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Kowtow is a Fair trade organic clothing label based in Wellington, New Zealand.  Nine seasons old, Kowtow produce a sensitive, intelligent collection of easy wear women’s dresses and separates; this is not an over simplified yoga line of unstructured pieces, but a highly sophisticated, deceptively simple architectural collection of shapes, worn in combination to create an individualistic statement, a point of view and express real character.

The Fall Winter 2012 collection, entitled, the Law of Tangents, is based on mathematics, and the laws that govern it, and the correlations in nature, translated into fabric and design.  Working with the finest quality Fair trade organic cotton, Kowtow regularly visit their farmers and manufacturers.  Passionate about sustainability and ethics in the apparel industry, Kowtow go to great lengths to assure all their practices within their supply chain are sustainable.  With a belief that a fully informed consumer does not knowingly contribute and support a slave based economy, Kowtow decided to change the industry from the inside, by producing their Fair trade organic clothing line, that is ethically and sustainably produced from seed to garment, and certified at every stage of production.  With a philosophical intent of changing consumer habits through example and education, Kowtow aim to rebalance the standards of living, and the continuous exploitation of those living and working in the developing world.

Committed to using only 100% fairly traded and certified cotton, as certified by the Fair-trade Labeling Organization (FLO), Kowtow work with the knowledge that Fair-trade cotton guarantees a minimum price to farmers, providing a sustainable living for cotton producers.  The Fair-trade premium enables cooperatives to fund projects that benefit the wider community, such as funding schools, clinics and giving greater access to clean water.  Kowtow Fair-trade producers also benefit from advance payments and long term relationships, encourage sustainable agriculture and the protection of the environment.

Kowtow’s entire production from seed to garment is done in India, and documented in their own short documentary film.   The Kowtow Kolkata, India factory, where Kowtow garments are produced has a high standard of employee care, with all employees receiving a living wage with social security and a pension, free transportation to work, paid holiday, sick leave, medical insurance, lunch subsidies and overtime pay – all far from the norm in fashion production in Kolkata, India. All employee’s work in a ventilated and spacious environment where unionization is encouraged, and their children receive free schooling.


Kowtow do not utilize genetically modified seeds, their farmers conserve soil through crop rotation, and do not use pesticides, insecticides or chemical fertilizers.  All fabrics are dyed using Global Organic Textiles Standard (GOTS) and approved dyes which, are free from hazardous elements such as nickel, lead, formaldehyde, amines, pesticides and heavy metals.


Kowtow’s winter collection, is stocked in high-end boutiques and stores around New Zealand, Australia and Japan, as well as sold online, and worn by people who appreciate intellectual design, ethical fibers and the ethos that surrounds them.

Website: www.kowtowclothing.com

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