After the Rana Plaza collapse that killed more than 1100 factory workers in 2013, there are no more excuses for the Fashion Industry to continue its traditional practices. Since the Bangladeshi tragedy the Global Movement Fashion Revolution is demanding for more transparency, sustainability and ethics within the industry. I participated in Fashion Revolution Week in Paris this April asking brands #WhoMadeMyClothes.
Fashion Revolution Paris had loads going on – from talks and workshops to film screenings. I discovered a dynamic movement of fashion lovers promoting a greater transparency in the fashion supply chain. With passion and determination, they are raising awareness on the necessity of a radical change on the way fashion is made, sourced and consumed.
Several French brands which put ethics at the centre of their business shared their choices and explained their approaches during the week. The ‘Made in France’ trend is increasing, organic cotton is more and more used, upcycling techniques are widespread, and women’s empowerment adds a real value to some projects.
This is encouraging, especially in a context where the biggest fashion brands are moving slowly. Whilst some bigger brands are publishing their supplier lists, the 2017 Fashion Transparency Index shows the lack of information regarding the impacts of fashion industry practices. We do not know enough about the impact our clothing has on people and planet…. and we definitely need to know!
Fashion Revolution believes laws and regulations are key to transforming the Fashion Industry. Consumers’ practices are also decisive, we need to buy less, buy better and keep asking questions about the realities behind what we’re purchasing. We need to love the clothes we already own more and work harder to make them last.
Mindsets are clearly beginning to shift, but sustainability needs to become a central driver of consumers’ purchasing decisions. So we need to stay mobilised the whole year to put pressure on policymakers and fashion industry. We have the power to insure our clothing is made in a safe, clean and fair way. So let’s do it & Vive la mode!
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