The Sustainable Product
When you wear a pair of drys well and long, some magic will come your way.
Although organic cotton is the main material we work with, we strive to use other sustainable materials for non-denim products.
For us, it means a product made with at least 70% of a sustainable fiber. Aside from organic cotton we use recycled fibers, for example, wool and polyester.
You decide how far they go
No matter how your Nudie jeans looked when you bought them, they all began as a pair of dry denim. Even the pre-washed and pre-distressed styles were dark indigo denim at first. We cherish well-worn and mended jeans. Jeans that become a part of us when worn a long time, just like a second skin.
At every stage, from harvesting the cotton, to indigo dyeing and weaving, down to the sewing, men and women have worked hard to create our products. That is why we value the product so highly and will always believe in the worth of repairing and reusing. We recommend our customers to wear their Nudie jeans for 6 months before the first wash. The outcome depends on who you are and how you live your life in the jeans. But regardless of the lifestyle, your jeans become a log of the time gone by, and they will end up as one of a kind, shaped by you.
An important part of the break-in process is of course not to wash your jeans too often, but washing your denim early is great if you want an even, clear blue tone. There is not one right or wrong way to go, as long as you love and respect your jeans. You decide how far, and in what direction they go.
But if it’s those strong contrasts you’re after, keep in mind that an early wash will reduce the chances to get that distinct look. Airing them instead of washing will also save water. And this is the first part of the smart but still so simple eco cycle. Following the eco cycle makes your Nudie Jeans more beautiful while also saving resources.
Why does Indigo fade?
During the dyeing process, the natural cotton warp yarn is dipped into a number of indigo dye baths where it gradually turns to a deep blue color. As indigo dye can’t be completely fixated onto and penetrate the cotton fibers – the color will bleed and fade as long as the denim is worn.
If you scrape a cotton warp thread with the edge of a knife, the indigo dye will bleed and reveal the white core layer. The same principle applies when wearing a pair of dry jeans.
Free Repairs for Life
Every pair of Nudie Jeans comes with a promise of free repairs. No matter when or where you got them. Our jeans are meant to be worn a lot. We use only high quality fabrics and the sewing is top class.
As we provide the jeans, we also take care of them when they are torn. Just wash your jeans and hand them in to your closest Nudie Jeans Repair Shop. Once they are patched and sewn, you have an updated version of your favorite jeans.
If you feel the moon is closer than any of our Repair Shops, you can look for our Repair Partners. They are fully equipped and handle your repairs as if you had left your jeans at our shop. Of course they do it for free as well. We also got repairs on wheels. Catch the Mobile Repair Station as it hits your town.
Our shops are called Repair Shops because for us, it is just as important to care for and repair the jeans we once sold, as it is to sell new ones. Of course, you can buy all of our products in our Repair Shops, but we have also chosen to give the Repair Stations a key position in the store.
The idea behind the Nudie Jeans Repair Shops, is for them to serve as hubs where our jeans are repaired, resold as second-hand products or handed in to the Nudie Jeans recycling program. Last year we collected 11 573 pairs of jeans in our shops. Thanks to our customers using this service, together we saved about 9 258 kilos of textiles to be reused or recycled.
"Every pair of Nudie jeans, no matter where you buy them, comes with a promise of free repairs"
In 2019 we repaired 63,281 pairs of jeans, which means we prolonged the life of 50 000 kg of clothes. That's an increase of 15% up on 2018. If each person who repaired their jeans with us had decided to buy a new pair, the production of these jeans would demand 443,000 tons of water, an amount that would fill 177 Olympic swimming pools.
If there’s no Repair Shop around the corner where you live and there are no planned visits from the Mobile Repair Station, you can order a free of charge repair kit.
To prolong the life of a garment is even more sustainable than recycling. It can be done by using the garment for a long time, reselling the garment, reusing the fabric to create something new, making patches for repairing or making-materials for new products.
At Nudie Jeans we do all of this, all to reduce waste. We offer our customers 20% off a new pair of jeans when handing in an old pair of Nudie Jeans. The jeans that we sell again in our Re-use range are washed and then repaired if needed, and ready to become a new customer’s favorite pair.
We are also proud that we can label our Re-use jeans with “Bra Miljöval”, the Swedish “Good Environmental Choice” eco label issued by the Swedish Society for Nature Conservation (Naturskyddsföreningen).
In 2018, we introduced Re-use Online, where in limited drops we made pre-loved denim available in our online shop. The results have been great, and all drops sold out within a few days. Nudie Jeans wants to take responsibility for the impact that we create, which is why we have chosen to explore ways to reuse the fabric of our old denim by turning it into new products that we can sell again, as the first step before up-cycling and later on recycling at a fiber scale.
