This post was produced in partnership with ZONE by Lydia. Please note that, as an ethical creative, all thoughts and opinions always have and always will be entirely my own.
There are two spaces I visit where I feel in flow and in the zone – in the forest and on my yoga mat. The latter I know for sure is shared by Australian Olympic gold medallist and the creator of ZONE by Lydia, Lydia Lassila.
A reasonably new brand to the Australian ethical and sustainable fashion space, ZONE by Lydia was created to help us get in the ‘zone’, whether on the mat or off, more consciously and mindfully, for the benefit of people and the planet.
The ZONE Story
Lydia Lassila’s story about the creation of ZONE is a fascinating and moving one. Spending most of her life as an elite athlete, Lydia discovered yoga in 2012 while she was suffering from a back injury. For Lydia, as with many of us who practice yoga, yoga is her medicine, and her yoga mat – amongst other beautiful places – is her sanctuary.
For those who’ve practiced yoga, meditation, mindfulness, breathwork, sport, music, writing, or similar, you’ll know the feeling of being ‘in the zone’. The state of flow and presence.
The drive to help others to find the zone, no matter where they are, is the ‘why’ behind this conscious brand. It’s about helping to foster awareness within ourselves and for our surroundings – helping people to live better physically, mentally, emotionally, and environmentally.
“The yoga mat is my sanctuary, a place where my stress, worries and sweat melt away and a place where I nurture and nourish my body and mind.”– Lydia Lassila
Social Ethics & Sustainability
ZONE by Lydia’s hemp clothing range is ethically and sustainably made in China at Hemp Fortex from seed to garment. Hemp Fortex has a range of certifications including GOTS, ECOCERT, and Fair Wear.
When it comes to garment worker rights and empowerment, the Fair Wear certification is the one to really look out for here. Fair Wear certifies that the workers who make the ZONE by Lydia range:
– Freely choose their employment
– Have freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining
– Aren’t discriminated against by race, nationality, gender, sex, religion, ability and are given equal opportunities
– Aren’t children
– Are paid a living wage (at least legal or industry minimum standards and sufficient to meet the basic needs of the workers)
– Work reasonable hours
– Work in safe and healthy conditions
– Have a legally binding employment relationship
The fashion industry has a terrible and recent history with garment worker exploitation. While we must take precautions to ensure our clothes are made in a way that doesn’t harm the planet, it’s just as essential to consider “Who made my clothes?”.
You can read more about ZONE by Lydia’s social ethics and sustainability here.
Environmental Ethics & Sustainability
ZONE by Lydia has been inspired by nature and has environmental awareness at the root of the brand. This is reflected not only through manufacturing with Hemp Fortex, who use clean energy across all their offices and factories (and who are certified with Textile Exchange, GOTS, ECOCERT, and Fair Wear), but also in ZONE’s choice of fabric and in the extra measures taken by the brand to ensure sustainability.
Hemp & Organic Cotton Fabrics
ZONE’s certified organic hemp and cotton fabrics are sourced and made sustainably in China at Hemp Fortex. Lydia explains that she chose hemp for its sustainability, as it can be harvested three times a year, requires very little water to grow, doesn’t use pesticides, and is an incredible CO2 sequester. Practically, hemp is also 8 times stronger than cotton, antibacterial, soft, and breathable. Hemp is about as good as fabrics can get! While I was chatting with Lydia about her production, she expressed her desire to source and make her hemp clothing in Australia. She explained that here, we simply don’t have the infrastructure to spin the fibre into yarn yet. The brand is, however, looking at making their future garments in Australia.
Single-use Plastic Free
The brand recognises the harm plastics are creating in our world. While some pieces in their clothing range contain a small amount of spandex (made from plastic yet essential for stretch and durability, which is an element of sustainability in its own way), ZONE has mindfully chosen the materials in all its ranges to eliminate as many plastics as possible. Their sustainable Cork Yoga Range and eco-friendly packaging are completely plastic-free, and they ship their clothing in compostable packaging.
ZONE by Lydia is working towards carbon neutrality as of June 2021 (but I hear they will be carbon neutral certified with Climate Neutral very shortly!). This means that they will be able to offset their emissions by investing in projects that are helping to regenerate the planet. The brand is not only striving to be carbon neutral but are making it their aim to be carbon negative. I love the work they are doing!
You can read more about ZONE by Lydia’s environmental ethics and sustainability here.
The Hemp Range (that I’ve worn!)
ZONE by Lydia’s hemp clothing range is gender-neutral, easy to wear, innovative, and comfortable. I love that the range shares its character in the fabric, shape, and design of the pieces, keeping the branding soft, the colours minimal, and the styles easy to mix and match. These will be pieces that I will continue to love and that are effortless to wear with many other items in my wardrobe, which is a hugely important factor when creating a sustainable closet.
The Hemp Drop Crotch Pant
This is the first pair of drop crotch pants I’ve ever owned and I’m so glad I went for them. I’ve worn them for a hike, working from home, and as PJ pants. After all this wear so far, I’m happy to report that they really are so versatile and comfortable, and have wonderfully deep pockets!
The Hemp Cropped Hoodie
I love my high-rise jeans and leggings, yet I can sometimes feel a bit daggy when I pop a big jumper over the top of them, so I was thrilled to discover ZONE’s cropped hoodie. I think the style is fantastic and I love the drop shoulder. Living in a warmer climate, I like how the fabric isn’t too thick, while the style is easy to layer for those colder days.
The Hemp Tee
A basic that I think will be perfect for my yoga practice over the years to come. ZONE’s Hemp Tee is simple, practical, and elegant. The organic hemp and cotton blend feels incredibly lightweight yet durable. If you’re looking for an essential tee for sports or everyday wear, this is it.
The Hemp Bike Short
I absolutely adore ZONE’s bike shorts… and in this colour! The slight flecks of white throughout the sand fabric create a beautiful texture. If I had to pick a favourite from their collection, these would be it.
When first trying them on, I was concerned they would be tight around the waistband. To my happy surprise, they were the perfect fit. Not suffocating – just snug enough. Effortless, comfortable, and the perfect length. 5 stars!
Other eco-conscious ranges
ZONE by Lydia also carries a range of sustainable cork yoga gear and essential oils, which are aligned with the mission of the brand. Check out the cork yoga and essential oils ranges to uplift your yoga space and support your practice.
You can find ZONE by Lydia at:
Overall, I’m incredibly impressed with what ZONE by Lydia is offering the fashion industry and it’s easy to tell their pieces were designed thoughtfully by someone who would wear them. I’m excited to see how the brand grows and develops in the years to come. In the meantime, let’s find our ZONE, wherever and whenever we can.
Where do you feel in the ZONE? Leave a comment, I’d love to know!