Selfridges - May Kindness Challenge @theofficialselfridges (May 2020)

  • Background: In April, Selfridges launched it's first #kindnesschallenge to support the charities, medical professionals and key workers whose heroic efforts are helping communities deal with the effects of coronavirus.
  • Description: For the new iteration of the #kindnesschallenge Selfridges is working alongside charity partner +Heroes to reward everyday heroes from the COVID-19 frontline. People are asked to nominate any NHS professional or key worker they would like to give back to. 
  • Impact: Selfridges' shout outs and likes bring exposure and recognition to usnung heroes. In addition, Selfridges selects three to five nominees each week to receive an extra special surprise gift sent to their workplace.

Photos courtesty of @theofficialselfridges (Instagram)

Nordstrom - New Sustainable Goals (April 2020)

  • Background: In recognition of Earth Day, Nordstrom proudly announced several new goals as part of its commitment in combating climate change and increasing environmental stewardship. 
  • Description: Nordstrom is pressing on to conserve resources by making systematic changes throughout its corporate structure and supply chain. It's also focusing on three key impact areas including climate change, environmental impact of its products and services and circularity. Nordstrom also launched Sustainable Style, which not only showcase eco-fashion, but eco-beauty products as well.
  • Impact: To address these specific areas, Nordstrom has committed to meeting the following goals by 2025: Set a science-based target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions; Reduce single-use plastic by half; Use sustainably sourced raw materials in 50% of Nordstrom Made products made of polyester, cotton and cellulosic fibers; Extend the life of 250 tons of clothing; Ensure 15% of all product is considered sustainable; Donate $1mn to support textile recycling innovation.

Photos courtesy of Nordstrom Press

The KaDeWe Group - #StayHome #StaySafe Campaign (April 2020)

  • Background: As the global outbreak made its way through Europe, The KaDeWe Group temporarily closed the doors to all its stores (Alsterhaus, KaDeWe and Oberpollinger) in mid-March.
  • Description: To urge customers to stay home, The KaDeWe Group created the #StayHome #StaySafe campaign, which was also inspired by their sister company Rinascente (see story below). The Group commisioned illustrater Daniel Ramirez Perez to create the colourful campaign filled with inspiring messages.
  • Impact: Using the motto, 'The one who stayed away saved all the rest', the campaign championed the recommendation by health experts to stay at home to stay safe and help stop the spread of the virus.

Photos courtesy of The KaDeWe Group

Rinascente - #STAYHOMESTAYSTRONG Campaign (April 2020)

  • Background: First conveyed as a social communication campaign, #STAYHOMESTAYSTRONG then materialized into six strong, distruptive statements of hope at all the Rinascente stores.
  • Description: The statements, each presented on bright, colourful and captivating graphics, accompany the message of hope and encouragement in the midst of the C-19 Pandemic from Italians who display them on the balconies, front doors and windows of their homes.
  • Impact: #STAYHOMESTAYSTRONG is a message of cohesion, respect and closeness - especially for those who fight the health emergency at the front lines - and a message of solidarity for the cities, with which Rinascente has always had an unbreakable bond.

Photos courtesy of Crisalide Press for Rinascente

Nordstrom - Sewing Masks for Healthcare Workers (March 2020)

  • Background: Nordstrom is joining the fight against COVID-19 by sewing much-needed masks for healthcare providers.
  • Description: As the largest employer of tailors in North America, Nordstrom is leveraging its capabilities to help with the medical supply shortage by teaming up with one of their partners Kaas Tailored. Nordstrom is also encouraging its customers to participate in sewing efforts and contributing to nonprofit organizations.
  • Impact: Despite closing all stores as a safety precaution, Nordstrom has teamed up with Kaas to have members of the alterations teams in Washington, Oregon, Texas and California sew more than 100,000 masks to distribute to healthcare workers in the Providence Health & Services network

Photos courtesy of Nordstrom Press

ODEL - Private Label LUV SL Wins Award for Recycling Initiative (February 2020)

  • Background: ODEL's private souvenir label LUV SL was recently awarded the Melting Point Certification by the Sri Lankan Central Environmental Authority (CEA) for its innovative Aluminum upcycling project. 
  • Description: The LUV SL collects used aluminum cans in bulk, which are melted down, casted and converted into a range of attractive products such as jewellery, accessories and household items. 
  • Impact: Although Aluminum is the third most abundant element in the earths crust, the production and disposal of it pollutes the environment and consumes unsustainable amounts of energy. Through the project, the CEA and ODEL hope to spread the message that many lives can be improved by upcycling valuable waste like aluminum.

