Oat Milk Club promotes a sustainable and plant-based lifestyle by having important topics flagged on cute, colourful clothes. Check out our interview below with the brand founder:
Tell us a little about yourself and your background.
Hi there, my name is Gregory, and I’m from Switzerland. I grew up in Geneva and had the chance to live in many different cities such as Madrid, New York, or Lausanne. I started my plant-based journey about 7 years ago when I decided to cut off meat from my diet. Being passionate about food and sustainability, the idea of creating a line of clothes raising awareness around these important topics came out quite naturally!
Describe your brand in a few sentences.
The Oat Milk Club is a kickass clothing brand striving to create the most unique and eco-friendly apparel while promoting a sustainable and plant-based lifestyle.
What does sustainability mean to you?
Sustainability means meeting our own needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. In addition to natural resources, we also need social and economic resources. Sustainability is not just environmentalism.
Can you tell us a bit more about the manufacturing process of your products?
While we are a Swiss brand with our offices located in Geneva, all our inventory, production process, and shipping are handled in France. We decided to team up with Stanley/Stella as they are among the most ethical and environmental-friendly suppliers on the market. Our clothes are manufactured mostly in Bangladesh, but we are proud to say that they’re certified with the prestigious labels: OEKO-TEX, GOTS, Fair Wear and Peta approved vegan.
Our wonderful visuals are then printed on textiles using water-based inks, 100% eco-certified. Lastly, our clothes are shipped without any plastic in nice top-quality recyclable cardboard sleeve made of recycled material!
Where do you gain inspiration?
From people. The whole project started from a conversation with friends. When we first launched with only a handful of t-shirts, it was people’s encouragement and kind words that kept us rolling. We aim to inspire people to turn to a plant-based lifestyle but the truth is that we probably learn even more from the people who follow us! Whether it’s through social media, email, or sometimes even letters, we always love to have a chat with our customers and chat about anything.
What’s the story behind your brand’s name?
Not sure if we can call this a story, but some friends and I were big fans of oat milk and when we first discussed the idea of creating a clothing brand we thought that the name Oat Milk Club would fit nicely! Also, the idea behind is to have this sense of group, being part of a club where people share the same vision and values as you do.
What inspired you to create your business? How did it all start?
I truly believe that in today’s world, it is essential to pay attention to what we eat, what we buy and how all our actions impact our world. That is why the first purpose of our brand is to raise awareness around these important topics. And what better way than having it flagged on clothes? 😀
What are some of the products you have created that are closest to your heart? Please share them with us!
As every product is designed by me, they are all close to my heart! But if I were to choose a favorite, I guess I would go for the “Make hummus not war” piece. It’s a simple design but with a strong message and sometimes it’s all you need to vehicle an idea.
How did you adapt to the current situation? What are the challenges you faced and how did you tackle them?
Covid-19 was a huge challenge for us. And I guess for many other brands/people. As we only sell online and don’t have any physical presence, it was essential that our supply chain handled the change well and didn’t collapse. The essential part was to guarantee our employee’s safety while respecting governmental regulations. Luckily, our production center wasn’t shot down during lockdown but we had to adapt the way we worked, fewer employees at the same time, safety distances, and many other safety measures had to be established. Unfortunately, some items went sold out as we couldn’t restock them and general delivery time got a bit longer than usual but we adapted our communication by being totally transparent about our situation and people were really comprehensive about it!
What made you choose Eco Fashion Labels to sell your products?
When we decide to collaborate with other brands/marketplace like Eco Fashion Labels, the first thing we look at is their environmental commitment and societal responsibilities. It’s important for us to share common values and in this case, Oat Milk Club and Eco Fashion Labels was a great match.
What do you think the near future looks like for independent/sustainable brands like yours?
Generally speaking, it’s great to see that people pay more and more attention to how they shop and from whom. As I like to say: “every time you spend money, you are casting a vote for the kind of world you want”. I believe that the fashion industry is slowly making a switch from fast fashion to slow fashion, which will result in the creation of many new independent and sustainable brands like ours!
What are the greatest challenges you think sustainable brands face?
As mentioned before, people are willing to buy sustainable products now more than ever, which results in giants of the textile industry to rethink their strategy and adapt to this new demand. While this is a good thing for the world as it means that sustainability is growing more and more mainstream, it does create a visibility issue for smaller brands like ours. Indeed, the sustainable brand market is starting to become oversaturated, and marketing and communication budgets are skyrocketing if you want to compete against the big players.
What can be improved in this sector?
Being a “small player” offers advantages too. It allows us to be more agile and reactive, we are always looking for ways to improve our production process, working conditions, sourcing of our products. We can adapt faster to changes than bigger actors in the market.
And more importantly, it allows us to be closer to our customers, listens to their demands and wishes, and offer them the highest customer service possible!
Shop the Oat Milk Club collection on Eco Fashion Labels: https://ecofashionlabels.com/collections/oat-milk-club
A big thanks to Gregory for taking part in the interview with us! ❤
Keep up to date with us:
Written by: Chantal 🙂