melbourne vegan

Jaclyn McCosker

Maven Women: Sustainable fashion review

Maven Women: Sustainable fashion review

The dress featured in this article was a gift, but I am not being paid for my honest opinion.

“The most flattering shift dress you’ve ever worn” has a certain level of appeal.

The Amira dress by Maven Women was designed over a decade by a social justice lawyer/mother who was looking for her dream dress that’s function and fit was matched by its ethics. It’s a dress designed by women for women, including all women along its supply chain.

I came across Maven Women because I was looking for a new work dress that was Micronesia-appropriate but would transition across to my Australian wardrobe. I wanted it to work with my Micronesian open sandals as well as a more modern professional shoe. The dress had to be conservative but not frumpy. If I was adding a new wardrobe item, I wanted to make sure it would last. I wanted it to be my only dress of this style. A one-time investment that I’d carry for years. My new go-to I could reach for any job interview or professional development event.

But, of course, functionality aside it must be low waste, must be organic and must be made to Fair Trade principles.

So Maven Women solved all my problems.

The idea of each Maven Women piece is that it’s crafted to fit a real human body instead of a mannequin. The designers wanted to ensure it was inclusive of different stages of life, as we know women’s bodies tend to ebb and flow. Each design is fitted to dozens of women of various builds, sizes and ages to ensure it looks good on every shape, not just on the sample model.

 Aside from practical sizing, Maven Women follows six core values:

  • Investing in quality

  • Natural beauty

  • Supply chain awareness

  • Women’s empowerment

  • Connectivity and education

  • Restorative justice

The outer fabric used is an eco Ponte de Roma made primarily from organic cotton, and this is an innovative new technology created to replace the traditional double knit polyester fabrics used in uniforms.

The lining is a 100% organic cotton block print fabric from Jaipur, India. You’ll have seen me wearing similar block prints from Jaipur from my own fashion line. I am always attracted to Jaipuri prints and I love to have a secret piece of Rajasthan so close to my heart. Maven Women work in partnership with Fair Trade producers Mehera Shaw in Jaipur. The rest of their production chain is located within California, and this is all totally transparent on their website.

By presenting realistic images of women and respectful sizing, producing timeless long-lasting pieces, and ensuring supply chain partners follow the 10 fair trade principles, respect women and are GOTS-certified where possible, Maven Women try to cover all bases in making the perfect dress. 

I have tried the Amira in Twilight in size small. The piece is designed to be altered with the option of opening or sewing the pockets closed, and a three-inch seam to allow you to let the dress down if you’re a little leggier. The Amira is also available in currant or sapphire and runs from size XSP to XL.

If you’re on the market for something similar I’d recommend following their Instagram to see the dresses styled on different women.

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