In association with:
Contributor Sarah Ditty
SOURCE speaks to Shari Keller from Mehera Shaw, a fair trade manufacturer in India, about everything designers and brands need to know about manufacturing fashion products with artisanal and small – medium sized suppliers in India.
Contributor Ethical Fashion Forum
Bangladesh NEVER AGAIN: We surveyed and liaised with our members and partner organisations to draw up and issue a collaborative industry response to the Bangladesh factory collapse – a Value Chain Call to Action. Here is the first full draft, please contact us with your thoughts.
Contributor Shaina Shealy
How can western brands collaborate with global artisans to generate social impact, garner meaningful cross-cultural connections and produce financially viable, quality products on time? SOURCE contributor Shaina Shealy speaks to four brands who work with artisans to make their products, she collates 5 key tips to making great products and building lasting relationships. Image: Raven + Lily
Contributor Loula Mercedes
The first report in a series on sustainable fashion in Colombia, SOURCE Contributor Loula Mercedes travelled to Corseda factory in el Cauca to meet Dayse Delgado, General Manager, who shared with her their business story and how obstacles brought new possibilities for success.
Contributor Ethical Fashion Forum
Taking place ONLINE 4th-5th February, SOURCE Brand Preview is the Global Showcase for Sustainable Fashion. Through 2 days and 12 targeted seminars, Brand Preview will showcase sustainable fashion brands from across the globe to hundreds of buyers, retailers and press. Exhibitor registration is now open.
5 minutes with... Amber Valetta
Amber Valletta is a fashion icon, actress and humanitarian. She is currently working on a new business venture – A socially responsible fashion and lifestyle brand called Master & Muse.
Sustainable fashion is important because we have run out of time. In general, consumers and producers alike need to pay more attention to how garments are sourced and made. We need to understand how our purchasing decisions affect people and planet.
Our resources (human and natural) are being exploited with the delusion that we won’t pay the price. However, we will continue to have environmental disasters and human tragedies like Rana Plaza if we don’t change course.
Fashion is aspirational and needs to bring its creative forces to solve these issues.
I discovered that there are many fashion brands that have terrific design at their core yet they need visibility and a platform. Hence Master & Muse was born.
I am continually inspired by the collaborative nature and willingness to share information between perceived competitors. We all seem to align on values and what is really important, knowing that we have to work together to promote real and necessary change.
Lastly, I was surprised to find out how many high end luxury designers are actually very interested in collaborating to create products that are more sustainable.
Sustainable fashion offers an incredible business opportunity through problem solving, innovation, and vision. We must start by educating the consumer. People don’t realize where or how their clothes are being made and the effect it has on our world.
We have to re-think consumerism and waste. We need to raise the awareness on these issues across all platforms. There is an opportunity for innovation in textile use, re-use and waste. By building factories that take the textile waste fibers and create new materials we can create a whole new industry waiting to burst just from waste.
As a business, we understand that how we run our business including a sustainable business model that values people and planet as much as profit is key for real change to take hold. Research has shown that companies that invest in sustainability outperform others. For the continuing growth of this market, we have talked about creating an incubator for sustainable brands, raising capital and mentoring them.
Investing in sustainable fashion is the right thing to do, but also makes real financial sense.
I think we are experiencing the beginning of a very exciting time in sustainable fashion. Similar to what happened with the organic food movement, people will demand for the fashion industry to become more transparent and responsible. My hope is that the fashion industry will rise to this challenge and use their creativity to inspire and create a renaissance in fashion.
Start with great design. Be creative problem solvers. I think in order to compete in the market place you have to design clothes that are desirable.
Be discerning about where you source your fabrics, how are they made and by whom. Ask yourself can I produce locally? I recommend getting connected to a group such as Ethical Fashion Forum’s SOURCE platform so that you have support.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to push the envelope, fashion loves risk takers!