Tonlé: Revolutionizing the Fashion Industry with Zero Waste Apparel

Tonlé is revolutionizing the fashion industry with zero-waste apparel and accessories. Tonlé goods are made using excess fabrics from the garment industry and ethically crafted by artisan partners in Cambodia.

Tonlé founder, Rachel first began her work in Cambodia through a grant. During her time overseas, she saw the shininess of the fashion industry disappear as she learned about the harsh environmental impact and mistreatment of workers in the garment industry. Rachel wanted to take action and create meaningful clothing that positively impacted the lives of the makers, the environment, and the customers wearing the garments. Eventually her journey led her to launch Tonlé, a zero-waste line of apparel and accessories.

So what does zero waste fashion mean? Basically, garment factories throw out large amounts of useable fabrics and instead of these ending up in the landfill, Tonlé intersects and reuses these fabrics to create impactful apparel and accessories. In Tonlé’s crafting process, every piece has a place. The tiniest scraps are used for jewelry or cut up and used for yarn. Even Tonlé’s packaging is made from 100% recyclable materials. Personally, I love that their actions match their heartfelt mission. So important in the garment industry!

Tonlé partners with a variety of skilled artisans in Cambodia including screenprinters, weavers, and more. Tonlé empowers the artisans through steady employment opportunities, fair payment, and honest relationships. Due to Tonlé’s employment opportunities, Cambodians are able to provide for their families and lift themselves out of poverty.

Zero waste sweatpants

Due to the varying materials and colors of excess fabric, Tonlé designs a lot of limited addition or small-batch items making their garments even more unique for customers. When garments are dyed, Tonlé uses quite a few edible materials such as soy milk and lemon to ensure garments are safely dyed with minimal impact to workers and the planet.

I’ve been really enjoying my Black & Grey Kimono Jacket and Black Sreylek Trousers. Both have been great for the Seattle fall! I love the bold look of the Kimono Jacket. It’s great for making a statement and adding more of a “WOW” factor to any minimalist outfit. The long length of this jacket adds a dramatic element to my fall wardrobe! I appreciate the heavy weight of the jacket as well. The Black Trousers are SO comfy and great for lounging around in. The elastic waistband is an added bonus….especially for all the eating I’ve been doing around the holidays! When reading about my joggers online it was cool because I could see a measurable impact of each item. Each Tonlé item shows water saved, pesticides avoided, and emissions avoided. Measuring this impact is great and wonderful to be able to learn about as a consumer.

Personally, I LOVE Tonlé’s bold, unique style. After chatting with founder Rachel, I really feel passionate about what they’re doing and think Tonlé is doing everything they can to be as socially responsible as possible. This is a brand that truly values the makers, planet, and consumer. I love that education is part of Tonlé’s mission. Their website is filled with resources for consumers to learn more about zero-waste in general and Tonlé’s mission. And their variety of price points is great. This is a brand that has some affordable ethical fashion and a few higher end items. I think this is important when trying to reach consumers in different places on their conscious consumer journey. I encourage you to check out Tonlé’s wide variety of products and consider adding some zero-waste fashion to your wardrobe.

Thank you to Tonlé for supporting The Honest Consumer & sponsoring this post! Sponsored content helps us keep The Honest Consumer as a free resources for those interested in learning about conscious consumerism!