At New York City’s Green Festival on Sunday, Eileen Fisher, with help from “eco-fashion conspirator” Amy DuFault, also hosted a mini-fashion show featuring looks from its sustainable collections. The models—designer Carrie Parry; writers Greta Eagen, Jessica Marati, and Emma Grady; “one-woman army” Sass Brown; makeup artist Kristen Arnett; and Ecouterre’s Amanda Coen and Jasmin Malik Chua—weren’t your typical clotheshorses, but they each spoke about their passion for sustainability in fashion, along with the importance of living mindfully. For their curtain call, the group reemerged in matching “We’d Like Our Clothes Back Now” organic-cotton tank tops to draw attention to the initiative.
Green Eileen seeks to highlight the importance of examining a garment’s life cycle in its entirety.
But Green Eileen and its garment-take-back program aren’t just a way to channel funds to female-empowering organizations like Girls Inc., the New York Women’s Foundation, and Women for Women International. The initiative also seeks to highlight the importance of examining a garment’s life cycle—from the harvesting of its fibers to its final disposal—in its entirety.
Having its garments molder in a landfill isn’t something that appeals to Eileen Fisher. Longevity and versatility are key tenets of the label’s design philosophy, according to Cheryl Campbell, managing director of the Eileen Fisher Community Foundation, the altruistic arm of the company that manages the Green Eileen initiative. Eileen Fisher clothes are “worn for many seasons and do not fall into the ‘disposable fashion’ category,” she tells Ecouterre.
Should you tire of them, however, Green Eileen’s goal is to give those clothes a second or even third life. Still, all good things must come to an end. When the time comes when they’re no longer suitable for wearing, Campbell says their usefulness can be extended as children’s clothing, rugs, and other items.
To date, Green Eileen collected over 90,000 garments, raised $1.5 million and supported 21 organizations that improve the lives of women and girls in local, national, and global communities.
So send those clothes back. It’s a win for everyone.