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Empowering Women Through Fashion

By Carolina Soares

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There is no doubt that the fashion industry has its reputation damaged whenever there is a public complaint of an illegal or unethical work. On the other hand, we must recognize the existence of noble initiatives in this sector: many companies not only provide adequate working conditions but also go beyond, developing projects to help disadvantaged minorities.

We selected here 7 fashion companies that develop initiatives focused on women in precarious situations and prove that the sustainable concept of mutual help is extremely important on these days.



The mission of FashionABLE is to create jobs for African women, giving them the chance to overcome poverty, so that they are not dependent upon charity. They have a two-fold strategy: to help women start small businesses and to associate with manufacturers that can hire the women with fair wages and ethical practices. On the webpage is possible to buy beautiful scarves and leather garments, besides knowing the history of the women involved on this project.

raven + lily

Raven + Lily

The brand Raven + Lily was born from two common passions of its founders: fashion and ethnic design. Then, they had the idea of ​​turning these two themes of interest in a project to help women. Today, they employ artisans from Ethiopia, India, Cambodia, Quenia and United States. In their website is possible to look the clothes produced in each country and feel the identity of each location.


This German atelier devotes special attention to women living in India – native country of its founder. They are trained to produce silk and to be direct providers of this product. Besides gaining a new life perspective, the artisans also feel more confident and contribute to the social development of the country.

krochet kids

Krochet Kids

Created by three brothers, Krochet Kids personally employs women from deprived areas of Peru and Uganda. They work making clothes and accessories for a fair wage, what help them to surpass poverty. It is worth to mention a nice aspect of the brand: all the clothes carry the signature of its author, creating recognition, uniqueness and a link with the buyer.

31 bits2

31 bits

The project of this accessories’ brand help Ugandan women to get out of poverty, maximizing creative abilities and generating opportunities for sustainable livelihoods. Besides working to 31 bits, they also have English and business classes. Another interesting fact: the accessories developed by artisans – full of color and personality – are made ​​from recycled paper.


Open Arms

This clothing manufacturing company is committed to help refugee women living in United States to break the cycle of poverty by earning a reasonable wage that allows them to maintain their family. The workers make delicate and feminine clothes, sold in hundreds of retail stores. You can read here  the refugees’ stories and perceive the change of life they have had with this project.

kate spade2

On purpose by Kate Spade 

A nice project of a famous brand:  Kate Spade has recently launched the On Purpose accessories collection, made by 150 women of Rwanda. The idea of the project is to empower women to become suppliers of the brand, and then replicate this model in other underserved communities.

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About The Carolina Soares

Coolhunter & PR

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