7 Ethically made workwear brands for the modern man

Words by Alice Florence OrrFive Minute Read

Back to the office or working from home? Every Monday is a new adventure and your wardrobe should be ready for any challenge. From leather satchels to premium shirts, these versatile brands are the multitaskers you need on your team.

As workplaces have evolved, what we expect from our clothes has changed too. Since contemporary sneakers and smart casual sweaters took over the office, it's no longer just about a suit jacket and slacks. Rather than respond to passing trends, your new work wardrobe should be future orientated, prioritising longevity, quality and sustainability. What it means to be a modern man in a professional environment is different every day, which is why its important to curate a wardrobe that adapts to your changing schedule. Who said we couldn't love the 9-5?

We've curated 7 ethically made workwear brands that elevate the daily grind, making your closet simple, stylish and earth-friendly. Business casual is your new office wardrobe.

Appearance

From home office to the boardroom, Appearance puts Danish minimalism to work. They understand that a professional wardrobe needs to be as multifaceted as the men who wear them, which is why they put functional craftsmanship into every shirt and jacket, using the best European suppliers and quality materials. Their contemporary pieces don't respond to fleeting trends, rather they use classic tailoring and luxury fabrics to give the modern man the work essentials he needs.

Appearance elevate a simple, professional aesthetic through their sustainable values by recycling any by-products and consciously dealing with their water waste. Located mainly in sunny Portugal, Appearance's textile manufacturers and tailors are all located in close proximity, ensuring a reduced carbon footprint.

Kulson

You may have considered cutting down your impact on the environment by reducing work-related travel — but what about your shoes? Sneaker production is carbon intensive, contributing 1.4% of the green house gas emissions to the atmosphere per year. To put that into perspective, air travel contributes 2.5% of all emissions. "Carbon footprint" has never been this literal.

It's not all doom and gloom, as many small, independent footwear brands are leading the way when it comes to earth-friendly kicks. By combining a minimalist, Scandinavian aesthetic with true craftsmanship, Kulson’s sneakers are sustainable as well as stylish. They use the best leathers from Italy and Portugal to create each pair of unisex sneakers, as well as crafting their soles from recycled materials — think planet concieous with an urban touch.

Valenza

Founded by Italian ex-Prada menswear designer, Giuseppe Valenza, this is old-school tailoring with new-school sustainability credentials. Valenza's quality prove that you don't have to sacrifice on luxury when it comes to earth-friendly clothing; by challenging the status-quo, this brand focuses on traceability, organic materials and fair production techniques. Crafted using traditional techniques, every shirt is made in Italy from true Italian materials, such as organic twill, cashmere and tencel, before being finished with recycled tags and hand-sew buttons.

Valenza's collection is made up of two main styles: Otium which features a smart casual aesthetic, and Negotium with a more clean and tailored look, everything you need to take you from day to night, work to weekend.

Kleman

It's no accident that Kleman's shoes have a striking, chunky aesthetic, as the heritage French brand was founded right after World War Two. Durable and comfortable, Kleman's first fans included the French military and railroad workers, and even today these designs maintain their timeless form and functionality.

From suede boots to quality leather brogues, Kleman's shoes are staple pieces for the office, combining a vintage aesthetic with a contemporary vibe - everything the modern man needs to put his best foot forward. Make a fashion statement with sustainable leathers and standardised, premium materials crafted authentically in their Cléon workshop since 1988.

Mismo

With their combination of Danish design heritage and appreciation of classic craftsmanship, Mismo perfectly complements your work/life balance. With a Spanish name, Italian fabrics and Turkish production partners, Mismo produces quintessentially European luggage essentials that will take you from the office to a weekend getaway in real style.

Sick of poor quality nylon, the founders of Mismo sought to create contemporary, eye-catching bags and briefcases that would reflect the needs of men just like them — busy, dynamic, sophisticated.

Mismo's bags are crafted from waterproof Italian-made nylon and vegetable tanned leather accents in a suave combination of closely-engineered function and minimalist aesthetics. Sustainable and elegant, these are the luggage multitaskers you need on your team.

Riley Studio

Riley Studio’s conscious, slow fashion uses the latest in sustainable fabric and technology — their transitional, buttery-soft pieces are ideal for rushing between home and the office. This is a fashion brand with heart, creating gender neutral clothing with kindness at their centre. Every Riley Studio piece is produced sustainably from recycled, earth-friendly fabrics through conscious production methods, meaning these pieces are versatile and durable, meaning they last a lifetime, not a season.

To date, Riley Studio have saved 2.2m litres of water. Not only does their minimal and luxurious collection lend a touch of sophistication to a contemporary work wardrobe, it ensures a sustainable approach to clothing production. We love their recycled fabrics, such as the effortlessly chic Biscuit Recycled Cashmere Polo Shirt that proves this is a brand that understands how to create cool, neutral pieces for any season. Pair with sustainable sneakers for an easy office look.

STOW

Finding a brand that embodies contemporary style while maintaining quality and craftsmanship isn't a common thing. STOW is a rare gem, mastering both design excellence and cool-factor in their carefully crafted accessories that last a lifetime. These bags and tech cases are designed to be passed down from generation to generation, another reason why longevity is a priority for this brand. Each piece takes a year to make and exemplify the best of British craftsmanship.

By using European-sourced materials like Spanish leather and Italian goat suede, STOW keep their resources local. These are quality, lifestyle essentials that will last a lifetime, and there's nothing better for the environment than a design you can keep forever.

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