The Maiyet Collective launched its debut event in the Conduit Club, Mayfair last month and will continue to curate monthly retail experiences to showcase positive impact luxury brands with a passionate focus on sustainability. This immersive eco retail space includes ready-to-wear, fine jewellery, beauty, home and lifestyle products and regular events include bespoke talks and demos from makers and creators, workshops and storytelling. We were thrilled to have been chosen to showcase our A.S.APOTHECARY skincare.
The Maiyet ethos is admirable:
“We believe in the power of collaboration. Through our collective voice, we aim to educate, inspire and create a community of people who are committed to changing the way we think, create and acquire fashion. Maiyet is a modern, ethical fashion brand that seeks to promote dignity and sustainability across the globe. We believe that fashion has an unprecedented opportunity and obligation to create positive change.”
The market for positive impact, conscious retail is growing fast. Recent research reveals that 20% of high income millenials seeking to spend their money on luxury items said they always takes ethics into account before making a purchase. 79% of millenials said they would be more likely to engage with a brand that would make a difference.
The term, ‘Uneasy Affluent’ was coined to describe the increasing demographic of wealthy individuals with a desire to shop ethically. This consumer trend is a reaction against the kind of ostentatious spending that characterises a careless and greedy consumerism that damaged the living world in the first place. This collective of high earners want to spend their money in ways that assuage perhaps an uncomfortable awareness of their own wealth. They want to feel they are making a difference, they don’t want to support unethical brands, and they have a lot of leverage. The hand of luxury brands is being forced, and companies desperate to keep profits up are redesigning products and services with sustainability and social issues in mind.
But Founder and CEO Paul van Zyl is motivated by much more than simply recognising a lucrative target market. A former human rights lawyer, whose career to date is an impressive bio of social and political activity, including founding anti-Apartheid and human rights organisations, acting as a consultant and advisor to NGOs and governments on justice issues, before setting up the positive impact fashion label Maiyet in New York, which now sees its most recent incarnation in the Conduit Club. He is only too aware of the ease with which we can talk about issues that matter to us on social media without ever actually doing anything. Describing the Maiyet Collective he says,
“This is us moving things from the echo to the action chamber.”
The space itself is in Mayfair, a 5,000 sq ft store that functions as a recurring pop-up. It is open three days every month from Thursday to Saturday by an appointment-only basis. You can register via The Maiyet Collective website. But the Maiyet team is keen to point out that this is not about elitism but about ensuring that anyone who does visit is provided with the Maiyet experience: a thorough and focused tour of the space, an introduction to its ethos and the crafts people, makers and brands showcased therein.
Maiyet’s mission is one that ensures its producers are paid fairly, it engages with charities to find new artisan partners and build secure factories, it gets involved in communities to support them and has helped artisans acquire the skills and facilities needed to create sustainable businesses. It partnered with the Gobi Revival Fund and worked with the nomad goat herders of Outer Mongolia to create FAIR, the world’s first ethically sourced and environmentally sustainable cashmere yarn. It is has the rare kind of business model that genuinely puts people and planet at least equal to, if not before, profit.
If you’d like to attend the next event in December, sign up at the Maiyet website here: https://maiyet.com/events/