I found out about 1 People when I came across their Instagram account and thought wow “I love the simplicity and block colours” but then I found out they were so much more. As a Danish sustainable luxury brand, 1 People designs effortlessly timeless looks for conscious-minded women so that they can stay stylish in an ethical, high-quality fashion. They also donate 40% of their profits to their impact-driven social entrepreneur school, Business For Planet. So not only are their garments stylish and sustainable but as a company they are invested in both environmental and social philanthropy, what’s not to love? We interviewed them about their brand, their garments and their philanthropic work.
What led you to set up 1 People?
Jonathan Tjoa and Rea Tjoa Algreen founders of 1 People ignited their passion and commitment to create a better world through business and mindful leadership. The concept of the company and name 1 People didn’t start as a fashion brand but rather as a way of doing business in another and better way – more aligned with people and planet. It was shortly after initial discussions on sustainable practices, we decided to build a lifestyle brand for conscious women who want to look and do good. We are now expanding into other product ranges and categories for diversified style seekers. Making it clear that comfort, style, sustainability and fair pricing do not have to be mutually exclusive.
What sets 1 People apart from other online women retail experiences?
We offer our audiences complete transparency,showcasing on social channels and on our website content and information on where our products derive from and how they are created. We educate, empower and engage who we reach on socials and through newsletters on the importance of sustainability and how to identify green initiatives in their own lives. We also offer free of charge wellness masterclasses ranging from tea tasting to yoga, at our first regional office in Seminyak, Bali. Our strong USPs, also include; 365 free return and money back guarantee, 3 years warranty and worldwide free shipping.
Have you found the present economic situation has changed how people shop and if so how?
The pandemic has accelerated the shift towards a more digital world and triggered changes in online shopping behaviours that are likely to have lasting effects. As people are spending more time at home, they are looking for more comfortable clothing, which we always keep an integral part of our style and design. All our products aspire for longevity, a quality consumers now value more as in the pandemic many have increased their awareness of fashion’s role in global warming and the importance in shopping for quality not quantity. Also, online it has been noted influencers have been showcasing how clothes for the everyday can be repeated or styled up in different ways, a trend we have always encouraged and offer master classes on.
What has 1 People done to pivot its business to work with these new shopping trends?
To cater the needs of our customers as per trends,all our designs are thoughtfully timeless so they support emerging trends and never fall out of fashion being suitable for all seasons. In response to the pandemic, we are now set to launch loungewear and extend our activewear range as people are working out at home, and moving towards a healthier lifestyle.
How do you source your clothing and designers?
Our in house team of designers manage and take care of the R&D, design process and sourcing. We have a number of criteria to look into before going for any supplier, like the right certifications for the material use, the faire trade and workers environment etc. The most important part for the team is how the people working on our products are treated and in what conditions they are working, followed by the planet aspects, that is wastage, the amount of chemicals used and the origin of our materials. We prioritise the planet and people within. We advocate fair working conditions rewarding everyone adequately for their time and talent. That is why all of our products are FAIR. At 1 People, we value and respect authenticity and transparency. We provide fair pricing for both our audiences and workers, our honest and sustainable supply chain aligns with our integrative ethos and empowers people on a global scale.
What led you to branch into swimwear and underwear?
Swimwear is the first product type that we started with, as our first regional office and our production is done in Bali. When we came across the Regenerated nylon (made from abandoned fishing net) it was the first thing that came to our mind. As for the underwear, this was mainly a need, as for women it was difficult for us to find the most eco-friendly and sustainable options on the market, so we created one where the materials and the dye all are natural, with the style and fit innovative being solution focused with textures and tones created to follow your every bend and twist.
What are your most popular or iconic pieces and why?
The scarves definitely, everything about this product is completely aligned with what 1 People is about. We wanted to pay a tribute to the women who have inspired change and who empowered women throughout history. The material and the artwork are limited edition and unique and that small piece of jewellery just makes the scarves a signature product. Also our bags, as we have worked on these for a long time, the idea to revisit classic pieces of luxury in the 1 People way, all of the bags are made from Pinatex and lined with recycled polyester (made from post-consumer plastic).
Can you tell us more about your “Business for Planet” scheme? How did this come about?
Business for planet is a programme Jonathan Tjoa and Rea Tjoa Algreen founded most recently, due to their mission for business to be much more than profit. We provide free training and mentoring of entrepreneurs and people who want to become one, they come from all over the world. BfP is also a global network of entrepreneurs, alongside the mentoring we also provide funding for the attendees on the BfP programme through Impact Business Investment Group (IBIG). It must become the key driving factor to inspire social responsibility and a fairer world for the communities within. The company provides a wealth of useful information and guidance to support new entrepreneurs and help them find their voice whilst giving them the ability to establish long lasting, successful, business relationships and networks that will come to define what social responsibility truly means.
Do you think becoming more ethical and sustainable is important in the fashion industry in general with so much fast fashion? What can we all do to be a more conscious shopper?
Yes Extremely. Both consumers and companies should only buy and produce what is needed, aspire for longevity instead of blindly following the trends, make socially responsible and fair choices with only sustainable materials and dismiss the greenwashing approach.
What is in the future for 1 People and do you have any exciting new launches in the pipeline?
Yes, the most awaited product that we have been working on this year will be our sustainable sunglasses collection. We are also working on some new clothing and accessory items such as loungewear and trainers we are also aiming to introduce a knitwear capsule for winter 2021.