campaign against black friday

Amsterdam, 24 November 2017 – Today, companies from all different spheres will be taking part in Black Friday, with enormous discounts on their products to give customers the best bargain. For fashion brands, it's a day that creates record turnovers. Something no company wants to miss out on. Except Unrobe. The clothing brand won't be having a Black Friday, but instead, are coming up with a different campaign.

The collapse of the Rana Plaza in Bangladesh in 2013 which saw over 1100 people killed, and the recent cries for help in clothing tags from factory workers in Turkey expose the fashion industry’s dark side. Low wages, long working days, dangerous working environments and exploitation are an everyday reality. This system is kept alive by the continuous supply and demand of cheap clothing. In the current market situation quantity is often preferred over quality, and with Black Friday comes as a climax.  The industry reaches its lowest point, because it is simply impossible to produce responsible clothing on such discounted clothing that is already low-priced.  

It’s a disturbing development, according to Koen Warmerdam and Daan Ubachs, owners of Unrobe. They’re aiming to raise awareness to this worrying state of the fashion industry with a new campaign. The duo want to bring to the attention of consumers that cheap clothes are often at the expense of others, and to encourage people to be more critical about the origin and price of pieces. “If you think about it, then you know that most of the time it is not possible”, says Koen Warmerdam. “When clothing becomes cheaper than cheap on Black Friday, then someone’s always gotta pay for it”, Ubachs adds. A photographer friend shot the picture of the campaign in a sweatshop in Dhaka, Bangladesh. 

No sale on Black Friday

Unrobe won’t be having any sale on Black Friday. The fashion brand has a direct-to-consumer business model, which reflects in its standard lower, but fair prices. Dressing people by undressing the industry is the mission of the online clothing brand that launched last August in Amsterdam. They challenge the fashion industry on sustainability, ethical production and transparency by being hyper transparent about sourcing and pricing. They show exactly where and by whom their clothes are made. “In a time where consumers are more conscious about food and the environment, it’s strange that people will buy a T-shirt without being critical about its price and origin”, says Warmerdam. 

The campaign launches today and Unrobe hopes it creates awareness in a big way. Ubachs: “Only together can we improve and change the fashion industry. Lets start with Black Friday.”