''Prolonging the life of the jeans by selling them as Re-use is also a way to showcase the value of the garment. In 2019 we sold 3 521 pairs of Re-use jeans.''
When we have used and reused denim for a long time, we need to explore recycling, as the last step of closing our loop. Recycling reduces waste, saves energy, and reduces the consumption of virgin raw materials. Cotton fibers last much longer than we normally tend to use or wear our clothes. A pair of jeans can be recycled in various ways, there are challenges in both the mechanical and chemical recycling processes. We are constantly looking for new ways of extending the life of our cotton fibers.
In the exploration of recycling our own products, we endeavour to keep the organic cotton separate from the conventional cotton in the recycling process. This way, it can be used again as recycled organic cotton, which we think is the very best alternative. By exploring ways of recycling our own products we know that the input of recycled cotton is organic, along with the input of new cotton. The new product would, therefore, be both organic and recycled.
To be able to scale up this circular idea to more than just one or a few projects, we need a steady inflow of our own denim to be used as raw material. This means that the more Nudie Jeans we can collect in our Repair Stores the better, both for reuse purposes and for recycling.
In 2019, we collected 11,573 pairs of old Nudie Jeans in our Repair Shops. This is an increase of about 1,000 pairs compared to 2018, and we hope that more and more customers will hand in their jeans to us when they no longer want them. This way we can continue to prolong the life of the cotton fiber, regardless of whether this is as a pair of Re-use jeans, patches, new accessories, or as a new fiber blend in a new pair of jeans.
Unsold & Faulty Garments
To minimize the volume of unsold products and deadstock, we need a controlled and responsible product flow, which is key to mitigate overproduction and overconsumption. This requires tailored logistics and technical solutions as well as meticulous product planning and the most accurate forecasting possible.
At the end of the season, unsold products from shops are sent back to the warehouse for each respective market. Our European shops send them to the Korallen AB warehouse in Borås, Sweden; American shops send them to a warehouse29 in New Jersey, and Australian shops send them to the warehouse30 at our office in New South Wales, Australia. We try to be proactive and send items back to Korallen, from where they can be sold online, primarily during sales periods. Whatever remains in shops will be sent directly to one of our two outlets in Hede or Barkaby, Sweden. The management of faulty items is similar to how we handle unsold products.
Production seconds and leftover fabrics
In production, we sometimes end up with products that do not meet our quality requirements due to minor defects; these garments are referred to as seconds. Tops such as jackets, shirts, sweaters, and knitwear with minor defects are often amended or adjusted already in the factories, which makes the number of seconds in these product categories close to zero. Since denim laundering processes entail a higher likeliness of style differences, seconds among jeans occur more frequently than among tops, but even though the garments might not make it to a shop, they are still valuable material resources. For example, seconds can be used in recycling projects as an alternative way to optimize our material resources.
Although we often buy minimum volumes of fabric stock, we sometimes end up with leftover fabrics at our production suppliers in between collections. The first solution is often to use the fabric for our production and styles in future collections or for the production of giveaways. Alternatively, we sometimes use the digital platform Rekotex, where textile companies can sell leftover fabrics to smaller players at a good price.
Product samples produced when creating new collections, are sent to our outlet shops or sold occasionally at samples sales events in our head office. Some of the revenues from the sample sales in 2019 were reinvested in local social sustainability projects through Göteborgs Stadsmission (the Gothenburg City Mission). Garments that are not sold are stocked until future projects. In 2019, we contributed with approximately 110 kg of unsold product samples to Style it Forward, the pop-up shop of Hungerprojektet (the Hunger Project), where all sales revenues were used to empower women in selected countries struggling with hunger and poverty. Product samples that are not possible to sell or donate are considered material resources for upcycling or recycling projects.
Bags and Packaging
We care a great deal about taking responsibility for the production of our clothing. We, therefore find it equally important to care for how we package and distribute our products to the customer. All bags and gift boxes used in our Repair Shops are made from recycled paper and are FSC certified. The Forest Stewardship Council offers certification to ensure responsible forest management. Since 2017 we buy all of our paper bags, gift boxes, and plastic bags for our online shop from Avisera’s ÅterBära program. This enables Avisera to invest in tree planting to counterbalance the CO2 emissions from the packaging materials.
In 2019, we sourced a new polybag supplier to consolidate the production of our polybags and to ensure that all polybags that are used for our production are made of 80% recycled plastics.