Round tables: Fashion as a tool for development/Sustainability and Fashion
‘Wonderland’ is an amazing example of a fashion designer and a scientist working together in search of sustainable fashion design solutions. The interdisciplinary nature of this project draws attention to the fact that a designer is not limited to work only in the confines of traditional fashion. Textile science can help designers think outside the strictly aesthetic context of their design, taking it to another level. The Helen Storey Foundation is dedicated to the promotion of creativity and innovation through collaboration. ‘Wonderland’ is a design project that explores the design potential of biodegradable materials. I suggest watching the Reuters video first for some background context. Then move on to watch the project finale video.
Source: Center for Sustainable Fashion and The Helen Story Foundation
I just wondered onto this site from David Muro II ‘s blog, and wanted to post the link here. It is a video of Emily Pilloton speaking on ‘social minded product design’ at the Metropolis Conference. Pilloton was one of the quest speakers presenting this past Saturday at Compostmodern09 on her work as founder of Project H. Check out the video; these are product design concepts that need to be discussed in fashion design courses. They are interdisciplinary and the cross-over to fashion students is a necessary step toward sustainable fashion design.
The video link is embedded in the photo.
The first FIBERcast, featuring Dr. Marsha Dickson and Mr. Doug Cahn, took place today, February 23, 2008. The broadcast was hosted by Dr. Hye-Shin Kim, of the University of Delaware, and focused on “Social Responsibility in the Apparel Industry”.
For those not following on Twitter, here are my live tweets of the event: searchable under #fibercast, #csr and #sr
· Dr. Marsha Dickson # fibercast: monitoring become the standard, but often does not provide solutions. new book http://tinyurl.com/aqb85w
· #fibercast problems are complex and widespread/freedom of association/forced labour/discrimination/child labour
· Environmental responsibility does not just have to do with fiber choice. remember the whole life cycle analysis/ #fibercast
· CSR to Mr. Doug Cahn# fibercast is about looking at the impact, to mitigate the negative, and augment the possitive
· Doug Cahn #fibercast http://thecahngroup.com/
· #csr is not an add-on, its a core issue, supplychain for an apparel company..pay your workers the legal limit, at least make up short fall
· disctinction between compliant and non-compliant/the industry is aflling short. yes there is cost, but also have a business case (save$)#csr
· #csr #fibercast Dr. Marsha Dickson Answers Q. on WRAP factory certification is important but not the answer http://tinyurl.com/bjckwu
· limitations of factory monitoring asks “what?” not “why?” and quality of auditing can be lacking…provides only ‘snapshop’ #csr #fibercast
· # fibercast #csr #recession: Cahn finds opportunity in downturn for better integration/restructuring interdepartmental thinking opportunity
· #csr #fibercast Dickson: consumer difference perceptions from behaviour. no real ‘no sweat’ label, cannot ensure compliance
· #csr #fibercast Dickson believes to look for honest companies working toward real change #nike #adidas (ex)
· # fibercast #csr Cahn: government can play a voluntary role, also use trade agreement..ensure internationally approved standards on imports
· # fibercast #csr Cahn check out fairlabor.org for opperations and http://www.sa-intl.org/
· # fibercast #csr Cahn, small/med. company: ask questions again and again, collaboration fairfactories.org
· #csr #fibercast Dickson stresses importance of multi-stakeholder initiatives and also ngo’s light the fire under companies
· #csr #fibercast Dickson to students: we need to educate students on #sr in graduate program, but also integrated into undergrad class
· #csr #fibercast #sr Dickson http://tinyurl.com/b3ep9u
New edition of fibre, this edition is focused on China.
Treehugger rounds up the eco fashion scene at New York Fashion Week, here.
Greenloop offers a promotional sale up to 75% off (they really just mean an additional 25%).
Now it’s time to move on to much greener pastures: London Fashion Week.
The British Fashion Council (BFC) launches 6th season of estethica today, Feb 20th. Care to read the press release? The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs is set to launch a Sustainable Clothing Action Plan off of London Fashion Week. This post from the guardian provided that spoiler alert. Furthermore, it turns out that actor Colin Firth owns an eco shop in London, Eco Age (it’s linked, but the site doesn’t seem to be working). It is launching 12 Degrees pop-up shop, collaboration between Lucy Siegle (the guardian), fashion designer Orsola de Castro (estethica) and Jocelyn Whipple. Exciting stuff.
Getting Back to Mr. Darcy…
I wrote earlier on the upcoming Fashioning an Ethical Industry Conference: Putting ethics into practice. It is an event that I am really looking forward to, as this year’s theme is well aligned with my research question (thesis due March 31st, Yikes!). There are lots of events going on at this time through both FEI and the Ethical Fashion Forum (EFF). Please check out these other three events:
Fashion plus workshops and masterclasses
The Ethical Fashion Forum is running a seminar series called “Spotlight on Sourcing”, as part of their Fashion+ project, focused on how fashion can change lives. The series includes:
Ongoing from 20th January 2009
1. Evening seminars on the 3rd Tuesday of every month (excluding fashion weeks) featuring presentations by leading practitioners and experts, updates from suppliers, and structured networking.
