We had the pleasure of interviewing Maite and find out more about Urbanima and her vision on sustainable fashion.
When and why did you decide to create a vegan and sustainable footwear brand?
I decided to create a footwear brand just right before coming back to Spain after 7 years living abroad.
After living in 3 countries and having 15 years of experience in incredible sales, logistics, supply chain and finance departments, I reached a point when I decided to stop, give my life a complete turnaround and create a project that was meaningful to people and cruelty free.
When you think about it, consuming in a sustainable way, at any level, should be the "normal" thing to do, because it's a balance with which we all win.
How do you think consumers could distinguish between brands that are truly sustainable from those that are just greenwashing?
There are some key points that identify truly sustainable brands:
- Transparency: you can find nearly everything about the brand, production and materials on the web site and social media.
- Limited inventory & no sales: there is no overproduction so no need to get rid of the stock that has not been sold.
- Local production and local providers of materials so there is a true traceability both social and environmentally speaking.
- Timeless fashion: we all promote responsible consumption.
To summarize, using sustainable materials does not make your brand a sustainable one. There are many points to bear in mind such as who made the fashion you are wearing, CO2 emissions caused depending on the production country vs brand country, etc.
Maite Navarrete, Founder of Urbanima
How can you see the future of Fashion? Do you think a real change is possible?
Actually, the question should be “how can you see the future of the planet?”. A real change is needed, urgently. So as fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world the future of fashion MUST change right away.
As per my opinion it won’t be made in a short-term basis because that would mean that all the popular large brands change their business models, the same business models that have led them to build their empires.
Which have been the challenges that you have had to face when creating vegan and sustainable footwear?
One of the challenges that we are facing at Urbanima is the minimum quantity required by our providers. Having to fight for every single new model that we want to produce in a small scale is, by far, the hardest challenge as of today.
Convincing an old industry, such as the footwear industry in Spain, of the importance of a controlled production is impossible mission.
Hopefully within 3-4 years, using vegan and sustainable materials in a small scale will be easily done.
What do you like most of Canussa?
Canussa and Urbànima share 100% of the values. I am in love with every single product of the brand. Not only for the materials used but also for their timeless design and the high quality of each item.
Besides, Maria, Canussa’s owner, is a wonderful human being that shares all her knowledge and tips in order to make Urbànima grow and shine.
Canussa and Urbànima we are two brands seeking for a better cruelty free fashion approach.