Making a garment is one element of fashion production, but what about the materials these products are made from? In this part of our Fashion Revolution series, we take you behind the scenes of some of our local suppliers of fabric and hardware.

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At Obus, we like to design our clothing using fabrics that we trust to go the distance – in terms of wearability, comfort, and compatibility with our original prints. There’s a reason we feature cotton, linen, Tencel, Viscose, Merino wool, cotton jersey and denim in our seasonal collections over and over again. You love these fabrics, and so do we!

To talk about our favourite types of fabric could cover a dozen separate blogs, so we’ll keep it simple today and tell you about the fabric behind one of Obus’ best-selling products: our black TRAVELLER PANT. Yep, you know the one – you might even own a pair (or three!).

Our TRAVELLER PANT is produced in different cotton jersey or Merino wool colourways each season... but classic black is a staple!

The sisterhood and the TRAVELLER PANT

While we produce almost all of our products in limited edition quantities, the TRAVELLER PANT is one style we continue to produce over and over again (because you can’t get enough of them!). We love the Cotton Traveller Pant in Midnight because it is made from GOTS-certified Organic Cotton. The cotton is dyed by our partners in Melbourne, before being made by our Melbourne makers (maybe we should have called it the MELBOURNE PANT?). Our Winter version of this wardrobe staple - the MERINO TRAVELLER PANT - is also dyed here and made in Melbourne.


Our cotton jersey and Merino fabric is produced and dyed in Melbourne.

You might recall we visited these folks last year – they also dye our Merino fabric. Raw wool for all our Merino collections is sourced from New Zealand and Australian sources where possible, and when we source Merino from Vietnamese producers, this is done so by a Bluesign® system partner, which means the company producing the wool complies with strict ethical and environmental standards right from the beginning of the manufacturing process.

Not all the cotton we use is organic, but we work hard to ensure it is ethically sourced. We are signatories of the Uzbek Cotton Pledge, meaning none of our cotton is sourced from Uzbekistan or Turkmenistan (these countries have a seriously poor reputation on human rights when it comes to farming cotton). Most of our cotton is grown and produced in China, and we’re moving toward ensuring all cotton suppliers are BCI Members.

Of course, cotton is not the most environmentally friendly base material – it uses a lot of water in its growth and production. To counter that, we look to other methods of reducing water waste, such as our move away from screen-printing our original designs onto fabric, towards digital printing. It’s a small step, but in adopting a developing technology we hope that in coming years it will have a big impact on the industry as a whole.



Buttons and trims and zips, oh my!

The Melbourne fashion industry is full of colourful characters, and none more bedazzled than Jim Ketoglidis, affectionally known by his business’ name: Jimmy Buttons.

Every month or so, our production assistant Sam will venture into Jimmy’s shop in Fitzroy seeking out the perfect button, elastic or zip to complete an Obus design. And oh my, is there a lot of options!

Self-described as ‘a magical Aladdin’s Cave full of amazing fashion accessories’, this Melbourne institution is an important part of the local fashion industry.



Jimmy Buttons has wall-to-wall-to-ceiling buttons, zips and other haberdashery in Fitzroy, with its namesake Jimmy at the helm.
Jimmy Buttons is open to the public, so you can go and see it for yourself (and say hi to his pups from us!).

Obus Corozo buttons – a little thing that does a lot of good

We want to give a shout out to one type of button we often use in our garments, because it has some pretty cool environmental credentials. It’s a corozo button.



Obus corozo buttons ready to be sent away for dyeing to match our forthcoming SEVEN SONGS print. They're dyed for us into custom colours in Melbourne’s northern suburbs.
What is a corozo button? Well, corozo is a 100% natural product. It’s actually a nut that grows on the Phytelephas palm tree, a native found in countries such as Ecuador and Peru.

Corozo goes a long way to support indigenous communities of northwest South America with sustainable trade and employment, and because the Phytelephas Palm can’t be grown on plantations, it doesn’t risk these areas falling victim to deforestation and over-farming.

As a button material, corozo is tough, can be dyed into a multitude of colours and is much more environmentally friendly than plastic. Isn’t it great how a small choice can lead to a lot of good?

Read more about how we’re reducing waste at Obus tomorrow, as we wrap up our Fashion Revolution series!

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