‘Sustainable fashion’ aren’t just the buzzwords but a necessity today for a better future. With the fashion revolution week going on (24-30April), it is time to give some thought about how our fashion choices affect the lives of so many people and start making a change. After the Rana Plaza collapse in Bangladesh, four years ago today, the dark side of the fashion industry finally came to the limelight. 1,129 people died, over 2,500 injured in one of the deadliest garment-factory accident in history.
While the appetite for fast fashion hasn’t abated and the inhumane working conditions of labourers in the garment industry is still not uncommon, there has been a growing awareness about the need the for making fashion ethical. Exploitation of people, animals or the planet in the name of fashion needs to stop. Thankfully a new breed of small independent brands are cropping up that are embracing sustainability and offering responsible fashion. This has made it very convenient to find clothing that not only looks good and fit well, but are made without compromising on the ethics. Not only the new genre of small brands, but even large established fashion brands are beginning to make efforts to adopt ethical practices. Brands like Zara, H&M and Mango have launched their very own sustainable collections.
As consumers, we have the power to bring the change and demand for it. Consumerism is a powerful act. With every dollar we spend we cast a vote for the type of world we want. When we spend our money on a stylish outfit that comes from exploitation of people and planet, we endorse fashion terrorism. So let’s make a positive change. Instead of buying lots of poorly made clothes try to invest in an item that has been responsibly crafted and is built to last. “Buy less, choose well.” That’s the best way to forego consumerism and make responsible fashion decision.
Fortunately, today it is absolutely possible to be committed to the social and environmental aspect and engage in conscious consumption, when it comes to fashion, without compromising on style, cut or quality. Brands like Stella McCartney are a proof that you don’t have to compromise on style or luxury factor to be sustainable and are reshaping the foundation of the fashion world.
Many online stores are offering beautiful products from ethically conscious brands. From focus on emphasizing on timeless designs to eliminate overconsumption, utilizing small-scale and local production to supporting small artisans in the developing world, here is a list of sustainable fashion brands that manage to both look good and be good.
A truly ethical brand cares about all aspects – from the treatment of people to it’s impact on the planet and contributing to the society. The New Zealand based brand Kowtow is just that – a truly ethical brand. The company uses only certified organic cotton, provides fair wages to its workers, works with fair trade producers.
Ethics is the guiding principle, not just a marketing gimmick, that is why the Company even make sure it works with factories that support social causes, in addition to being fair trade. Their producer is based in India and sponsors projects such as Girls Education, Cow Shed and Cow Donation programs in the farmers’ villages.
Looking gorgeous while contributing for a cause is the mission Kowtow well-accomplished!
Known for her feminine and romantic dresses and grown-up elegance, this American designer supports the domestic artisans, sewers, pattern-makers, manufacturers, and small business owners by producing most of her clothing locally. Rose is also committed to supporting and giving back to the community. The fact that her designs are worn by the likes of Zoe Saldana, Jessica Alba and Anne Hathaway is a fact that sustainability and fashion can stylishly coexist.
Brainchild of Zac Posen’s former designer Novis has made quite a name in the fashion industry with a very short time of it’s existence and has been worn by the likes of Taylor Swift. We’re not surprised considering her feminine pieces with a unique spin of prints inspired by art and tailored silhouettes make the perfect style statement.
The entire design and production of Novis is done in New York under the guidance of Jordana Warmflash to promote local apparel manufacturing.
P.S. Not all pieces from these brands are vegan as they use silk and wool, but you can find vegan options from their collection by checking out the fabric details.
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