Journal | Dorsu

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Sam Leigh eco.mono true cost

Everyday Advocates: Sam Leigh from eco|mono

April 25, 2018

Everyday Advocates is a new series highlighting collaborators whose ethical values are reflected in their businesses, hobbies, and everyday actions. Here, Sam Leigh from eco|mono discusses the joys and hardships of running an ethical fashion retailer.
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Friends ethical fashion

How to help your friends get into ethical fashion

April 23, 2018

Sustainability advocacy requires year-round action, but few people have the time or opportunity to start a blog, work for an ethical fashion brand, or organise a clothes swap. Luckily, there is one small action we can take to become “micro-influencers” among our friends and family.
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ethical wardrobe essentials

Introducing our new collection: Purpose

April 06, 2018

A collection designed specifically for our Dorsu people with a focus on design and construction detail. All garments are intentionally crafted as versatile pieces that are more than just basics -- they are seasonless, reliable and affordable additions to balance out a considered, cared for, ethical wardrobe.
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Atlassian gender inclusive swag

Dorsu and Atlassian- Gender-inclusive swag

March 14, 2018

What began in 2002 as a small software startup where the founders were determined to wear t-shirts to work, is now the global, multi-billion-dollar company. When Kayla contacted Hanna, Dorsu’s co-founder, wanting to create more gender inclusivity in Atlassian’s swag offerings, Hanna jumped on the opportunity.
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International womens day leaders in fashion

Creating Women Leaders in Fashion

March 07, 2018

Women dominate most aspects of the fashion industry, from design school student bodies to entry-level jobs, making 70% of the entire fashion workforce. We’re even the primary customers, with women’s fashion growing to $621 billion in annual revenue, a staggering 54% more than menswear.
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From the Floor Series: End Product

From the Floor Series: End Product

January 25, 2018

This chapter is all about our end product - the result of what our team gather together each day to achieve. the final stages of our product, and how they get to you from us.
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Ethical capsule wardrobe easy pieces

Capsule Wardrobes & Why You Should Have One

January 19, 2018

The term ‘capsule wardrobe’ gets thrown around a lot these days and it seems it’s true meaning is getting a little lost among fashion trends and is being stretched to actually incorporate more shopping, rather than less.
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Meet our Team Kampot Cambodia

From the Floor Series: Meet our Team

January 11, 2018

At Dorsu, we want to break that cycle, provide a alternative for both workers and consumers and celebrate the talented people in our team that make this a possibility.
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Kampot Cambodia Travel

Meaningful Travel with Traverse Journeys

January 02, 2018

Traverse Journeys run group trips all over the world, founded on the principles of ecotourism and the concept of purposeful travel. Through each trip Traverse Journeys offers, travellers will be exposed to local culture and surroundings in an educational, supportive and respectful way.
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Dorsu small production team

From the Floor Series: Production

December 26, 2017

From the Floor Series is a further insight into what we do at Dorsu, how and why. Have you ever wondered where your clothes were made? What is the production process? Who makes them? Well, we would like to show you, every step of the way, from idea generation to final product. 
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Meet our Mates: Walk Sew Good

Meet our Mates: Walk Sew Good

December 19, 2017

Walk Sew Good are a fabulous duo that got together in 2016 to walk across South East Asia, raising awareness and bringing light to ethical fashion and production throughout the region. 
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From the floor Fabric Remnant

From the Floor Series: Fabric

December 13, 2017

From the Floor Series is a further insight into what we do at Dorsu, how and why. Have you ever wondered where your clothes were made? What is the production process? Who makes them? Well, we would like to show you, every step of the way, from idea generation to final product. 
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Our Design Process
Design

We collaborate as an entire team, combining design and production priorities.

Our design and sourcing processes are inter-linked. Sometimes we design and then source fabrics we wish to produce in, and other times we discover fabric we love and can create accordingly, quickly.

Our Product

Meticulously designed for everyday wear, focusing on quality above all else. 

Inspiration

You inspire us - our #DorsuCrew! We love talking to you and learning about what you do, what you need, and how clothing fits into your life. Every day, we meet fellow travellers from around the globe, visiting us during their holidays in Kampot. They buy Dorsu for our quality; withstanding weeks or months of adventures. When they return home, they have their go-to essentials for work, weekends, and holidays.

We make our own rules and don't abide by trends, mass consumption or over-production. By investing our time and talent into thoughtful design, we create pieces that will be mainstays in your closet.

