Values are what underpin the way we navigate through life, the way we respond to situations/people and the way we treat others and our environment. The dictionary defines 'Values' as:
'The principles that help you to decide what is right and wrong, and how to act in various situations'.
Values are fundamental to good business practices, the traditional business model of profit above all else is unsustainable and does not take into consideration the people and environmental impact those profits have. Everyone should have the opportunity to make a living, be valued and their skills and expertise appreciated/celebrated. We should want to leave the world in a better place than what we found it, not take from the earth with no understanding or care of the longterm implications. Prior to deciding to re-launch the current Wilderling children's clothing brand, a good few months of soul-searching was undertaken to find our why.
Wilderling exists to develop a way for children to experience quality and sees children's clothing as the embodiment of joy and possibility without excessive waste.
We are based in the picturesque town of Queenstown and are proudly made in New Zealand from the finest quality materials.
Our values that underpin all our decisions at Wilderling are listed here:
This is our mantra, our value that drives all of our decision making with regards to fabrics, design and production. We strive to offer high quality pieces which in turn will enable us to achieve our other goals of sustainability and slow fashion through the need to buy less, reduce waste and pass down pieces to family/friends. Only through having such elements of quality throughout the design and production process, can we do this. We envisage a time when quality was the expectation and where things were built to last.
Wilderling is a timeless view of childhood. We believe in carefully considered design, able to be enjoyed by children, being children. This value links in with quality as well, in that one cannot have one without the other. The time taken to create a design, sample that design, test and refine it is something we pride ourselves on and will always take the extra time to do. We want to celebrate this process instead of the current status quo of quickly making, promoting, and then selling model which we see across fast fashion practices.
The impact of the fashion and garment industry on the environment cannot be denied. Every year we continue to send thousands of tonnes of clothing waste to the landfills, toxic chemicals leach in to the surrounding waterways as run off from factories goes unchecked, people are exploited for their skills and made to work in inhumane conditions – all for the sake of excessive consumer consumption. Together with our vision of creating quality, lasting and thoughtfully considered clothing designs, we believe we can eventually have a positive impact on the environment and social constructs of the garment manufacturing industry. We hope to do this by closing the loop in terms of taking responsibility for the whole lifecycle of a garment. This will not happen overnight, but it is a value that we continue to educate ourselves on and learn from other inspiring brands who have a sustainable business ethos. In doing so we hope to have a neutral impact on the environment and eventually strive to give back and have a positive impact on people and planet.
We are continually striving to be open/transparent and honest with our supply chain and also our end users. We believe that every part of the supply chain, from the farmers who farm the crops, to the people who manufacture the raw materials into fabrics, to the skilled craftspeople who make the garments, to the distributors who move the product around the world – everyone should be able to earn an honest living and have their skills and expertise celebrated. Having come from humble beginnings, where every aspect of the designing, sourcing, making, printing, sewing and selling was done by one founder, we understand this more than ever. The work that goes on behind the scenes to get a finished product to a consumer is huge. Everyone involved, who plays a part in that process, should be rewarded for their time. We think that should always be aimed for above profits and bottom lines. This is a continuous goal, which we are always striving to achieve with every decision we make. We are not perfect, but with holding the value of authenticity at the forefront of our decision making process, we aim to always be held accountable and to learn from every mistake made. It is not a linear process, but a constant cycle of learning and improvement.
These values are what drives the way we aim to engage and interact with suppliers, the men and women who's skilled craftsmanship goes into the making of our garments, and the wholesalers and customers who buy our product. These are the values that influence the decisions on what fabrics and trims to use, and how we source them. It drives our collections - what garments will we make, the style and look of our garments, and the numbers in which we make things. These values are the why we do what we do, they enable us to ask questions, seek answers and to strive to be better.
Clothes are a materialistic item that we are always with, every day, everywhere. Our clothes are often the first thing people see, for some they are a way of expression, a necessity, a comfort, a luxury, a protection, or a means to an end. Whatever they are for you, they are something to everyone. Clothing affects everyone and it's wider impact on the world cannot be denied.
Wilderling's design and production represents a way of life - a long-lasting, considered, joyful approach. We sincerely hope that through example these ethos become a consideration in our children's minds - quality, patience and consideration for our own impact. We also hope to encourage the engagement in life with joy and a sense of occasion, and the importance of enjoying this. The delight in self-pride and the subtle impact of treasuring fewer, better objects in life rather than excess. Recognising what you have, appreciating it and the reward of taking care. It is our hope to contribute to our children feeling these optimisms and "old-fashioned" perspectives as they move further into the modern world through their experience growing with Wilderling.
"Many skilled craftspeople have been involved in all aspects - from caring for the sheep, weaving/knitting the fabrics, creating the patterns, to constructing the finished product that you see here. We hope you enjoy the love and care that has gone into each and every Wilderling garment. It is a real labour of love, and we are incredibly grateful for all the support"
Founder + Director