The beauty of so many modern companies is that many support and educate the public about important causes, allowing the consumer to connect to bigger issues while supporting a brand that gives back. One such company is One Tribe Apparel, a Bohemian fashion brand that began when two travellers fell in love with Thailand’s Bohemian styles, and decided to bring them back to to the west in a socially conscious way. This includes a product line that’s sourced and made in Thailand by local artisans who are paid fair wages. This includes gorgeous Bohemian finds such as the fun “Summer Dreams” bucket bag, Elephant Harem Pants, colorful Kimonos and much more.
In addition to offering stunning pieces, your purchase also supports a company that gives back in quite a special way. For every purchase made, One Tribe Apparel donates to the Elephant Nature Park in Chang Mai, Thailand, which rescues and cares for endangered animals so they can roam freely in a safe environment. Amazing, right!? We were certainly inspired and know you will be, too! To learn more about this socially conscious company, we spoke with Suzette Williams, partner at One Tribe Apparel to learn more about how One Tribe Apparel is breaking geographical barriers and uniting women around the globe with a shared passion for travel, culture, and conscious fashion!
Interview with One Tribe Apparel
Wellness Patterns: How did the idea of One Tribe Apparel come about?
Suzette Williams: One of the amazing things about traveling to Thailand is that you’ll meet people from all over the world. I’m from Australia but in addition to great Thai friends I’ve created bonds with people from Africa, Europe, South America and almost everywhere else in the world. It’s this incredible melting pot for travelers and that was the initial inspiration for One Tribe Apparel to bring together a global community through art and fashion.
Wellness Patterns: Tell us about your connection to Thailand.
Suzette Williams: We’re based in Northern Thailand now but I first lived down south on the islands. It’s beautiful, it’s old fashion in some ways where the wifi isn’t that strong so people hang out on the beach and drink a coconut or a beer while taking in this breathtaking nature. It has some of the best food in the world and the people are amazing. There’s just something about Thailand that’s hard to put your finger on, many people come back again and again or they come once and decide they want to move there.
Wellness Patterns: Tell us about your partnership with Elephant Nature Park.
Suzette Williams: One thing many travelers & tourists to Thailand may not know is that many of the commercial elephant rides and attractions are very dangerous for the animals. They are abused & chained & whipped from the time they are babies to make them compliant and obedient. It’s really sad to see and most people don’t know what their contributing to and just want to interact with the elephants. We strongly advise people to never ride an elephant especially if they are strapped in to any kind of basket. This article does a good job explaining the work of the elephant nature park and the plight of the other elephants in the country – https://expertvagabond.com/elephants-in-thailand/
What elephant nature park does is provide a safe sanctuary and rescues and buys elephants that have been poorly treated. At the park you can feed the elephants and interact with them in a fun and safe way that doesn’t hurt them.
We love the mission of the park and since many of our products have the traditional Thai elephant on them we felt it was a great way to give back. Right now we make a donation for every sale of every product we sell but we’re working on exclusive products in the future where 100% of profits will go to the park.
Wellness Patterns: Why do you think fashion should have a conscious connection?
Suzette Williams: With fashion we’re inspired by culture by nature by animals and by our communities. I think it’s only right to give back as a thanks for that. In addition to our work with the park we hire local designers & artists and we make sure all manufacturers we work with have good working conditions and fair wages. It’s possible to do all of these things and still make a profit and we think it’s great that many fashion companies and companies in general are doing this as well.
Wellness Patterns: What are some plans for the future of One Tribe Apparel?
Suzette Williams: The original concept for One Tribe Apparel was that every year we would pick a new destination like Nepal or Bali and do a clothing line featuring the artisans of that location. Unfortunately, that’s incredibly expensive and logistically difficult but we still love the vision. We plan on keeping our roots in Thailand but would love to add styles from Nepal next. As for our product line we’re going to be greatly expanding our collection of bohemian handbags and our yoga accessories like straps and bags.
For more information, please visit: https://www.onetribeapparel.com