Everything I do at my brand, Monique Lucas, is inspired by the sea and the islands it hosts. Alongside this we aim to reciprocate by doing all we can to protect and respect these exquisite environments. I have grown up between the Isle of Wight, Singapore and trips to see my grandmother in the Florida Keys. Through these experiences I have found a continual inspiration for coastal environments, and the fabulous flora and fauna it supports.
My hand-drawn prints feature coral, of which many species are globally-endangered and threatened by climate change, pollution and the impacts of unsustainable fishing, and a variety of sea fauna that are extremely sensitive to changes in sea temperature and pH. Living on the Isle of Wight, I witness the colossal power of nature on a day-to-day basis and regularly raise money for a number of Environmentally-oriented charities, such as the WWF, which I raised £603 for last month by running a half marathon across the island. I am also dedicated to maintaining and firmly situating nature and environmental protection at the heart of my brand as it moves forward and evolves.
From the moment a print takes shape to the point at which a customer receives their product, nature is at the heart of the whole processes. All the fabric in which is sourced from REACH-compliant mills across the world who maintain ecological quality, in terms of levels of ecological impact and responsibility. The majority of fabrics we use are also OREKE-TEX and are made from GOTS-organic approved yarns, ensuring the careful maintenance of the cotton ecosystems and the environments they are surrounded by. The printing method is also carefully considered and uses Digital Pigment inks, which are widely renowned as being one of the most eco-friendly options. The fabric printing requires no water at all and uses approximately 95% less energy than more traditional screen printing methods. We also ensure that virtually zero ink waste is produced while the printing process takes place, by establishing fully-accurate discharging of inks onto our fabric. This production method results in no soapy residues or liquid discharges at all. The inks we use do not contain any chemicals that are restricted or noted as potentially concerning by the European Chemical Agency, and have all passed the Inditex Clear to Wear standard.
Sustainable homeware is only a drop in the ocean in the collective movement of shopping, consuming and living more sustainably, but small brands can make big waves in this industry and I am committed to doing all I can to support these causes. I feel it is truly important to share with others that through whichever industry you are in , there is huge potential for all of us to put the planet in mind in your chosen business and pursuing your passion.