For Love and Lemons is a brand known for their delicate and creative clothing designs and lingerie. The brand has significantly increased their sustainability and transparency in recent times, however they could be doing more to reduce their impact. The company is transparent about their design process, manufacturing processes, and environmental impact, and they have set goals for themselves to be more sustainable in the future, including transitioning to organic linen and recycled polyester. They are open about what they could be doing better, and I respect that they admit their shortcomings. The company itself sets its prices extremely high, and this makes their stuff fall out of reach of the average consumer. Overall, I think the brand will continue to grow with regard to sustainability in the future.
The new Trellis Rose Bustier is made of several components. The foundation is 100% Polyester, the embroidery is 98% polyester and 2% metallic, and the contrast is 100% polyamide. In a statement on their sustainability page, For Love and Lemons reveals that they are transitioning to recycled polyester, although they give no timeline or progress report for this goal. Additionally, polyester is not a sustainable material due to the high energy required to synthetically make it. FLL also states that they are opting for viscose and rayon materials when possible, although these are also controversial materials due to the chemicals used to create them. With regard to these materials, they state, “We realize this isn’t the most ideal option, but as we evolve our sustainability efforts, a step away from traditional polyester is a step in the right direction.” FLL addresses and actively fights the issue of microfibers in the fashion industry by using Guppyfriend washing bags to capture microfibers that would normally enter water systems. FLL is GOTS and GRS certified for the recycled materials that they do use, and they are partnering with Cloverly to purchase renewable energy offsets (what this means is that they audit their carbon footprint and “offset” it by purchasing/investing in sustainable energy). FLL has a lot of work to do in this department, however they are making more efforts to be sustainable. They are transparent and open about their goals and current steps they are taking, although there are areas where they come across a little greenwashed or misleading. While the materials themselves are mostly not sustainable, FLL is moving forward with their sustainability.
For Love and Lemons is extremely transparent when it comes to their factories and production. On their website, they have separate pages for transparency, sustainability, behind the brand, and inside their factories. FLL has two factories and only produces their products in two countries. As the Trellis Rose Bustier is part of the #FLLforVS collection, a partnership with Victoria’s Secret, it is produced in collaboration with Bennett and Company at a factory in Guangzhou, China. Both factories that FLL uses are based in China, and they state on their website, “We strongly believe we have found the perfect factory that offers a safe, fulfilling work environment for its employees.” FLL explains that they “opt for China” because the factory they chose “offers more advanced technology options that can produce the highly intricate design features” that they incorporate into their products. International manufacturing does increase greenhouse gas emissions due to transportation, however their use of only two factories is commendable given that many companies use many factories across multiple countries. FLL published documents detailing their factory and how things are run, including their code of conduct and employee life.
As a company, For Love and Lemons began as a lemonade stand that eventually turned in a female-led luxury clothing and lingerie brand. The company in more recent years has stepped up their efforts to be more sustainable. For example, in May 2020, they launched a sustainable collection made from 100% recycled material, and they have detailed pages on their website regarding transparency and sustainability. They’ve outlined the goals that they have, but there is no timeline and very little information regarding their progress so far. Additionally, FLL partners with Victoria’s Secret, a notably unsustainable brand due to its minimal use of eco-friendly materials, lack of certified labor standards, low transparency, and more. FLL’s products are extremely expensive for the average consumer, which makes their products only available to a certain socioeconomic demographic. I think that the company is in the beginning stages of pursuing sustainability and they are doing certain things to reduce their impact, however they do have a lot more work to do. I look forward to seeing how they grow in this department.