In-house Pattern Making

Our patterns are made in-house by our Co-Founder and Head of Production & Design, Kunthear. With years of experience and training, she opts for the traditional method of measuring and cutting paper to transform concepts into complete, graded patterns.

Dorsu Collections

Every 8 weeks, we release new collections consisting of 3-4 thoughtfully designed, intentional pieces to be worn with one another and across collections. We use limited edition fabrics, meaning each collection is small-batch, sitting perfectly alongside our year-round Core Collection. 

Our Production Process
Step 1: Cutting

The first step in the cutting process is washing the fabric, to test shrinkage and colour fastness. Our cutting team cut paper patterns from the originals, laying them on the material in a way that minimises wastage. Cutting up to 25 layers at a time, we bundle each piece according to size.

Step 2: Production room

The cut and bundled pieces are then moved into the production room and delegated along the production line. It’s fast and straightforward, ensuring we create consistent end-products.

Step 3: Initial quality control

The sewn products are washed and individually measured against their specifications, checking they’re true-to-size.

Step 4: Finishing & final quality control

The final step in production is ironing and the second check for shrinkage, warping, construction or fabric faults. The final garments are folded, packed and stored for sale. Some are moved directly into our studio store (located at the front of our production space), while others go to our flagship store in Kampot, or sent to Australia for international retail.

Safety

All production staff undergo extensive training and skills development to ensure safe, efficient and quality work by all team members. We train all new staff on our internal Human Resources policy, including occupational health & safety procedures, fire safety and evacuation, and child protection. We update and renew training annually, with ongoing instruction on equipment safety and maintenance, as well as the protocols to assess risk and responsibly address incidents in the workplace.


Fair and safe employment is the responsibility of all companies, and we prioritise the physical and emotional well-being of our employees above everything else.

Customer Service & Sales
In-Store Retail

We have two storefronts in Kampot, Cambodia - our Old Market Flagship Store and our Road 33 Production Studio Store. All team members take part in regular training on our new ranges, inclusive of design concept, fabric, fit and styling. 

Our Kampot based retail team manage the in-country delivery program, speaking directly with customers to facilitate the order and delivery process. 

Online Retail

We ship all online orders from our distribution space in Tasmania, Australia. Our online customer service team work against Australian EST, providing consistent and quality support to our international customers.

We welcome your feedback and are open to answering any questions you may have about sizing, construction, fabric, or our production practices. 

Wholesale & Custom Orders

We ship all bulk orders from our Road 33 Production Studio in Kampot, Cambodia. Most of the time, these are made-to-order. As a result of having a close-knit team, we can offer a seamless buying experience. Our sales staff speak to our Production Manager, face-to-face so that you can have the most accurate updates on the status of your order. 

Learn More About Factory Remnants

Our fabric is remnant cotton jersey sourced from independent suppliers in Phnom Penh.

Remnant fabric (also known as "deadstock" or "surplus") is unused and unwanted leftover rolls of cloth in its original condition.

As a result of Cambodia’s pervasive garment manufacturing industry and issues that occur along the fashion industry’s incredibly complex supply chain, vast amounts of fabric are deemed unusable by brands on a daily basis. This waste arises due to reasons such as incorrect or oversupply of cloth, last minute changes in production schedules and the ever-increasing need for brands to be immediately responsive and adaptive to fashion trends.

These fabric leftovers are sold on from brands and factories to a local fabric supply industry, who then sell on through the Cambodian supply chain. We scour the warehouses of our preferred suppliers and purchase rolls of fabric per kilogram. When sourcing for our collections, we buy up to 100 kilograms of a collection colour (like burgundy) and up to 300 kilograms of a core colour (like black and navy).

Due to the nature of sourcing factory remnants, we can't guarantee consistency in the fabric blends. Consequently, we burn-test every fabric we buy to ensure it has very little or no synthetic fibres.

We pre-wash a sample of every new fabric, testing for colour fastness and shrinkage.

We know that using factory remnants has limitations. We know we can’t trace the true origins of our material. But, we are doing what we can, within the context in which we work. Cambodia doesn't have cotton mills or weaving facilities so, we are limited by access. As a small brand, we experience financial barriers of meeting minimum order quantities of suppliers outside of Cambodia and then importing fabric into the country. We are acutely aware of our impact on the local economy, and we choose to place our money where it has the most significant impact.

Dorsu Employment & Safety Policies
Safety
Policies

All Dorsu team members are required to read, understand, sign and abide by our internal human resource policy that is inclusive of: