholding high standards of worker rights, safety, compensation and benefits, and broader social compliance and welfare. SMETA scoring is a useful tool for brands to evaluate the social performance of a potential supplier.
B Corp - B Corp is a voluntary business management certification that measures a company’s social and environmental performance. It is a rigorous certification process and offers a level of transparency and verification that businesses that hold the B Corp mark are socially conscious and environmentally responsible. B Corps believe that businesses can be a force for good for the planet for planet and people and profit.Value Chain - Similar to a supply chain, a value chain encompasses all of the stakeholders that are affected by a business, such as their manufacturing and factory partners, employees, customers, the natural environment, business advisors, the communities in which they do business in, and more. Considering a brand’s value chain is more comprehensive than just their supply chain, and considers all impacts that the business has.