In a new wave of small brands aiming to combat the fast fashion industry, BYEM is one such Scandinavian label founded by Emilia Wik. Making a statement through their inherent simplicity, BYEM’s beautiful separates are versatile, practical options for the modern woman, intent on curating her own personal style. Scandinavian simplicity is mixed with smart femininity to produce day-to-night garments made to transcend time and trends. Their collections are all produced in single batches in limited editions, steering away from mass-produced fashion.
“I think knowing your personal style is the most sustainable style choice there is, because knowing your personal style gives you the means to curate a closet filled with clothing you cherish. I think this allows us to choose garments that express who we are rather than covering up in endless trends that leave us empty. I think this is what’s so fun and interesting with BYEM, whilst we are curating our collections, we’re also curating and creating a safe space for personal space to develop and be welcomed. ”
Emilia’s eccentric dresser of a grandmother wearing flowing floor-length silk gowns, multi-coloured dresses and endless layers, lived a life very connected to nature working in organic farming and inspired her to see how personal style and sustainability connect in the long run.
“Fast fashion has wholly changed the way we expect trends to be delivered, 52 times a year instead of two, and it has also increased the distance between the consumer and the manufacturer to such a degree that people behind the clothing are now sadly invisible. This barrier definitely needs to be broken down as fashion and manufacturing is a craft that deserves recognition, as well as ethical working conditions in all stages. “
BYEM’s entire supply chain is certified by GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard), which ensures no restricted pesticides or harsh chemicals are used in the production, including not only the fibre but also all dyes, finishes and accessories (which include environmental- friendly OEKO Tex certified accessories such as PVC and nickel free buttons and zippers). BYEM has also chosen to work with solely independently certified manufacturers to ensure ethical working conditions until they grow in size and can monitor themselves.
“The availability, or the lack thereof more like, of sustainable textiles and manufacturing options is a big challenge. Sadly, I feel that a lot of the resources are spent on developing cheaper and faster ways to produce fast fashion, and less is invested in developing options that could increase the availability of ethical and sustainable textile and manufacturing options.”
BYEM is also working on decreasing their environmental impact with a recycling project while expanding their collections and retailing at their first brick and mortar.
“Looking from a pure fashion perspective, I think sustainable fashion is years ahead of fast fashion. The sustainable fashion segment has gone back to focusing on what the essentials of style are and is making garments that are supposed to last through time and trends whilst staying stylish and timeless. I think this ability to develop and design clothing that lasts in fit, design, texture and colour throughout the years is something worth fighting for.”