Wednesday 23 April 2014

fashion revolution

Can you believe it's been a year since the disaster in the Bangladesh garment factory that took over 1100 lives? As we reach this anniversary, many of us sustainable fashion advocates can't help but ask ourselves if anything has really changed.

On the one hand, fast fashion appears to still rule the day. H&M and Uniqlo have both recently opened their first stores in Australia, and Zara's Australian profits outrank sales in other countries. And judging by the number of times I hear phrases such as, "Oh this top? I got it for only $20!", I know that cheap, fast fashion isn't going anywhere, well, fast.

On the other hand, there have been quiet rumblings of hope. . . if you read certain blogs and magazines, or hang out in certain pop-up retailers and cafes, there is a definite fashion revolution underway. Little by little, considered-purchase by considered-purchase, the tide is turning . . .

More often than not this revolution starts with looking at your clothing's labeling, and pondering questions of materials and country of manufacture. And it grows with each conversation you have about an interesting local designer producing clothing here in Australia, or a label producing in a fair trade factory in India. And it's all culminating in this week's Fashion Revolution Day, 24 April 2014.

On 24 April, we're all asked to wear our clothes #InsideOut, see what's on the labels of our clothing, and start asking questions about the truth behind our labels.

Whether you have on a designer dress, your favourite Zara number or that top you love but you have no idea who made it - turn it #InsideOut and learn a little bit more about what you love to wear. And don't stress too much if you learn it wasn't made ethically; instead ask that favourite designer of yours to start changing their practices. That's when we'll really start to make a change.

So come on, what are you waiting for? Turn your clothes inside out, take a picture of yourself and post it to your Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #InsideOut

Viva la (Fashion) Revolucion!


Saturday 19 April 2014

clean cut designer showcase

I know, I know. I've been absent for awhile. But with good reason, I promise!  I finally finished the second edition of Sustainability with Style (more on that later), and I've started my PhD. Hooray!

In more recent news, last week the fabulous sustainable fashion start-up I'm working with, Clean Cut, hosted the first ever green runway as part of Sydney's Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week.

Here are some of the highlights from the Clean Cut Designer Showcase.

Backstage excitement! Thanks so much to Lush for being our Principal
Sponsor and also providing hair & makeup.
The clothes were meticulously organised, ready for fast changes
as we showed 8 different labels in one show.
First, I LOVED this dress I borrowed from Goodone,
a designer we featured in the showcase.
Second, I made my TV debut on Channel 10's Wake Up!
I was thrilled to have my mentor, Romilly Madew, as one
of the intro speakers, alongside Lisa Messenger from
Renegade Collective.
It was a full house at The Hughes Gallery - thanks again
for letting us use your space!
And check out the amazing greenery on the ceiling and
walls, the vision of the Flower Era.
A look into our goody bags - treats from Lush, ALAS,
EcoStore (another amazing sponsor of ours), Camper,
The Collective Magazine,
and the second edition
of Sustainability with Style!
And we're ready . . .
First up were some jaw-dropping gowns by
Rachael Cassar
, made with recycled materials.
We loved pairing these Bhalo dresses with the Sass & Bide
Made in Africa clutch.
We were thrilled to celebrate Desert Designs
first 'Made in Australia' collection.
Great little number from the Social Studio.
One of my favourite looks from Goodone.
Clean and chic by Ovna Ovich.
Some of the striking looks from Kowtow.
A few of the gorgeous pieces from Lalesso - made ethically
in Kenya, and some pieces made from recycled water bottles.
The Clean Cut team - happy and relieved at the end of a fab show!
One thing I know for sure, we couldn't have done this
without our extended sustainable fashion family.
Here's a pic with our colleagues from Peppermint Magazine,
Fashion Revolution and Ethical Clothing Australia.

Long after the excitement of our show, when all the
clothes had been packed away, the flowers taken
down and the Hughes Gallery put back to normal, we finally
had a moment to relax. We went to MBFW central, Carriageworks,
for a celebratory beverage and a snap of the four Clean Cut gals
in front of our official listing on the MBFW schedule.

Whew! What a ride. It's been a hectic few months planning all the details, and I couldn't be prouder to have been involved in this significant moment in Sydney fashion history.

Thank you so much to everyone who volunteered their time, skills, insights and energy to create this amazing event. And thanks to our PR team at New Future PR for getting this sustainable fashion news out far and wide!

If you want to see more of the fabulous fashion, check out our Facebook page, as well as the slide show on Marie Claire online. We'll be updating the Clean Cut website in the coming weeks with more photos, video, and news of what's next for Clean Cut.

For now, I'm off to relax and enjoy this long Easter weekend.