Experts Talk – How to Wear Sustainable Fashion for Your Business Meeting

K.I.S.S. – Keep it simple and smart is the key message of Josephine’s Coaching Club. This is Fashion which is combinable for work and leisure and sustainable in material and with long-lasting quality. In this blog, brands fulfilling these criteria and creating inspiring business outfits, get a platform to spread their message. This time, the amazingly talented team of Oramai London introduces to us why 100% GOTS certified organic linen is their must-have for a business meeting all year around and why we should consider it in our next meeting as well.

What is the story behind your brand? 

Coming from different backgrounds (investment banking and luxury fashion) we realised how much waist there is in this industry. The true cost of a dress does not only lie in the negative externalities of the production process, but it reaches all the way to the huge amount of capital spent on marketing. Our own anecdotes spans from multiple of experiences; Inga travelling through India in 2007 visiting production facilities of companies like H&M and Isabella experiencing how a dress needed to be flown last minute on a private jet for the Oscars in LA. 

Finance meets Fashion: Isabella & Inga

It’s interesting, as neither of us have never been big consumers of fast fashion, instead, we were always obsessed with quality. Equally in this category of fashion, experiencing bad quality, at high prices, produced in terrible conditions with huge waste in marketing budgets and the big mark-up model of wholesale; we saw a place for sustainable luxury, locally produced with quality craftsmanship delivered directly to the consumer. Oramai was born. 

Linen is your signature material – why did you choose linen and which other material would you recommend for a sustainable ” business” shopper? 

Having grown-up in the country side with a deep appreciation of nature, we both wanted to work with the most natural, organic material we could find. For those who don’t know, linen is fantastic; it grows in areas naturally full of water, locally in Europe, no pesticides are needed and it is very durable. It’s a material that – in itself – is very sustainable. We take this even further, working with GOTS certified organic linen. This way we could achieve long lasting quality in the most environmentally friendly way possible.

Even though we think linen is the best fabric out there, we celebrate all innovations within the garment industry. We love all organic fabrics, fabrics made out of by-products and the new technology creating vegan leather. However, even here, the consumer needs to look deeper to really understand the true externalities of its production. It’s not easy… and that’s why we love linen. For a recommendation, I would ask everyone to support smaller sustainable businesses who are innovating new fabrics and breaking the old business model. It’s so important that we break old habits and keep pushing innovation forward, otherwise there won’t be any change. 

Linen trousers keep you cool in summer and warm in winter with a low carbon footprint

Your brand is sustainable and locally produced – why is this important to you? 

Local production is important for reducing our carbon footprint. We also support a group of all female seamstresses, locally in London, helping our local community. It’s also very helpful for quality control, especially in the early stages of our business. We know we will always do our sampling and development of new collections here, a mere 45min tube ride from our homes. 

Would you say linen is acceptable for business and how would you style your linen collection for a business meeting? 

Absolutely. One of our missions is to reinvent the way we think of linen (why not, it’s the most sustainable fabric out there?). We want to demonstrate how the fabric can be worn all year around, in the city and to business meetings. Inga our CEO, with a background in finance, wears the black suit to all her business meetings and and Isabella lives in the Tulum Black Jumpsuit in the winter. For styling, the Nomade Suit is oversized so we often wear it with a tight body. White or black for meetings and a colourful body or cropped top at night. We also love the Nomade t-shirt, it’s a true staple with a very elegant neckline. We wear it with the Boyfriend Trousers or Inga’s favourite – together with a pair of yoga leggings. Our other favourite for the City is the black Tulum Jumpsuit with slight cropped legs. It’s an amazing staple, works day and night and can easily be dressed up for an evening out. 

What is a timeless fashion piece for you and what has been your simples & smartest fashion investment so far? 

Black or White – Linen is a K.I.S.S material easy combinable with accessories and statement shoes.

Timeless for us is natural elegance. It comes from within and is expressed in how we act and what we wear. You often find it in the colours of nature like black, white, sand, dust pink and green, and in the fabric cut – the silhouette and tailoring  – of traditional pieces like the shirt, the suit and the dress. Looking at the Oramai collection, you will see many pieces with our signature tailored collar which gives elegance to a dress, a jumpsuit, a shirt. Once you have established what you like and what makes you feel elegant, quality is everything. Inga’s simplest and smartest fashion investment is the Oramai white t-shirt and black Tulum Jumpsuit (she also lives in the suits!), and Isabella’s is the boyfriend shirt and pants which she wears in both black and white. 

Meet Isabella and Inga at the Sustainable Pop-up from the 2nd of October 2019 to the 22nd of October 2019 in Notting Hill, London!