Ethically responsible vegan label Brown Boy has a spectacular gender-neutral line-up

Brown Boy is ethically responsible, fair-trade and vegan label relying on fashion to bring about positive change
Screen-Printing done by artisans at Brown Boy
Screen-Printing done by artisans at Brown Boy

With social entrepreneurship on the rise, more and more fashion labels are working towards a zero-waste goal. Vegan, fair-trade label Brown Boy has a spectacular gender-neutral lineup, incredibly streamlined to our street-style aesthetic, and made exclusively with organic cotton. Prateek Kayan, the founder of the Kolkata and New-York based brand, tells us that the brand leans on upcycling and recycling to curb over-production and wastage. “Everything is ethically made, vegan and environmentally sound. We only use organic cotton and eco-friendly ink. We do not overproduce and we do not use plastic. The model that we are working on leans towards complete sustainability. A large part of our new collection is made with upcycled fabrics, and another aspect of the line involves re-usage of products to use them in the embroidery,” Prateek tells us. 

<em>Bird-printed organic cotton tee by Brown Boy</em>
Bird-printed organic cotton tee by Brown Boy

Brown Boy’s numbers have also found a significant connect with millennials, owing to its spectacularly conceptualised designs and prints. Bollywood and Hollywood are quite taken with the label as well. Besides Tiger Shroff and Rajkummar Rao, Robert Downey Jr was spotted wearing a Woody Allen tee by the brand. Brown Boy’s creations have a focus on cultural relevance and narratives that drive the youth. Besides their textual T-shirts, which are all over Instagram, Brown Boy’s line features some stunning artwork too. Some of our favourites are the hand-embroidered Elvis T-shirts, made with recycled sequins, and the organic cotton ‘War is Over’ tee featuring John Lennon and Yoko Ono. 

<em>Cotton Woody Allen tee by Brown Boy</em>
Cotton Woody Allen tee by Brown Boy

“Our prints are created to push the boundaries and to be engaging; you’ll see that our texts are a little risque, as they talk about issues that most people look away from, like LGBTQ rights and modern-day slavery. Our designs have a certain political sensitivity,” we are informed. Prateek, who was partially brought up in Kolkata, but was working in New York, quit his job in finance to start his own line. He tells us that it was in NYC that he discovered his love for design and art. And, within a few months of navigating the fashion industry, Prateek realised how important a zero-waste focus is. 

<em>Prateek Kayan of Brown Boy</em>
Prateek Kayan of Brown Boy

“In the first couple of months, as we tried to understand how the industry works, we realised that we need to change the status quo. And, that we need to be sustainable, with a dependence on organic creation, to make a change for the better,” Prateek adds. We were incredibly happy to discover that Brown Boy is also a gender-neutral brand and that it caters to all identities across the gender spectrum. Prateek tells us that the numbers are made with body size in mind, but do not adhere to gender-typical clothing rules. Brown Boy also does not rely on an exploitative sweatshop production process; all their creations are made in-house, by a team of artisans, and the numbers are 100 per cent fair-trade. Brown Boy’s sweatshirts and yoga pants are already a hit with young buyers; check out their collection online. 

The line starts from Rs 1,300 and is available on their websites, and stores across India, the US, and parts of Europe.

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