Livia Firth: Fast Fashion is an "Evil Machine" of Exploitation

by , 04/21/15   filed under: Eco-Celebrities, Quotes

Livia Firth, quotes, The True Cost, Andrew Morgan, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, fast fashion, eco-celebs, eco-friendly celebrities, green celebrities, sustainable celebrities

Photo by Featureflash/Shutterstock

“Over the past two decades fashion has changed thanks to this new phenomenon called ‘fast fashion’ and now we have a situation where, as consumers, we are caught in an absurd circle of micro-trends. Think about it. Around two mini-seasons a week in stores. Disposable clothes that stay in a woman’s closet for an average of just five weeks, before being thrown out—all in the name of the democratization of fashion.

“In reality, this evil machine is exploiting everyone and everything: the consumer, the planet’s resources and the people who produce them. Each year across the world, 1.5 billion garments are sewn by an estimated 40 million people, working in 250,000 factories. These are predominantly made in countries described by the [United Nations] as the world’s least developed.

“All in all, the garment and textile industry is estimated to be worth some $3 trillion. And the bulk of that goes into the pockets of the owners of those fast fashion brands. It’s a complicated mess we are in.”

Livia Firth, creative director of Eco-Age and co-founder of the Green Carpet Challenge, speaking to The True Cost director Andrew Morgan about why we need a new system of consumption.

 

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Fashion Revolution Day Asks "Who Made Your Clothes?"

by , 04/20/15   filed under: Eco-Fashion News

Fashion Revolution Day, Fashion Revolution, workers rights, human rights, Rana Plaza, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style

As participants in more than 65 countries gather on Friday to commemorate the second anniversary of the collapse of the Rana Plaza garment factory in Bangladesh, one question will loom above all others: Who made your clothes? Mark Fashion Revolution Day—and honor the 1,138 lives lost—by lending your support to an event near you. Below, a selection of highlights.

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Neiman Marcus Persists in Selling Real Fur as "Faux"

by , 04/20/15   filed under: Animal Cruelty, Eco-Fashion News

Neiman Marcus, fur, faux fur, animal fur, Humane Society of the United States, Federal Trade Commission, Humane Society, animal cruelty, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style

The Humane Society of the United States has accused Neiman Marcus of violating an agreement not to sell “faux fur” products containing actual animal fur. In a complaint filed with the Federal Trade Commission on Tuesday, the animal-rights group took the department store to task for defying the Fur Products Labeling Act with its “business-as-usual approach.” Central to the petition are three pairs of boots (one from Taryn Rose and two from Aquatalia), all of which have since been removed from the store’s website. Neiman Marcus faced similar charges in 2013, when it settled with the FTC over “falsely or deceptively advertising any fur product by misrepresenting or failing to disclose that the fur in any fur product is faux or fake.”

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South Africa's The Joinery is Turning Fashion Into a Social Movement

by , 04/17/15   filed under: Eco-Fashion Brands, Fair Trade, Women's Eco-Fashion

The Joinery, South Africa, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, hemp, organic cotton, fair trade, fair-trade fashion, fair-trade clothing, locavore fashion, Cape Town, Natalie Ellis, Kim Ellis

“Do Something. Anything.” South African fashion brand The Joinery stands strong behind the belief that if everyone does something, no matter how small, all of us can make a difference and collectively “strive towards the goal of a sustainable fashion revolution.”

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"Photochromia" Garments Reveal Hidden Patterns in Sunlight

by , 04/17/15   filed under: Eco-Fashion Brands, Wearable Technology

Photochromia, wearable technology, UV light, Kickstarter, color-changing textiles, color-changing fabrics, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, thermochromic fabrics, thermochromic ink, thermochromic textiles, photochromic ink, photochromic textiles, photochromic fabrics, responsive clothing, responsive textiles, Print All Over Me, The Crated

Wear a Photochromia shirt inside and it will look one way. Take it outside into the sun and it will magically transform before your eyes to reveal hidden geometries. Photochromia is a collection of garments designed and made through a new collaboration between wearable tech studio, The Crated and Print All Over Me, a platform to make full bleed digitally printed garments. Printed with photochromic inks, which are reactive in UV light, these hats, shirts, pants and even backpacks respond to their environment when moved from inside to outside into the sun.

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Artist Merry Coor Turns Loved Ones' Ashes Into Memorial Pendants

by , 04/16/15   filed under: Eco-Friendly Jewelry

Ash Beads, dead people, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, eco-friendly jewelry, sustainable jewelry, eco-friendly pendants, sustainable pendants, bizarre eco-fashion, Merry Coor

Ashes to ashes, dust to dust? Not if you’re California glassmaker Merry Coor. The Eureka resident specializes in making “ash beads”: tangible mementos of the deceased that incorporate cremated remains into their swirling designs. Coor crafts every orb herself using a torch and rods of Italian- and American-made glass. Her process is equally unique. In addition to the ashes, Coor asks her clients to forward a photo, letter, or story that allows her to hone a mental picture of the loved one. “I take making beads with ashes very seriously and begin each bead with the utmost respect,” she writes on her website. “When I go into my studio to make a bead, I am centered and my thoughts are clear. I only want good energy, love, and good thoughts incorporated into every bead I make.”

