You probably know by now that I have a passion for supporting local but, having worked for a fairtrade, sustainable clothing brand, I also have an immense respect for fashion that positively impacts our planet.
I connected with Koda Collective on Instagram and immediately wanted to spread awareness about their mission. Founder Josiah Crocker describes Koda Collective as an online boutique that has its roots in the Toronto fashion industry; they provide their customers with an easy way to shop for fashionable designs that support local communities, work with several sustainable brands with inspiring stories and donate 10% of their proceeds to charity.
I wondered what inspired Josiah to create this online boutique and why he believes community-based retail is so important. He explained that “more people are becoming frustrated with the status quo of not knowing where their money actually goes and who it’s supporting. With the wealth gap being the widest it’s ever been, mass amounts of disparity have spread through North America (and other parts of the world) and people want more transparency and equality.”
Josiah believes that community-based retail is a direct response to three consumer demands: empowerment, transparency and sustainable wealth. Shopping local lets the consumer choose who to support like “your neighbours, your friends and, maybe even more importantly, people who are directly invested in bettering your area.” While big box stores overwhelm and undercut small businesses and hollow out downtown cores, “local businesses plant their roots in communities and, as such, they want to see that community grow just as much as you do.”
Koda Collective also has a global initiative, the Koda Karma program; it donates 10% of all proceeds to a carefully vetted charity called The Rainforest Trust which primarily protects the rainforest and countless species through purchasing land and limiting deforestation. Josiah believes that this top-rated charity is consistent with Koda’s position in the marketplace: “When you buy something from Koda, you aren’t just doing good in your local community, you’re voting for a better future. A legacy of positive change and a better world for everyone.”
So, what does Koda Collective offer the conscious consumer? Apart from knowing that each purchase benefits the planet, Josiah describes it as a complete shopping experience for Canadian brands: “You have the ability on Koda to buy a garment or accessory from every single brand on our site in one single shopping cart if you want to. There’s no directory aspect to it, or fragmented shopping experience. What you see on our site is all available right then and there with one single order.” Koda Collective does not inflate the prices of their products from the brand websites.
“Shop Local Think Global.”— Josiah Crocker
What does the future have in store for Koda Collective? Josiah’s vision includes expanding nation-wide into a variety of sectors including beauty, skincare, home decor and artisanal work, while encouraging the manufacturing of apparel within Canada. Continuing to support the Koda Karma program is another important objective and Josiah hopes to raise in excess of 100k for the charity and sponsor a special trip to the Rainforest for some of his followers. To put it simply, “we want to provide Canadians with a way to shop anything they need locally, conveniently and while making the biggest impact on the world around them.”
For more information on Koda Collective, check out their site below. Readers can use the code “EMMAVIP” for 10% off their order.