Photos courtesy of LUV SL

Selfridges - To Ban All Plastic-based Glitter from Beauty Hall (January 2020)

  • Background: Selfridges has pledged to remove all plastic-based cosmetic glitter in its stock by 2021.
  • Description: The store is working closely with 300 brands and beauty suppliers, to remove the microplastic ingredient from its Beauty products. The decision was made when research from One Poll found that 64% of Brits were unaware that glitter contains microplastic particles. Selfridges already offers alternatives: biodegradable cosmetic eco-glitter. 
  • Impact: Reducing the impact and leak of microplastic particles into waterways and ocean, which is harmful to wildlife and can even end up in our body through the food chain.

Photos courtesy of Selfridges

Holt Renfrew - H-Project Approved Program (December 2019)

  • Background: Holt Renfrew has unveiled a new icon program named H Project Approved, in an effort to help customers make socially responsible choices when shopping.
  • Description: The icon program is an extension of Holt Renfrew’s H Project concept—a dedicated space in-stores and via that sells a conscious curation of responsible products. The program consists of one, overarching H Project Approved icon, and a series of sub-icons that clearly identify why a product is deserving of the accreditation. It includes: Artisanal, Responsible Material, Charitable, Clean Beauty and Clean Beauty+. 
  • Impact: Helping customers make well-informed purchases by clearly identifying products that are either less harmful to the environment, or makes a positive contribution to society through supporting charities and craftsmanship.

Photos courtesy of Holt Renfrew

Selfridges - Bans Single-use Beauty Wipes (November 2019)

  • Background: Selfridges has banned all single-use, plastic-based beauty wipes from its Beauty Halls and is replacing them with recyclable or reusable alternatives in a bid to encourage sustainable purchases.
  • Description: Beauty wipes are incredibly popular: researchers found that 20% of consumers use them at least once a day, and 35% consider single-use beauty wipes a beauty necessity. In addition, 13% flush single-use wipes down the toilet which can end up on the beaches and ocean if it doesn’t clog sewage and waterways first. Furthermore, a Middlesex University study estimates that plastic-based single-use wipes can take up to 100 years to fully degrade — but only 19% of consumers are aware of this. During a recent Selfridges team beach clean, the volunteers saw first-hand the impact wipes have on local waterways and beaches and the team felt even more motivated to remove them from the stores.
  • Impact: Empowering customers with knowledge and choice of environmentally-friendly alternatives from the retailer including Face HaloSarah Chapman Professional Cleansing Mitts, and Clinique’s Take the Day Off Cleansing Cloths all reusable make-up removers that quickly removes makeup and can replace up to 500 single-use wipes.

Photos courtesy of Selfridges

Woolworths - Plastic Alternatives for Household Products (November 2019)

  • Background: Woolworths has reformulated its current Earth Friendly products and expanded the range to include a total of 24 eco-cleaning and seven plastic-alternative household items.
  • Description: The Earth Friendly line takes advantage of the latest advances that have been made in formulating highly effective cleaning products that are free of potentially harmful substances such as chlorine, phosphates, dyes or parabens, triclosan and artificial colours. Using only active ingredients that are endorsed by Beauty Without Cruelty (BWC), the latest range now covers every aspect of household cleaning and laundry. Furthermore, the packaging is fully recyclable and several packaging features are notable firsts for household cleaning in South Africa.
  • Impact: Reducing consumption of non-recyclable/hard-to-recycle single-use plastic packaging; Creating effective cleaning products free from potentially harmful substances. 

Photos courtesy of Woolworths

Selfridges - Doubles Sustainable Labelling Scheme (October 2019)

Photo courtesy of Selfridges

Galeria Karstadt Kaufhof - Goodbye to Plastic Bags (September 2019)

  • Background: Galeria Karstadt Kaufhof is halting the use of plastic bags throughout the entire department store group.
  • Description: The decision to refrain from using plastic bags applies to the entire group: for all Karstadt and Kaufhof department stores, sports stores, as well as for its subsidiaries in the food and gastronomy sector. The goal is to continuously reduce the last stocks of disposable plastic bags within the first half of 2020. Meanwhile, the company is working on sustainable, reusable packaging solutions.
  • Impact: Reducing the consumption of single-use plastic and finding sustainable, reusable alternatives

Photo courtesy of Galeria Karstadt Kaufhof

Holt Renfrew - Hand for the Elephants (September 2019)

  • Background: For the second year, Holt Renfrew's H Project is partnering with #knotonmyplanet, which works to preserve the elephant population and benefit the Elephant Crisis Fund, an initiative launched by Save the Elephant and the Wildlife Conservation Network in partnership with the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation.
  • Description: The H Project curates apparel, accessories, home decor and beauty products with stories around them. The idea is to highlight artisans around the world and showcase products with an element of sustainability or a charitable component. Model and global ambassador of #knotonmyplanet Doutzen Kroes is also supporting the elephant cause. 
  • Impact: Linking fashion and philantrophy to save elephants

