Paris Fashion Week. Those three little words conjure images of decadence and couture, the epitome of luxury and fantasy. But this October, as a testament to how far eco-fashion has come, Paris Fashion Week also hosted a slew of events dedicated to emerging and established designers who blend ethical production with thoughtfully designed clothing and accessories.
Now in its sixth year, the four-day Ethical Fashion Show hosted more than 100 accessory and clothing designers at Le Tapis Rouge. Industry vets, including Veja sneakers, Terra Plana, and Article 23 were there alongside newcomers such as Nu Jeans and Como No. Nu stood out as with its dark denim in classic straight and slim fits. Its production is Oeko-Tex-certified, and it uses nickel-free buttons, rivets and zippers. Como No’s organic cotton patterned bags and “wellies” are fresh, fun, and fair-made.
The more cutting-edge designers, however, were located in The Marais. At the Green Showroom, Andrea Klusener showed her Spring 2010 collection of beautiful dresses. Using draping and knotting techniques, Klusener transformed organic cotton and silk into dreamy frocks in a muted palette of light blues and grays.
For her label Caro-e, German designer Carolin Graening drew inspiration from the sea. Titled “My Life Aquatic,” Graening showed extraordinary sweaters and dresses handknit from organic cotton. Details included a beautifully draped sweaters or “shells,” along with delicate details in every piece.
Rianne De Witte showed a much more sophisticated and toned-down collection for spring, quite a departure from the bubble skirts and voluminous dresses that have been a consistent part of her line. For 2010, she showed organic cotton jumpsuits inspired by 1930s swimwear, as well as tailored and feminine dresses made from lyocell and organic cotton.