2. Masterclasses for smaller groups, going into more depth on each of the issues raised by seminars. Run by experts and practitioners. Masterclasses allow you to focus and work through sourcing challenges faced by your business.
This event information was taken directly from the FEI Events page, here.
9th March 2009
Open FEI workshops and staff training in Scotland
Staff Training 10.30am – 1.00pm and Student Workshop 2.00 – 4.00pm at Edinburgh College of Art.
Staff Training: This session is a unique opportunity for tutors and support staff at higher or further education instiutions to explore poor working conditions in the garment industry and learn how to integrate ethical issues into course curricula and student’s projects. This session will include presentations from Bangladeshi speakers about their work improving conditions for garment workers in Bangladesh and Liz Parker, FEI project coordinator and a co-editor of ‘Sustainable Fashion: A Handbook for Educators’, discussing different approaches to teaching ethical issues for a wide range of disciplines from design to fashion business and marketing.
Student Workshop: This session will give students the opportunity to hear about working conditions in the garment industry and explore how the lives of workers could be positively transformed by changing the way the fashion industry currently operates.
This event information was taken directly from this FEI Events page, here.
Ethical and Eco Fashion Show
Come and see some of the best in ‘eco’ and ‘ethical’ design including Howies, Enamore, Myella, SI:SU and Gringo at the National Waterfront Museum, Swansea on the 3rd April 2009 from 6 to 9.30pm. Tickets cost £4.50 for adults and £3.00 for concessions and can be purchased from Swansea Environmental Centre, Pier Street, Swansea, SA1 1RY or call 01792480200. All proceeds from this event will go to Fashioning an Ethical Industry and Swansea Environmental Centre.
The current issue of Ethical Style has dedicated itself to brides to be: “Big day, big decisions — how to turn your white wedding green”
It offers simple suggestions toward some ethical options on your big day.
The greatest thing about the guide however is the wide range of resources it provides; including the 3D’s: diamonds, dresses and destinations.
A perfect illustration that an ethical choice doesn’t have to be
b) expensive (actually, in some circles the jury may still be out…)
You brides probably have enough on your mind, but you may be surprised at what you find inside this issue….so follow the link.
Source: Ethical Style
Photo: Vera Wang at Pre Owned Wedding Dresses
Fashioning an Ethical Industry: Putting Ethics into Practice March 11th, 2009
This is a one day conference that will bring together experts in ethical fashion, as well as students and tutors, to discuss the current state of the ethical fashion industry, and ways to put ethics into practice. There is no question this will be an excellent conference.
You can read more about this year’s conference and speakers here.
Another interesting article taken from The Independent today, discussed some frustrations in dealing with products that not only fall apart, but are designed to fall apart.
Thought it might be time for another poll.
If you’re interested in sustainable design, check out the Compostmodern 09 conference. The event will be available as a webcast, so you only have to worry about the long commute to your office, living room, kitchen table, or bed to get there.
Feb 21st is the big day/40$ webcast registration
This years scheduled speakers:
Eames Demetrios/Eames Office
Saul Griffith/Makani Power
Allan Chochinov/Core 77
Nathan Shedroff/MBA Chair, California College of the Arts (CCA)
Michel Gelobter, John Bielenberg and Pam Dorr/Project M and HERO Housing Resource, Alabama
Emily Pilloton/Project H Design
Dawn Danby/Sustainable Design Program Manager, Autodesk
Emcee: Joel Makower/GreenBiz
What does this have to do with sustainable fashion?
Compostmodern is a design conference dedicated to creating a platform for discussion on sustainable design practices. The interdisciplinary nature of the conference has created a network of information sharing that is relevant to discussions in sustainable fashion/textile design practices, as design is interdisciplinary. Last year, Mark Galabraith, discussed the nature of the sustainable filters used to create outdoor clothing company Nau Clothing, Inc. In his presentation, Galabraith discusses the clothing company as wanting to participate in the industry not as a brand, but rather as a cultural movement.
Some of the design questions he mentions as particularly central to the development of Nau Clothing, Inc. are issues surrounding durability, ease of repair, multi-use, raw material (biodegradability and treatment of animals) and impacts within manufacturing processes. He also speaks of the challenges associated with harmonizing urban sensibility with outdoor performance in a way that questions the ‘aesthetic point for sustainability’.
What I found particularly interesting is the company’s warehouse approach (coupled with a showroom boutique) used to hold merchandise. Although customers are able to take their product home immediately, a 10% is available to customers who are willing to have their garment sent to them. The company also boasts a recycle program (end of life strategy) where old products can be reused to be transformed into new ones (polyester used as a post-consumer material)
The key to Nau Clothing, Inc. is flexible design.
Check out Galabraith, and other speakers from last year’s conference here.
Check out more from Nau Clothing, Inc., like this men’s riding jacket, here.