SIRPLUS is founded on the belief that waste is, quite simply, too wasteful.
Henry Hales made an interesting discovery whilst plotting to take over the men’s underwear market. He discovered that shirt-makers often end up with a surplus of fabric, enough to make plenty of pretty incredible boxers. So, SIRPLUS was born.
Over the last ten years, we have grown from a street market stall selling boxers to multiple stores selling a full range, with a constant connection to this central idea. As awareness has grown around the need to think of the planet when we make our purchases, we have followed suit and adopted more fabrics into the fray - all with a lack of waste in mind. We design with a vision of your clothes lasting longer, being worn more often and adapting to a variety of seasons, doing some good in the process. Here’s a guide to our top eco-friendly picks.
Oldie but a goodie
Our first foray into recycling was using ‘deadstock’ or surplus - offcuts and unwanted fabrics which would otherwise go to landfill. We filter through for the best and highest quality, many from top designer names. And Henry’s still at it today, most of our Cotton and Silk Boxers, Dressing Gowns and Outerwear are made from the finest surplus fabrics.
However, we’ve evolved over the years too, with this principle at the forefront of our design process.
This season’s champions? Our new chore jacket selection. The Deep Indigo Chore is made in England from a carefully selected Italian surplus denim - washed indigo with a ribbed finish.
When we aren’t using surplus, we are still making statements with our fabric choice. The Stone Twill Chore Jacket is made from 100% BCI cotton. The Better Cotton Initiative is helping farmers to grow cotton in a way that reduces stress on the local environment and improves the livelihoods and welfare of farming communities, BCI aims to create long-term change. We wholeheartedly agree.
Best foot forward
Expanding our range came with the increase in our use of organic cotton. Organic cotton aims to minimise the environmental impact of cotton production by trying to remove harmful pesticides and other chemicals from the production process, whilst remaining a wonderfully light and breathable fabric.
You will spot organic across the whole range, from our soft, Organic T-shirts and Boxer Briefs, to our shirts and all-new Polo Shirts. Our staple White Oxford Grandad Shirt is made from a soft, brushed organic cotton (complete with bio-degradable buttons) and the new Pale Blue Cotton Linen Shirts are an organic linen-cotton blend. Organic cotton is also perfect for toes, try our 100% organic cotton Pale Pink Socks and make a statement in more ways than one.
Another perfect partner for your feet is Bamboo. Our Navy Stripe Socks are spun from bamboo, a naturally antibacterial and highly sustainable material - a winning combination.
Have I seen you before?
We already know organic cotton, but linen is another more eco-friendly fabric choice. It requires minimal water and every part of the plant is used, so nothing is wasted. Putting these together is an obvious choice for us, but this season we’ve gone one step further by introducing recycled cotton into the mix. Recycled or up-cycled cotton is made using post-industrial and post-consumer cotton waste. It has the potential to help reduce water and energy consumption, as well as help keep cotton clothes out of the landfill – which is why we consider it an essential in our design process.
Corozo Nut. You’ll be happy to know we’ve eliminated all plastic buttons across our shirting (and are almost there with the rest of the range). Instead, we like using natural materials that do some good. Corozo comes from the Tagua tree that grows in the lowland rainforests of Ecuador Peru, Columbia and Panama. The nuts fall to the floor when ripe, so can only be taken when they are good and ready. Corozo is also called vegetable ivory because of its similarity to real ivory. So as well as being a renewable source, it discourages ivory hunting too. You can shop all our Corozo nut numbers here.
Kind is cool
We feature Corozo buttons on our new line of Cuban Shirts, so you can be stylish, make a statement of kindness and stay cool this summer. The stand out star is our Positano Print Camp Collar Shirt - a watercolour painting of an Italian coastal town printed on soft and fluid EcoVero™, a sustainable fabric made from renewable wood pulp. An eco-responsible production process that meets high environmental standards, the shirt is tailored for a summer’s day and a cleaner environment too.
P.S - there’s more!
In keeping with our belief in not being wasteful, our clothing labels are transitioning to recycled polyester and our swing tags are transitioning to bamboo paper. Plus, instead of in-store purchases being carried away in temporary bags, your new investment piece is carried away in a reusable SIRPLUS tote bag (you’re welcome).