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1. Why you need The Perfect Pullover from Fernando the Alpaca
One year ago we founded this company with a simple goal: change lives for the better. Every timeless, high quality garment purchased from VIRTŪ makes a positive impact on the lives of our producers, their communities and our environment. Our pullovers are sustainable and ethical from fiber to pullover, we’re determined on disrupting the fast fashion industry and making it simpler to choose ethical fashion over it.
After much learnings from our first product, the next step for our company is Our Perfect Pullover, created with a family business in Bolivia that perfectly echoes our ethical beliefs. Together, we are elevating the production process, making it completely transparent and ethical from start to finish.
2. The Perfect Pullover
Together with our partners from Bolivia, we’ve developed the ideal sweater. The Perfect Pullover is multi-purpose and timeless. Its ultra cozy, eco-friendly yarn is not only weather resistant, but also durable and comfortable. We can’t take it off, and you won’t want to either.
The Best Yarn Ever
For our Bolivian production we’ve gone with what some people might call world’s best yarn (us included). This fabric meets the highest standards of production and has one of the lowest environmental impacts. Not to mention that no alpacas were hurt in the process. These stubborn but beautiful animals are mainly cared for by small scale owners living in the Bolivian Mountains. This 100% natural alpaca yarn is consciously collected and doesn’t require epic amounts of water to produce like most fabrics.
3. How does our empowerment program work?
Our impact model is the result of a combination of the economic possibilities your purchases create and the priorities identified by the communities we impact. By working in our system, not only are knitters being paid above a living wage, but we are all working together as a family to empower the entire community.
Empowerment Fund: After many conversations with our producers in Bolivia, we've decided that the best approach to promote a long term empowerment is to create "The Empowerment Fund" a tool which allows us to dedicate 6,50€ of every pullover we sell to a fund which will be used for early education and micro finance programs for our producers to expand their business or to cover emergencies.
Working from home: Our system encourages our partners to work from home, allowing them to be close to and care for their families, while also saving on long and expensive commutes. Furthermore, our partners can work at their own pace, which encourage them to expand their own businesses and share their expertise with their families.
Why only 130% of average salary and not 300%?
We don't believe in importing standard solutions to the communities we impact. In Bolivia development is perceived completely different as in the Dominican Republic. What we've assured in Bolivia is to pay the best possible salary without damaging the sustainability models of the local impact models promoted by our partners from Nanay. This salary level allows us to produce in a sustainable way and guarantee a long term impact through our Empowerment Fund.
Examples of success
Here we have Mario Abalos Leon y Santusa Torres Gomez. After Mario was laid off by a mining company, Santusa taught him how to work the sewing machine. Together they not only managed to raise their children, who are now parents themselves,but they also expanded their business and have hired ten additional sewers. Santusa and Mario, now also know as entrepreneurs, are now in the process of expanding their home in order to work more comfortably.
Discover the rest of our team on our website.
Find your Perfect Size
Our pullovers have a casual fit. Our sizes are according to international standards: S, M, L, XL and XXL.
4. Our partners
Check out our local partner Patricia Maldonado Nanay's CEO and founder. We are so happy to be working with such an amazing lady which already leads a company that empowers more than 600 knitters in La Paz and El Alto, Bolivia.
Just as with our other products, we allow our customers to have direct contact with the producers of their garments.
7. Spread the word
Your support is key! The easiest click for you to make this campaign a success is by sharing our story! Your help is much appreciated!
8. How we spend the money
We want to ensure being transparent not just by traceability of the goods, but also by sharing our cost distribution in the project. We are focusing in our project to incubate a new fashion role model, so we try to keeping the overhead costs at the lowest possible level. That’s why we can ensure that a total of 33% goes into production and material (which still sounds low but is a way above the industry standards of 13% what you can see in the graphics below, where we benchmark our perfect pullover right again the industry standards left).
9. Who we are
We are a group of social entrepreneurs, hopefully looking towards a world where smart, business fashion is not only affordable, but also ethically produced. We created VIRTŪ because we know that with your help we can bring justice and opportunity to the neediest people, protect our environment and look good while doing it!
We are eight crazy believers in social change. Join us in this exciting venture! Find more about the VIRTŪ Team by clicking this magic link.
Risks and challenges
What about delivery this time?
Based on our experiences from our first campaign we optimised the logistical process. We were able to engage two fulfilment providers in Germany and the US respectively covering the European and American markets so we can focus on sending to the rest of the world. All customs processes are now properly set and implemented, so everything is set to for a smooth delivery this time!
Risk of production
The community we are collaborating is stable and working since decades. We were personally onsite different times to check on social standards, make the best possible project and ensuring the capabilities to deliver from both quality and quantity stand point.
- (32 days)