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Friday, June 14, 2024

Style from Design

From the elements of the Earth to our wardrobes, finding eco-friendly clothing with a conscience can be challenging. In a world where consumerism calls for near-constant textile turnover, discovering a company with heart is encouraging for both our wallets and our planet.

Little Yogi stands out as a powerhouse of eco-conscious and gender-neutral children’s clothing, designed to be cherished for years and be passed down from one generation to the next. The mission of the company is to provide a world of equal opportunity for every child, regardless of gender or sex. “We democratize colors and eliminate gender stereotypes,” explains Nancy Caouette, founder of Little Yogi. Available in select Quebec children’s boutiques, the Canadian-based brand’s robust website and global shipping options have led to a dedicated consumer base across the U.S. and beyond.

Images provided by Little Yogi.

Caouette came of age in a creative environment—her mother, an expert seamstress, inspired imaginative handiwork. In 2016, Caouette noticed the juxtaposition of gendered children’s clothing while surrounded by pregnant family and friends. Teaming up with her mother, the duo began combining textiles to create innovative designs, which then became the basis of Little Yogi. After months of product development and dedication, Caouette pivoted career paths from her passion for therapy into developing her very own eco-conscious clothing brand. “I had no entrepreneurial experience,” Caouette said. “I did, however, have years of university education that had imbued me with rigor, organization, planning, data analysis, and, most importantly, intellectual curiosity… We went from cutting a few pieces of pants with our scissors, to discovering industrial processes, to making clothes in my garage and in my mother’s basement, before moving on to large garment shops.”

Little Yogi makes use of eco-friendly materials in all of their products and packaging, including 100% organic cotton and bamboo fabrics, organic and repurposed textiles, and non-toxic, water-based inks. The line is ECOCERT certified, exemplifying the brand’s commitment to sustainably-minded practices from concept to completion. “Our labels can be planted in the ground and our envelopes are compostable,” said Caouette. “Each piece of clothing is a small work of art, as it is the result of the work of a different artist. We are developing patterns that last 4 to 6 times longer than a regular garment found in a department store.” Patterns depicting endangered animals, seasonal motifs, and color block choices illuminate the ingenuity and the modern mind of Little Yogi. Featuring vibrant colors and patterns, the Little Yogi collection includes shirts, hoodies, shorts, harem pants, two-piece sets, rompers, dresses, and a conglomeration of items for newborns like onesies and muslins. 

Images provided by Little Yogi.

With sizing options from 0-6m all the way up to 5-7T, the clothing is designed to fit a wide range of ages, from babies to five-year-olds.“We are fortunate to have a great community of parents, of people who gravitate towards children and want to make a difference,” Caouette said of the company’s main mission and outreach. “Our clothes are a medium of communication.” Brand favorites include its harem pants  –  described as having a “grow with me” style that makes use of adjustable waist and ankle circumferences, allowing plenty of wiggle room for growing kids  –  as well as the rompers.

“It is truly amazing to see how Little Yogi has created a place for itself in the world of children’s fashion in Quebec,” said Caouette. “I think what really sets us apart are the deep values of the brand, and the cohesion of those values in everything we do. We stay true to ourselves, to our playful, colorful, dashing world. We want children to stay children for as long as possible. After all, they will have their whole lives to grow up.” The vast majority of the Little Yogi line are Canadian-made from beginning to end, although their knitwear products are sourced from the Zhejiang province of China, “where all workers are over 18 and have decent and respectful working conditions” according to Little Yogi’s website.

Caouette’s three young children, Sydney, June, and Marley, inspire her daily and live out the creatively conscious mission that Little Yogi sets out to accomplish. “Let’s just say that intensity is part of my life,” she said.

For more information and to shop the collection visit www.littleyogicompany.com/en/.


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