The Quiet Luxury of &Or Collective

The Canadian clothing brand is all about building a sustainable wardrobe.

&Or Collective

Montreal-based sustainable clothing brand &Or Collective wants you to be eco-conscious with your wardrobe. The Canadian label is the brainchild of Katie Green and Kristen King, Montreal and Toronto natives who first met 10 years ago when both were working at L’Oréal. Combining style and responsibility, &Or’s knitwear for men and women are “anyplace essentials,” Green says. “Those hardworking staples that you reach for over and over in the wardrobe is what we aim to accomplish.”

Of the 100 billion garments produced annually, 92 million tonnes of it ends up in landfills. “Sustainable apparel is one of the more challenging categories for us to enter, but it also is one that is in the most need of change,” Green notes.

At the core of &Or’s designs is a Stoll technical knitting machine similar to a 3D printer. Fed by a string of yarn, it knits an entire front or back panel of a garment in one continuous piece, resulting in less than 1 per cent of textile waste—compared to 15 per cent in a traditional cut-and-sew technique. “The machines are essentially programmed to knit with as minimal waste as possible,” King explains. Natural yarns are Global Organic Textile Standard-certified organic cotton and Responsible Wool Standard-certified wool, while synthetic yarns are made from recycled materials, although &Or is working to reduce its use of synthetics over time.


Canadian Fashion Brand &Or Collective


The technical knitting machine allows creative director Rosa Halpern to create timeless designs that are as stylish as they are sustainable. Halpern introduced the concept to Green and King in the brand’s beginning stages. “It was the moment that unlocked for us the whole idea really coming together,” King says.

The fashion industry is complex and saturated. “It’s inherently not sustainable to launch a fashion brand, and we’re not blind to that statement, but for us it was knowing that people will continue to wear clothing,” Green says. The first collection featured simple mix-and-match pieces for men and women, from shorts and tops to skirts and dresses. The fall collection added a wool coat, jacket, and trousers. Partnering with SuperCircle’s fibre-to-fibre recycling program, &Or will take unwanted clothing to ensure responsible disposal.

“Green says they saw the trend going in the direction of quality over quantity, of thoughtful choices that can be worn multiple ways. The brand’s name represents the duality of styling each piece, whether for a swanky party or mundane activities: And/Or.”


Sustainable fashion brand &Or Collective Canada