Next month, Manchester was set to host it’s biggest ever sustainable market in the city centre at Hatch – the food, drink and retail destination made up of a selection of re-purposed shipping containers on Oxford Road.
Slap bang in the heart of town surrounded by thousands of students and bustling city-goers, the location was perfect and was the ideal opportunity for many new and existing brands to gain exposure for their independent businesses.
Lately, so many of Manchester’s independent businesses have collectively been making a conscious effort towards a more sustainable future, and I for one am here for it.
Manchester is, of course, known for its mass-production of fast fashion.
After the end of ‘Cottonopolis’ less than a century ago (when Manchester established itself as the centre of the global cotton trade) our city has once again become a global leader in textiles production, but with the question this time being – at what cost does this success come?
Unfortunately, I don’t have the answer. Knowing that fashion is now one of the BIGGEST polluters, it’s an industry which needs to see change, and fast.
One thing I know for certain is that Manchester needs these small, independent brands working together for positive change.
Whether it’s eco-friendly markets, the introduction of sustainable and vegan cocktails at NQ bars like Alvarium, Swap Shop events from Free Mission World or workshops teaching us how to live a little more green, it really is the small things that make all the difference.
It’s Manchester’s wealth of independent businesses who collectively make our city unique, and they need us, the people, more than ever right now to support them and make it through these uncertain times.
Here’s a few of our top picks committed to sustainability that you can support from home…
Community Clothing, founded in Lancashire, prides itself on supporting jobs in the local community whilst offering quality clothing. Think minimal, beautifully designed clothing and accessories for both men and women.
Manchester clothing brand Pholem is dedicated to contributing to environmental focused, ethical and sustainable changes in fashion. Their clothing is simple and effortlessly cool with the guys stocking a range of unisex garments, tote bags and accessories.
Suzy Loves Milo
The guys at Suzy Loves Milo offer reworked and upcycled vintage clothing from around the globe. Continuously updating their stock with everything from vintage Nike, Stussy, Guess, Napapijri, rare trainers, accessories and unique jewellery finds. The best vintage shop in Manc. There I said it. They’ve just updated their Depop & webpage with SO much good stuff.
In Association With
The ethos of In Association With is to support artisanal groups, small and local makers from around the world. Lauren seeks out traditional craftsmanship in different countries and establishes relationships so that together they can create collections of ethically and transparently produced jewellery, clothing and accessories.
The Mountain and Me
Founded in Lancashire, sustainable jewellery brand The Mountain and Me often host regular pop-up markets in Manchester. Expect lovingly crafted and hand-painted wooden pieces including necklaces, earrings and pins.
Lit Candles UK are hand-poured in small batches in Manchester using high-quality soy wax. Not only do they smell amazing, they are created with a cotton/linen wick, premium fragrance oils and essential oils which makes them 100% sustainable! All production is overseen by this good boi.
Manchester brand Zed Bees offer monthly plastic-free subscription boxes which are full to the brim of eco-friendly bathroom products. Their products are stunning, high-quality and 100% recyclable. Get started with The Starter Box, subscribe with The Monthly Box or build your own with The Build-A-Box, delivered straight to your door.
Located inside Hatch, Vin-Yard continuously updates their eclectic menu and are fighting back to the usual mass-produced vino with their delicious alternatives. The wine bar and shop offers vegan, organic, natural and biodynamic wines. They’re currently offering their Wine on Wheels service, and will be delivering to South Manchester & City Centre addresses.