The monks of La Trappe are getting a style upgrade, thanks to G-Star Raw.
The Dutch denim brand partnered with the Trappists of Koningshoeven Abbey (also known as La Trappe), a monk-led brewery in The Netherlands, to design a habit—a monk’s hooded cape-like uniform—using Cradle to Cradle (C2C) Gold Certified denim. The 100 percent organic cotton fabric is dyed without the use of harmful chemicals and washed without any water.
According to Father Isaac, prior and director of the brewery, the habits the monks wear are “essentially our temple,” making it crucial that they are ethically and sustainably made. “When I receive a habit, I’m aware of how much love and care went into making it,” he said in a video posted to G-Star’s YouTube page. “It’s not some mass-produced garment.”
G-Star’s dedication to using natural resource-saving methods is what initially prompted the partnership, as La Trappe creates its product under the concept of austerity, silence and the duty of charity. La Trappe donates part of its proceeds to charities and works closely with foundations to offer work to locals. The brewery also helps an abbey in Uganda to organize and support agricultural, educational and health care projects.
Along with generating its own solar electricity, the brewery sources its own water for brewing and returns it to the source using its own biological water treatment. La Trappe also purchases raw materials from local farmers and repurposes residual products into animal feed.
“I do feel we have something of a shared vision,” Father Isaac said about G-Star Raw. “I feel it’s incredibly important to be able to pass this planet on to a future generation.”
No stranger to this sentiment, G-Star Raw is known for its commitment to sustainability and circularity. Last April, the brand launched a men’s and women’s collection made with the C2C Certified Gold Melfort Denim O, a lightweight fabric with an irregular slub character and nap texture inspired by jeans from the 1950s. The 100 percent organic cotton fabric is dyed in a vibrant red cast indigo derived from RFTPi-Raw for the Planet Indigo, G-Star’s dye process using 15 percent less indigo, 70 percent less chemicals, no salts, and produces no salt by-product during the reduction and dyeing process.
“At G-Star, we’re always looking for unexpected collaborations,” said Gwenda Van Vliet, G-Star Raw chief marketing officer. “At La Trappe, you can see they don’t just make the easy choices—they make the best choices.”
The “unexpected” collaboration with La Trappe is one of many. In September, the denim brand tapped rapper Snoop Dogg to front its Hardcore Denim campaign set to a custom-made version of his single, “Say it Witcha Booty.” G-Star also worked with Hollywood stuntwoman Sarah Lezito to showcase its Fall/Winter 21-22 range of jeans with Western and motorcycle influences.