A Q&A WITH ALEXANDRA WESTON
Author: Erica Bartle Date Posted: 10 May 2018
Outland Denim is proud to be a part of Holt Renfrew's H Project - a speciality department of extraordinary products with extraordinary stories.
Standing for Humanity, Health and Habitat, H Project evolved out of the store's designer collaboration program as a way to start giving back locally and abroad.
Curated from around the world, H Project's products are all socially responsible by way of where they were made, by whom, with what materials and how they give back.
Alexandra Weston, Holt Renfrew's Director of Brand and Creative Strategy, gives us an insight into the growth of H Project at the luxury Canadian department store.
OD: Can you tell us who or what inspired you to start H Project in 2013, because at that time the words "sustainability" and "ethical fashion" weren't common parlance in fashion?
AW: I grew up with retail as part of my family, at that point through travel. I fell in love with animals, environments and the amazing people and cultures I saw around the world. I wanted so badly for all of my passions – fashion, retail, environment, and culture – to work together, not fight each other as they traditionally do. It was this desire that birthed the concept of H Project as a way to use the power and platform of retail to create positive change in the world. It came out of the belief that fashion can be a strong catalyst for good. I, now we, want to show people the positive impacts their purchasing decisions can make, and we hope this will empower people to ask more of their brands and empower them to make smarter choices.
OD: How did your customers receive H Project?
AW: Like any new concept it takes time to take hold; it takes time to get the message out and to teach customers. H Project has been around now for 5 years and each year that passes we grow a little bigger, a little stronger, and our customers and brands are starting to see us as a place to discover responsible, well-curated products. 2017 was our best year since launch, so, thanks to our customers, we are moving in the right direction.