"We are Lebenskleidung – a fabric-loving company from Berlin-Kreuzberg. Our credo "More Than Fabrics" should sound not only beautiful, but essentially expresses what is important to us: We love and live sustainability and not only in the production of your fabrics"
We are Enrico, Ben, Christoph, Jeanette, Johanna, Nadja, Rabea, Thomas and Catharina. Every day we work in small teams to produce fair, sustainable materials, to present them in the right light and finally to send them out to the world. Johanna and Enrico take care of the sourcing of our fabrics and are therefore the heart of Lebenskleidung. They develop innovative, beautiful fabrics and regularly visit our producers in Portugal, Turkey or Germany – a very personal sourcing department. Of course, they also ensure that production processes run as smoothly as possible. Then, Jeanette takes a close look at each fabric in the department of quality management and checks transaction certificates and communication with GOTS. In our Berlin office she also manages our warehouse sale, where there is not only fabrics per kilogram, but also the best music – and one or the other nice conversation...
We launch two collections a year – in Spring and Fall. Most of our fabrics are made of 100% GOTS-certified cotton, which we then turn with our production partners to make beautiful, durable fabrics. Classic and timeless Jersey or Sweat fabrics are complemented by innovative fabrics that sometimes dare – always keeping an eye on the respective trend colors of the seasons.
"Of course, we do all of that because we firmly believe that we can make the world a little better and that we have to think outside the box as well."
When the journey of our fabrics is over and they arrive, our journey is far from over. Because in our daily work, we not only plan fabric collections, but are honorary members of various associations such as the Bundesverband Nachhaltige Wirtschaft e.V., a cross-industry green association that sees itself as a productive and strong network of sustainable businesses that can actually have political influence.
Once a year, we are at the Green Fashion Consortium in India, an international conference that we have supported and enriched with lectures for years. Even in the choice of our food, we are pretty green. Our vegetable box comes from the Ökohof Brodowin north of Berlin and also our office is as sustainable as possible thanks to electricity from Polarstern, all sorts of utensils from the eco-office supplier ‘Memo’, and a small forest of plants.
You don’t believe that? Then come by, get to know us and our office – and discover our fabrics!
Oh, how time flies. It is already more than 10 years ago when Lebenskleidung was founded in 2008. Since then a lot has happened and our little venture has blossomed into a pubescent child. We hope the little Berlin brat behaves in the coming years as well.
Benjamin is the co-founder of Lebenskleidung and has been with us from the beginning. He studied German, politics and human geography and lived for several years in Denmark and India - years that were formative for him. In Kerala in southern India, where he spent two semesters abroad, he encountered things he could no longer forget. The extent of the global textile industry, the consequences for those we see far too seldom, and ultimately the question of what can be done to live more sustainably, became clear to him here for the first time in all their urgency. And they are also what laid the foundation for the Lebenskleidung project.
Ben likes to travel, is still regularly in India and is very active in general. He is an eloquent speaker and therefore, not for nothing, often the one who informs and engages with the audience at the numerous global talks and conferences we attend. He is also interested in a wide range of topics. Whether it's current political events or the latest Bundesliga results. In life, Ben keeps it true to the motto of Jiddu Krishnamurti: "It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society."
Enrico is a real nature boy. He was born in Storkow, Brandenburg, surrounded by forests and lakes - and the good school of natural history, which that must have been, can still be felt today. We owe to him not only the beautiful office greenery, but also the probably largest fund of knowledge about everything that has to do with sustainability - from the most delicious food to the best daily moisturizer. No wonder, because since 2004, for him everything revolves around ecologically beautiful things. When Enrico was 19, he ended up in the German capital, where he still lives today. His and Ben's paths intersected during the simultaneous exchange year in India, and it quickly became clear that they wanted to make a difference together.
After completing his studies in human geography and environmental education after 22 semesters, Enrico became a stable part of Lebenskleidung and has been one of the faces behind our sourcing ever since. He regularly visits our producers, plans new fabrics and luckily dares to think outside the box. The fact that he can identify every bird immediately on the vocals, that his heart beats for electronic music, and that he serves up the best sour eggs in Brandenburg, are of course extra bonus points, without which we in the Lebenskleidung Office would definitely not have the great time we do have.
Christoph is from Brandenburg as Enrico - and so it makes sense that he and Enrico know each other since their childhood. He comes from Bornow, which is only a stone's throw away from Storkow, but he too was magically attracted to the magnet Berlin someday. Today he lives with bag and baggages in the north of Berlin and, the sportsman he is, cycles tirelessly every day to work and back again. Christoph is a graduate in business administration and therefore more than perfect in his role as a man of finances at Lebenskleidung. When he's not juggling numbers or pervading complicated Excel spreadsheets, he likes to talk shop about good coffee or meat. Yes, that’s right - once a year he is there when a pig, which of course had a wonderful life in the fresh air before, is slaughtered. Nose to tail, of course! That makes us happy too, because our almost exclusively vegetarian lunch menu is supplemented in this way with a few delicious portions of organic meat.
We would not be where we are without the great team at Lebenskleidung. We are proud that almost all team members initially did internships with us, which - to our greatest delight - have become permanent employment contracts. On our way, we have also been accompanied by many wonderful people, whom we would like to thank at this point.
Nadja had, except for a general affinity for beautiful fashion, not too much to do with fabrics before she came to Lebenskleidung. After studying literature and French in Dresden, she moved to Berlin for her Master's programme. She studied Philosophy and Aesthetics at Viadrina and just returned from America as part of the subsequent Doctor (which is now resting, unfortunately) when she met Ben at a release party of a sustainable magazine.
Somehow, one thing led to another and so she writes in 2016 chord text for life clothes.Newsletters and blog are as much a part of it as are social media or contributions to the webshop - they can literally let off steam lyrically. Nadja likes to talk a lot, loves movies, food and kombucha and works as a volunteer German teacher. Musically, she manages the balancing act between the other Lebenskleidung members: Italo-Pop is just as good for her as hard techno.
Jeanette is a clothing technician with body and soul - although that sounds much stale than it is. She comes from the beautiful Westerwald and after completing her schooling first trained as a fashion seamstress and immediately afterwards studied clothing technology and product development at the University of Applied Sciences Niederrhein in Mönchengladbach. After that, she worked for two years at an online retailer in the goods receipt, before she finally came to Berlin.
She was a trainee at Lebenskleidung, but she became quite popular in the blink of an eye and nobody could imagine a life without her anymore. And that's the way it has remained. She takes care of the quality management, the customer service and the constant recertification by GOTS, manages the warehouse sales and also supports Johanna in the collection planning. She loves good pop hits and probably would have been able to target a career as a singer as well. But she prefers beautiful fabrics, which she sews regularly to trendy pieces at home - if she does not read into art-historical topics or carries out her newly purchased bike.
Johanna has been with Lebenskleidung for a little eternity. She first graduated in Geography, Anthropology and Urban Planning in Cologne and later went to Greifswald, where she completed her master's thesis on the conventional clothing industry and sustainable fashion. In other words, she was made for the job she is now doing at Lebenskleidung! In the main, this is the sourcing, which includes the tracking of current trend colors and qualities as well as regular producer visits. In short: Without her, our collection would not be what it is! By the way, she is also very stylish in private - and she likes to use her sewing machine to implement her own ideas.
Also important - Johanna does not exist without Tuuli, our office dog, that stops at nothing (cuddle attacks!). In addition, she is a real sporting ace and, so to speak, always on the move, be it bouldering, surfing or traveling in the VW mobile. Sustainability and ecological issues are of course important to her, and so she defended the Hambach Forest sovereignly for the 2018 mass demonstration