Karma Avenue: Shopping with a Conscience

July 8, 2014

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We’re delighted to introduce you to our client partner Karma Avenue, the first website dedicated to curating and promoting high-end fashion and stylish brands that are at the cutting edge in fair trade and eco-friendly in their sourcing and production.

Karma Avenue is the brainchild of Nancy Notaro who wanted to create an online resource for the sustainability-minded shopper to access, share and purchase the latest luxury animal- and eco-friendly clothing, accessories and home decor.

We were fortunate enough to sit down with Nancy and chat about her vision for Karma Avenue and how this all came about…

Nancy NotaroHow did this all start for you? What was your moment of inspiration?
I first thought of Karma Avenue when I was shopping on Fifth Avenue in New York. I was visiting all the major luxury brands on the hunt for a beautiful new handbag. When I found the purse I loved I had an epiphany — a “record scratch” moment — when it occurred to me that I was about to pay an extremely large amount of money on an item that I had no idea where it came from. As an animal lover I wondered where and how the leather was acquired. Also, who made this bag and were they paid a fair wage? What dyes were used and were the dyes disposed of in an eco-friendly way? So I asked the sales rep if there were any animal-friendly or environmentally responsible processes in the manufacturing of the bag I was about to purchase. She couldn’t answer the question. In fact, the only thing she could tell me was that it was handcrafted in Italy. My heart sank and I didn’t buy the handbag.

But it didn’t end there did it?
That was really just the beginning. I started asking other luxury designer sales reps the same questions, but to no avail. I was delighted when I discovered Stella McCartney — and her commitment to sustainability through her collections — and felt great when I purchased one of her beautiful handbags. After more research I learned a few major designers also put out a select number of animal-friendly and environmentally conscious items, but they’re sporadic and aren’t available at every store. I saw a real need in the market for a site dedicated to curating these kinds of items from luxury designers and for people like me to share their latest purchases. Karma Avenue was created to fill that need.

What are you most hoping to achieve through Karma Avenue?
Karma Avenue will be the “go to” site for Fifth Avenue shoppers who want to see and share the latest designer animal- and eco-friendly fashion, accessories and home furnishings. Karma Avenue is about the conversation, promoting and sharing of “Good Karma Shopping.” We’re hoping to achieve Changeanomics —the concept of leveraging the fiscal power of everyday purchases to drive bottom-up systemic social change in the practices of luxury designer companies.

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Creative BSTRO worked with Nancy to create the Karma Avenue brand identity and logo, website, ecommerce solution and overall social strategy. We are honored to help her achieve her vision to become a leading destination for luxury brand shoppers to share their good shopping opportunities and experiences, and we are excited to watch this pioneer of Good Karma Shopping bring her vision to the masses.