Ethical fashion represents an ethos whereby a brands approach to the design, sourcing and manufacture of their product aims to benefit as many people and communities while minimising the impact it is having on the environment.
Ethical consumerism is on the rise and has been for quite some time now, but brands need to look further than just appealing to their end customer. Did you know for example, it takes 1,800 gallons of water to produce enough cotton to make just one pair of blue jeans! That is a scary figure, considering how many jeans there are in the world. Thankfully, there are many names in fashion with an ethical approach to everything they do, and it is starting to rub off on some of the big names now as well. Take a look at some of the ways ethical fashion is making a name for itself right now.
The British designer Stella McCartney is one of the names really driving forward sustainable fashion at the moment. In a recent interview with Vogue Magazine, McCartney discussed how sustainable fashion can be sexy, as well as some of the new technologies can really help ethical fashion. Interestingly, the fashion industry is actually the second most harmful industry to the environment behind oil and Stella McCartney has been fighting against this for quite some time now. For example, her latest collaboration with Adidas was made entirely from recycled polyester and her ‘fur’ products are actually totally animal friendly. Inspired by her Mother’s work, Stella McCartney is an animal rights supporter and she omits any leather or fur in her fashion. Instead, her collections are created with vinyl, plastic, raffia, fabric and recycled materials. McCartney’s eponymous brand was one of the first to embrace a sustainable attitude with such vigour in her fashion business. Often emphasising the importance of eco-fashion, McCartney states: ‘I am always asking myself what have done to make this garment more sustainable and what else can we do.’
For more detail on Stella McCartney’s Eco Friendliness, check out this post.
In more recent news, the CEO of Gucci Marco Bizzarri has announced that Gucci will be completely fur free by 2018. In an act that has been supported by many animal rights activists as well as the Humane Society of the United States being in negotiation with the Italian fashion house for years. Bizzarri announced the decision during London Fashion Week stating “Being socially responsible is one of Gucci’s core values, and we will continue to strive to do better for the environment and animals. “Do you think using furs today is still modern? I don’t think it’s still modern and that’s the reason why we decided not to do that. “It’s a little bit outdated. Creativity can jump in many different directions instead of using furs.”
Check out Gucci’s latest collection of Glasses now.
While the value of the fur industry is currently estimated at over £30 billion a year, designers like Gucci as well as Ralph Laurent, Calvin Klein, Giorgio Armani and more we should hopefully start to see this number reducing dramatically.
The whole concept of ethical fashion is still fairly new, but with names as big as Gucci and Stella McCartney both making statements in the fashion world we can hopefully expect more to follow suit in the coming years. Even away from high fashion, brands like H&M and Adidas are both already looking at their environmental footprint by using new, earth-friendly raw materials.