30 Eco-Fashion Predictions for 2013

by , 01/02/13   filed under: Features

eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style


Even with mobile devices and personal gadgets now coaxing us to journey to and document the far corners of the globe, a genuine desire for rootedness and connection to place continues to influence our fashion and style choices. Regionally chic offerings from local designers will inspire us to examine what makes shopping close to home both rewarding and ultimately sustainable.

Slow fashion, slow food, regional natural dye recipes, the conceptual crossover between food and fashion production methods, and the beauty of the “gathering” itself will help us to better understand the nature of community and modern harvesting.

A new cultural diversity in styling and accessorizing will come from further injections of artisan-based craft and collaborative enterprises – not as a form of escapism but rather as an appreciation for what connects us and makes us human. This will translate into a cool mix of global wardrobe recipes and vibrant pin board combinations come-to-life.

I have my fingers crossed that mainstream designers will have increased access to fair and economically viable models for sourcing and production via initiatives like The Supply Change and Source4Style. Further interest in the complex value of textiles and the resilient threads of conscious choices will provide an underpinning for what constitutes true luxury and layers of deeper meaning.

eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style


Over the past year, I’ve watched curiosity grow in shoppers. Their curiosity results in questions: people genuinely want to know where and how their clothes were made and they want a connection to those people and places.

I predict 2013 to be the year of connection. Through the use of innovative media and technology, designers will continue to share their personal inspirations, the faces of the people who stitched together their collection, and give true meaning to the country-of-origin tag by depicting images of physical locations.

eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style


In 2013, we will see a continued movement in both the established fashion industy and independent design world towards cooperation and collaboration. We will share resources, unite like-minded organizations, and communicate enlightened ideas of change without fear. NYC will transform into a globally recognized manufacturing hub for socially conscious industrial startups, especially in areas of Brooklyn with convenient transit and affordable industrial space.

Anthony Lilore of Restore Clothing and Save The Gament Center recently said to me: “We all must work together in some way. Must. That is part of the responsibility and sustainability code we have come to live by.” This is the battle cry of the new year.

Cooperative sourcing
Progressive websites (Maker’s Row, Made in NYC and AboutSources) will make U.S. fashion sourcing accessible to a new generation and become everyday tools to create a virtual map of manufacturers, fabric/trim suppliers, printers and more. Local design collectives like Brooklyn Fashion League, Gowanus Print Lab, and Manufacture New York will share equipment and materials, and crowdsource orders to achieve affordable pricing for everyone. This will begin leveling the playing field so that independent designers have a real possibility of establishing healthy businesses from the start.

Sustainable manufacturing
Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center has existed for a decade as an exceptional resource for affordable industrial space in Brooklyn, and in 2013 it will be joined by new production resources like the Pratt Designer Incubator’s Small Run Production Center and Manufacture New York’s hybrid Fashion Incubator & Vertical Factory. We will engage participating designers, industry leaders, city officials, and the public in an inclusive development process to ensure sustainable business practices that will lead to an increase in fair wages and quality manufacturing jobs for local workers.

Practical eco- and consumer awareness
Designers will take on a greater role in educating their buyers on the importance of eco-friendly, domestically produced, and sustainable fashion through public awareness campaigns and increased transparency throughout the full product lifecycle. As we continue to be more practical with our money, respect for quality workmanship & materials will grow, and curated “made in the U.S.A.” online stores like Made Collection and Love U.S. will gain in popularity.

Upcycling, reclaimed, and recycled fabrics and trims will become more accepted and desirable, and buyers will recognize the increased savings in buying local; avoiding the waste (both environmentally and fiscally) of international shipping.

eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style


Photo by Michael Beauplet for The Wild

2013 will be a really big year for ethical fashion. The anti-fur movement has had a huge surge, and also an evolution into something more sophisticated and fashion-savvy. Many fashion insiders have taken up the cause and I think 2013 will feature even more international policy banning the cruel trade, as so many European countries did this year.

More and more mainstream media are covering workers’ rights issues like the many tragic factory fires in sweatshops for fast-fashion labels. Many of the problems inherent in the mainstream fashion industrial complex are also being revealed.

In addition, many mills and factories are stepping up to the plate and creating innovative recycled, organic, closed-loop, and eco- or labor-certified textiles, and the demand for these products among designers, stylists, celebs and citizens is growing. I am counting on lucky 13 and am excited to see my own menswear brand grow, as well!

eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style


The biggest trend for the future will be honing our wardrobes. Buying better and buying less. Committing to well-made things made in conditions you can stand behind. Buying made in America. Knowing your dollars make a difference and spending them to make a difference.


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One Response to “30 Eco-Fashion Predictions for 2013”

  1. Brulee says:

    I think that one of the main ethical questions should be over the lack of choice in skincare/make up brands unless one chooses to shoponline at places like Naturisimo or LoveLula where only non animal tested products are sold? In Department stores and Boots many brands especially the ‘high end’ designer ones still use the cruel and unreliable draize and force feeding methods rather than the more reliable alternatives, even ingredients linked to skin irritation and cancer are still used. This is less likely in BUAV approved non animal tested products as natural alternatives, higher quality are often preferred?

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