Photos courtesy of Holt Renfrew

IGDS Members - Sign the G7 Fashion Pact (September 2019)

  • Background: Holt RenfrewSelfridges & Co, de Bijenkorf, Brown Thomas Arnotts and Nordstrom have signed the G7 Fashion Pact pledging to improve sustainability standards across the retail industry.
  • Description: Presented to heads of state at the Biarritz G7 Summit in Aug. 2019, the Pact focuses on action in three essential areas for safeguarding the planet: stopping global warming, restoring biodiversity and protecting the oceans. In support of the urgent need to focus on the effects of climate change the IGDS members have joined with 31 other industry leading players to launch an unprecedented movement. This landmark coalition started in April 2019, ahead of the G7 meeting, when the French President Emmanuel Macron, gave François-Henri Pinault, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Kering, a mission to bring together the leading players in fashion and textiles, with the aim of setting practical objectives for reducing the environmental impact of their industry. 
  • Impact: To use Science-Based Targets (SBTi) to take action in three essential areas for safeguarding the plane: Reducing greenhouse emission to zero by 2050, restore biodiversity, and protect the oceans by reducing the fashion industry’s negative impact through practical initiatives, such as gradually removing the usage of single-use plastics.

Photo courtesy of Emanuele Scorcelletti for The Fashion Pact

Nordstrom - Giving 25,000 Shoes To Kids in Need (August 2019)

  • Background: Nordstrom is partnering with its customers and the California Nonprofit of the Year Shoes That Fit to give away 25,000 pairs of brand-new, properly fitting shoes.
  • Description: 1 in 5 American children will experience a level of poverty that has the potential to impede their ability to learn. This includes not having a pair of properly fitting shoes, since shoes can be expensive and children outgrow them quickly. Shoes That Fit's mission is to help ensure that no child misses school because he/she doesn't have shoes that fit. Nordstrom also recognizes the power and confidence a brand new pair of shoes can give to a child in need. As a company that was originally founded as a shoe store, Nordstrom sees the partnership with Shoes That Fit as a way to honour their past, as well as to give back to the local community. 
  • Impact: Nordstrom has donated more than 165,000 pairs of shoes to children in local communities across the U.S. and Puerto Rico with the aim to support students and families to start the school year right with dignity and joy, prepared to learn, play and thrive.

Photos courtesy of Nordstrom

Woolworths - YES Initiative (July 2019)

  • Description: Woolworths is launching its first intake of candidates from the Youth Employment Services (YES) programme, a South African government-led partnership with business, labour and civil society.
  • Background: The YES programme aims to empower 1mn young South Africans by offering paid, quality work experience. Through the YES programme, Woolworths will recruit approximately 450 learners in 108 stores in SA and at their head office for a period of 12 months. Woolworths is privileged and humbled to be a part of YES, which provides the company with an opportunity to reach more young people and address some of the systemic challenges facing the country.
  • Impact: Empowering South African youths, while tackling the some of the country's systemic obstacles. 

Photos courtesy of Woolworths

Selfridges - Eco Paper Gift Cards (July 2019)

  • Background: Selfridges has converted its gift cards from plastic to paper to support its sustainable goals
  • Description: Gift cards always used to be made of paper but converted to plastic some years ago. Selfridges has been one of the most vocal anti-plastic retailers in recent years, and has taken a number of steps to remove huge amounts of single-use plastics from its four UK stores. It has also banned microbeads from beauty products, used recycled coffee cups to make its distinctive yellow bags and launched other sustainable initiatives.
  • Impact: Reducing single-use plastics

Photos courtesy of Selfridges

Woolworths - Winner of Best Sustainable Display (June 2019)

  • Background: A Woolworths window display incorporating milk bottles and plastic hangers has snaped a prestigious global award.
  • Description: Woolworths won the prize for the best sustainable display at the annual Creative Retail Awards in London. The Creative Retail Awards recognise and reward innovation and excellence in retail design from around the world. The festive-season window featured 3D flower artworks, including striking, oversized models of iconic South African proteas - made from discarded plastic. South African women handcrafted the flowers using recycled plastic bottles, plastic cutlery and plastic hangers. 
  • Impact: Turning plastic waste to a creative, award-winning work of art

Photos courtesy of Woolworths

Printemps Paris - Upcycling en Vitrines (April 2019)

  • Background: Giving new life to old materials in an artform
  • Description: From April to May, Printemps is showcasing new patterns of consumption and making shopping more responsible and involved. For the occasion, five artists exhibited their works produced especially for Printemps using upcycled materials. Upcycling en Vitrines is an enjoyable and innovative way of getting to grips with upcycling as part of social responsibility at Printemps.
  • Impact: Original artistic collaborations involving artists from all over the world to display their works using upcycled materials in the store windows.

Photos courtesy of Printemps

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