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Exploring Beauty with Baukjen de Swaan Arons
Longevity is not always a word associated with fashion, but if true style is timeless, then our wardrobes should be, too. That’s the philosophy of London-based contemporary womenswear brand Baukjen, who make finely crafted fashion designed to look good and last forever. Their credo of slow fashion means things are designed with care and precision, focussing on ethical, environmental and socially conscious style. A certified B Corp, signatories of the Fashion Pact and having recently been bestowed with the United Nations Climate Actions Awards, things work differently at Baukjen. The lifecycle of each item is carefully considered, from plastic-free packaging to responsible working practices in their European factory, to using fabrics that don’t release harmful chemicals as they break down.
Hind has long admired husband and wife co-founders Geoff van Sonsbeeck and Baukjen de Swaan Arons, as the two brands share a kinship in how they approach people and planet. We caught up with Baukjen to learn more about what it takes to run a truly stylish and sustainable company – read on for that, and an exclusive discount code.
Tell us about the origin story of Baukjen – what was your vision?
Effortless, timeless clothes for the modern woman that are ethically and responsibly made.
What problems did you want to solve?
I wanted a brand that I could rely on to do the editing for me – contemporary pieces that I can wear in multiple outfits and enjoy for years, like a capsule collection. Along the way, I learnt more about the global impact of fashion, and as such, responsible manufacturing became very important as our awareness of climate change grew.
How can fashion be fairer and kinder?
There are several ways, but one I think is often overlooked is making clothes that last for years, so you do not need to be constantly consuming more, and ensuring that the whole life cycle of an item is thought about. Then, ensuring that your supply chain is ethical and being diverse in representation with your communications is also key.
What sustainable swaps have you made in your own life?
It’s an ongoing process where Geoff (my husband) and I have swapped out products that are unkind to the planet for kinder products. For example, we eat less meat and cycle a lot more than we used to. We’re always on the lookout for what more we can do in our house and lifestyle. One thing I really miss is my daily bath – now it’s a short shower.
Walk us through your creative process?
Our creative process is not just about the collections, but also how we represent ourselves to our customers. Inspiration comes from everywhere. Runway shows, interiors, magazines, women on the street – men too. That’s one of the things I love about my job: there’s always inspiration around.
What’s the importance of craftsmanship in your community?
It’s very important as we design clothes and choose fabrics that we want our customers to wear for years. We proudly manufacture in Europe at factories that take great pride in their work.
What’s your favourite skincare moment or step?
Cleaning and moisturising – they both feel so good!
Your biggest beauty indulgence?
Hair products, definitely. I have curly hair and I love trying out different products to see how my hair looks using them.
Best beauty advice you’ve ever received?
A makeup artist told me a few years ago that with getting older, to put eyeliner along the upper waterline instead of above the eyelashes as she felt it was more flattering. I’ve mostly stuck to that since.
What’s next for Baukjen?
For the last 3 to 4 years, we’ve been on a journey to do what we do as ethically and responsibly as possible. That includes swapping to fabrics and trims that are kinder to the planet, removing plastic from our packaging, donating at least 10% of our profits to charity etc. We still have more to do. It’s a journey rather than a destination.
Claim your exclusive discount…
Use the code WHIND15 for 15% off full price Baukjen collection at https://www.baukjen.com/
*Excludes Sale & Outlet items, Rental Collection, Third Party Products, and Gift Vouchers. One use per customer. T’s & C’s apply.
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