Reviewed: How ethical and sustainable is Hitch and Hop?
Hitch & Hop
Ethical Home Edit Rating: GOOD
Social empowerment: ✮✮✮✮✩
Animal rights: ✮✮✮✮✩
Ships to: UK
Hitch & Hop is a UK based homewares brand selling limited edition and one of a kind cushions crafted from upcycled leather sofas and tweed jackets.
HITCH & HOP’S APPROACH TO SUSTAINABILITY
Founded in 2015, Hitch & Hop’s overriding mission is to reduce waste. It’s something that founder Luke, is especially passionate about. As such, the company upcycles old leather sofas destined for landfill and pairs them with new or recycled Harris tweed to create unique, innovative cushions that add personality and flair to your home.
The cushions are all handmade in the studio in Surrey, keeping their environmental impact low. There’s no mass production here, with one person, Jackie, identifed as ‘Chief Stitcher’.
I love Hitch & Hop’s ethos which focuses heavily on the creation of ‘beautiful products with special stories to be cherished for the long term’. They strive to produce cushions that you’ll buy once and keep forever. The company is also working on a ‘design your own’ option on the website where you can select the colours or designs you want, or even send in your own tweed jacket for them to upcycle for you.
I’ve rated Hitch & Hop as GOOD on sustainability due to their strong focus on waste minimisation. I’d love to see more information on their approach to packaging materials and any steps they’re taking to reduce the carbon footprint of their studio on the website - that could boost their sustainability rating up to GREAT!
HITCH & HOP’S APPROACH TO SOCIAL EMPOWERMENT
Hitch & Hop is a small business and while their employment conditions aren’t clear, their products are made in the UK which significantly limits the likelihood of exploitation. Further, it is clear from the website that the company places a strong emphasis on friends and family - ‘we value our loved ones as much as our products’ - and names each of it’s products after someone special to the brand.
Founder Luke has also stated his keenness to offer work, when he can, to people who struggle to secure employment in the traditional jobs market. This illustrates a social conscience alongside the company’s environmental mission. As such, I’ve rated Hitch & Hop as GOOD on social empowerment.
HITCH & HOP’S APPROACH TO ANIMAL RIGHTS
As Hitch & Hop use leather from recycled sofas, there is no concern about the sourcing of leather. Their cushions are feather-filled however, and it is not clear from the website where the feather inners are sourced from or whether they are certified by the Responsible Down Standard. Would be great to learn more about this.
The Harris tweed used for the cushions is 100 percent wool, sheared from sheep in the Outer Hebrides. The making of Harris Tweed and the wool used is subject to pretty strict criteria, due to its trademarking (only tweed made in the Outer Herbides using the specific processes outlined can be labelled as Harris Tweed).
I’m not aware of any claims of adverse impacts on the sheep sheared for their wool - indeed I understand that the whole process of creating Harris Tweed is undertaken slowly and conscientiously. As such, I’m happy to give Hitch & Hop a GOOD rating for its approach to animal rights.
Hitch & Hop’s cushions offer a quirky pop of individual style while helping to resolve the planet’s textile waste problem. The ability to personalise the designs in future is going to enhance these cushions as an excellent gift option for the discerning home owner who has a bold and playful sense of interior style. A small business with a huge heart - shop Hitch & Hop here.