How to make your kid's closet more green

With constantly growing, regular play-in-the-dirt kids, even homes with minimalist parents will face the onslaught of apparel. Here’s how to cope.

Photo: Erik Putz

Even if your kid isn’t a human Tasmanian devil, between sauce-filled lunches and playtime spills, they’re going to get their clothes dirty—which means you’ll need a lot of backup outfits. In an effort to be more eco-conscious you’ve tried the kids clothing swaps and you aren’t above purchasing second hand, but the call of fast-fashion can be difficult to resist. These six sustainable kids clothing brands are Canadian and offer a feel-good way to buy new.

1. Nudnik

kids patchwork t-shirt
Photo: Courtesy of Nudnik

Founded by twin sisters from the waste management industry, this clothing is made from clean, unused, pre-consumer off-cut organic cotton fabrics that would have otherwise ended up in the landfill.

2. Mabee Baby

denim romper
Photo: Courtesy of Mabee Baby

In search of gender neutral and eco-friendly clothing for her son, the founder of Mabee Baby created a collection of kids’ loungewear made from a healthy mixture of up-cycled, salvaged and new materials.

3. Mini Mioche

young boy dancing
Photo: Courtesy of Mini Mioche

Free of any flashy branding, these stylish basics are made using ethically sourced Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) cotton and bamboo.

4. The Wild

grey kids' shirt with lumberjack print
Photo: Courtesy of The Wild

Each month, The Wild donates to the David Suzuki Foundation and uses eco-friendly non-toxic inks to print its designs.

5. Dog and Daisy

yellow corduroy kids jumper
Photo: Courtesy of Dog and daisy

Launched by parent company Dagg and Stacey, these kids clothes are made of sustainable Standard 100 by Oeko-Tex fabrics, which include organic cotton, lyocell and modal blends.

6. Nest designs

young boy sitting on a bed
Photo: Courtesy of Nest Designs

This Vancouver-based brand makes muslin products for kids using a blend of rayon, cotton and bamboo, which is a sustainable material.

If purchasing all of your kids clothes from brands like these feels too pricey—or you just need some everyday basics to get you by—you can still do your part in supporting sustainability. These popular companies offer a way to give your kid’s stuff a second life.

H&M

Get a $5 credit for dropping off old clothes from any brand at this fast-fashion retailer. Collected clothes are sorted for donations, to be resold, or recycled into other items, like cleaning cloths or broken-down fibres, which can be used in insulation.

Native Shoes 

This Canadian shoe company accepts all types of footwear for recycling as part of The Remix Project. Collected shoes are dismantled and used to make materials to build playgrounds.

Nike

When you bring old sneakers to Nike locations participating in the Reuse-A-Shoe program, they grind them up and use what’s created to make new shoes, apparel and playing and running surfaces.

The North Face

Drop any brand of clothing or footwear in any condition at participating The North Face stores to be repurposed or recycled. When you donate, you get a $10 reward that you can use on purchases of $100 or more at The North Face.

Patagonia

If your Patagonia gear can’t be repaired, you can mail it in or drop it off at a participating Patagonia store and they will repurpose or recycle those items.

Zara

Drop off old clothes at participating Zara locations and they will be donated, recycled, transformed into new fabric, or sold to finance the social projects of non-profit organizations, like the Salvation Army.

Read more:
How to raise a green kid without freaking them out 

5 ways you can reduce your family’s fashion footprint

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