As my business is growing, I’m often asked to outline what i do in a sort of mission statement or, heaven forbid, an ethos. Reducing my ideas into a bite sized chunk not only focusses my mind on what i want to do – which is usually maaaany things at once – but also what i mean when i say I’m a sustainable fashion brand.

Anyone who has tried to do anything left of centre, creatively or otherwise, will know that you often face a baffling amount of opposition and perplexed faces when deviating from the norm. From years of working with bands trying to explain their ‘sound’ to me at 2am when we’re all a little ‘tired’, i know that one woman’s funk is another’s hip-hop, so terminology is important. Calling yourself eco-friendly can give people the wrong impression, and i don’t want to fall into a traditional woolly, felty, hempy category – love to those who do, but it’s not my vision.

So i’ve been looking at what peole are saying out there and what means what.

Right now I’m calling myself an upcycling brand, but this may grow and develop as i go on, and sustainability has so many facets: fair trade, eco fabric, green production and packaging. I’m hoping to be groovy in every way i can, and it’s proving hard…and expensive. Why isn’t everything green?

I recently watched an IPCC lecture by Prof Stuart Hazeldine of Edinburgh University – i know, cool right? – where he answered the question as to why we are not using renewable energy sources when they are available as partly because “It’s still socially acceptable to put that much CO2 into the atmosphere”. I loved that, and it seems true to me. We are still paying over the odds for sustainable fashion when we could be reusing and recyling most things just because we still think it’s ok to do so. We could buy less and wear things more, and we could really use those charity shops and clothing exchanges, but we can also source from environmentally sound companies.

I’d love to see us all shop with the benefit of our planet and people in mind.

Here’s a few fashion folkwho bill themselves as eco-friendly, special love to From Somewhere who I find very inspirational:

http://fromsomewhere.co.uk/

From Stylewith:

http://www.stylewithheart.com/category/eco-friendly/

And, of course, Vogue dahling…

http://www.vogue.co.uk/fashion/trends/2010-spring-summer/ethical-fair-trade-eco-friendly-fashion/gallery/1

 

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