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NRDC's Linda Greer is Cleaning Up China's Toxic Fashion Industry

by , 04/16/15   filed under: Features, Interviews, Toxic Pollution

Linda Greer, NRDC, Natural Resources Defense Council, Clean by Design, China, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, toxic pollution, toxic chemicals

Linda Greer ranks among the fashion industry’s leading “toxic avengers.” As director of the Natural Resources Defense Council’s five-year-old “Clean by Design” initiative, Greer is on the frontline of a sector burdened by high energy and water use and endemic, often catastrophic, pollution. Her Sisyphean task? To leverage the purchasing power of multinational brands and retailers to chip away at the environmental impacts of their manufacturing abroad, beginning with the biggest offender: China. As NRDC prepares to, in its own words, “aggressively expand” the program’s reach, Ecouterre caught up with Greer to learn about her “win-win” strategy, what the early days of Clean by Design were like, and how we can differentiate the “true-gooders” from the “greenwashers” in a post–corporate-social-responsibility world.

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NRDC's "Clean by Design" Helps China's Garment Industry Turn a Corner

by , 04/15/15   filed under: Eco-Fashion News, Toxic Pollution

NRDC, Natural Resources Defense Council, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, China, Clean by Design, Linda Greer, toxic pollution

Photo by Shutterstock

There’s a trick to knowing what colors will infuse next season’s trends, according to Linda Greer, senior scientist at Natural Resources Defense Council. Simply look at China’s rivers. The waterways of the world’s largest clothing exporter frequently churn with the untreated effluent of countless textile mills and dye houses. Some days they appear red; others, blue, yellow, or green. In fact, nearly one third of Chinese rivers are considered too polluted for direct human contact, notes Greer, who directs the nonprofit’s “Clean by Design” program. Launched in 2009, the initiative has labored to loosen the garment industry’s environmental stranglehold. And it looks like its efforts are starting to pay off.

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United Nude "Reinvents" Shoes With Architectural 3D-Printed Footwear

by , 04/15/15   filed under: Eco-Friendly Shoes, Submitted Story, Wearable Technology, Women's Eco-Fashion

United Nude, 3D Systems, Zaha Hadid, Ben van Berkel, Ross Lovegrove, Ross Lovegrove, Michael Young, Milan Design Week, wearable technology, 3D printers, 3D printing, 3D-printed shoes, 3D-printed fashion, eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, Salone del Mobile

United Nude is already known for their innovative shoes, but they are pushing new limits with 3D printing technology for Milan Design Week. The designers have teamed up with 3D systems to challenge the traditional shoe, using 3D technology to view shoes as sculpture. The incredible partnership will produce five pairs of shoes that will be available to the public, designed by world renowned architects and designers including Zaha Hadid, Ross Lovegrove, Fernando Romero, Michael Young and Ben van Berkel.

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Cotopaxi's Outdoor Gear Inspires Adventure, Funds Poverty Relief

Cotopaxi's Outdoor Gear Inspires Adventure, Funds Poverty Relief

Outdoor gear company Cotopaxi is gaining major attention from consumers and investors for their superior product and unique approach to marrying business with social impact. Founder…

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"Soundweaving" Turns Traditional Folk Embroidery Into Playable Music

"Soundweaving" Turns Traditional Folk Embroidery Into Playable Music

Soundweaving comes from design student Zsanett Szirmay, of the Moholy-nagy University of Art and Design Budapest, who created this mysterious sound artwork by transforming embroidery…

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Pharrell Williams, Woolworths Team Up to "Make Sustainability Cool"

Pharrell Williams, Woolworths Team Up to "Make Sustainability Cool"

Woolworths could tell you a thing or two about hiring coups. The South African department store has just appointed Grammy-winning artist Pharrell Williams, who will spearhead…

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Pyrrha Expands Line of Recycled-Metal "Game of Thrones" Jewelry

Pyrrha Expands Line of Recycled-Metal "Game of Thrones" Jewelry

VALAR MORGHULIS But while the show—and the books on which it’s based—are fiction, the techniques Pyrrha employs are not. The company uses the traditional art of lost-wax…

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Australians Love Beer So Much, They Made a Dress With It

Australians Love Beer So Much, They Made a Dress With It

The “Beer Dress” is more than a homage to Australia’s favorite pint. Created by Nanollose, the same Perth-based firm that transformed red wine into clothing, the frock…

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Faircloth & Supply's Timeless Clothing Benefits Education in Nepal

Faircloth & Supply's Timeless Clothing Benefits Education in Nepal

Why did Faircloth choose Nepal as the focus of its mission? It started with the cause: girls’ education. I have always been very passionate about women’s rights and the…

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M4D3, PETA's Vegan-Leather Espadrilles Benefit Animal Causes

M4D3, PETA's Vegan-Leather Espadrilles Benefit Animal Causes

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals’ latest collaboration is a bit of a shoo-in (or should we say shoe-in?) The animal-rights group announced Tuesday that it’s…

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Proud Mary Global Textiles Focuses on Empowerment, Not Pity

Proud Mary Global Textiles Focuses on Empowerment, Not Pity

Socially conscious lifestyle brand Proud Mary focuses on the mantra “Pride not Pity.” After volunteering in South America for Habitat for Humanity, owner Harper Poe was moved to…

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Takaokami's Ethical Rainwear Tackle Showers in Style

Takaokami's Ethical Rainwear Tackle Showers in Style

RAIN, RAIN GO AWAY Jorn’s Scandinavian ethos is apparent in her designs, which are understated but made to last. (Standouts include a generously-sized hat and a kicky A-line…

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