As EcoSalon has reminded readers time and time again since our beginnings five years ago, the days when sustainable fashion was considered a fringe endeavor are long since over.
The UK-based industry body Ethical Fashion Forum (EFF) is perfect example of sustainable fashion, representing 6,000 members in more than 100 countries who are committed to creating beautiful and sustainable designs as a rule, not an exception.
Last week EFF hosted the third installment of the SOURCE Brand Preview, an online social enterprise which aims to be the “world’s leading source of sustainable fashion business intelligence.” By bringing together designers, buyers, press, and stylists in the form of an online (and carbon-free) webinar, SOURCE aims to educate fashion’s key players in order to transform the livelihoods of those working in the textile industry and reduce the environmental impact of the industry altogether.
EcoSalon previewed the collections presented in last week’s online forum and chose four standout designs from the most impressive category: womenswear young brands. We love these collections for their fresh aesthetics and the fact that each has a sustainable ethos underpinning their work.
The geometric designs of the Berlin-based brand Treches exude the hip vibe of what is currently considered Europe’s coolest city. A big fan of cut-outs, contrasting colors, and clean lines, the brand’s Norwegian born creator says she designs for an urban consumer. The brand uses organic and ethically sourced fabrics exclusively and, in an effort to cut down on waste as their production expands, they save their scraps and discarded fabric to donate to smaller projects.
Atelier Laure Paschoud
Swiss-born designer Laure Paschoud sees fashion not as clothing, but as “a useful and universal art.” Her designs are demarcated by beautiful draping and solid fabrics which help create an overall look that’s feminine with a touch of boyishness. She uses fabrics that are certified organic, fair trade, or recycled and manufactures her pieces in a Bosnian production workshop—run by a Swiss-Bosnian family—as part of an effort to rehabilitate the Eastern European nation and ensure the sustainability of local knowledge.
Greek designer Athena Bentila’s MuMu Organic label is inspired by the landscape of the Cyclades islands where she initially created it. The ethereal and colorful pieces are made with certified organic cotton from Fair Trade producers in India and her other fabrics are imported from a Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certified factory in Turkey. The water-based prints are based on the environmentally-inspired paintings of Dutch artist Roland Wakker. Perhaps most pertinent though, is that all of MuMu Organic’s clothes are produced locally, providing much needed employment to the struggling Greek economy.
As the name might suggest, the clothing, accessories and housewares of Kampala Fair are produced in a workshop in Uganda’s capital city. The modest and flattering cuts of their dresses coupled with vibrant colors and African prints are an effortless standout. Taking the stance that jobs are more important than charity, the aim of the brand is to create sustainable livelihoods for women and provide them with skills to provide for their future.
All images courtesy of designer.