Excuse me why I just slip into my organic fair trade fashion wear.
This week all eyes are on ethical fashion and organic everything. And despite a credit crunch we could all be getting greener as a consequence according to Alice Thomson of the Times.
Also this week I’m working late hours writing a book for a major publisher on Ethical Marketing & the New Consumer (due to be published in Feb 09).
If anyone wishes to contribute case studies, research data or some really great stories please contact me via this blog or email me at book site – firstname.lastname@example.org.
This week is organic fortnight and the Soil Association are running events and activities all over the UK with the Scottish Organic Food Festival on September 20-21st. While the supermarkets offer us discounts and incentives to buy greener greens a recent survey suggest that organics is leveling off – the credit crunching is crunching organics.
A piece in the Times by Alice Thomson ‘Suddenly being green isn’t green anymore’ reflects on how ironically the economic downturn is making us all greener – we drive less, waste less energy, food and therefore packaging. She thinks the salads days are over (quoting the MORI and Organic Monitor polls). She had an amusing pop at Julie Burchill, commenting “she thinks all environmentalists are po-faced, unsexy, public school alumni who drivel on about the end of the world because they don’t want the working classes to have any fun, go on foreign holidays or buy cheap clothes.”
It’s also London Fashion Week – exciting for some, amusing for others.
However, it’s good to see that many ethical fashion brands are getting noticed. Can I make a plea that people stop equating hemp to sack cloth. Few people seem to be aware that hemp t-shirts are softer then cotton and use half as much water to produce, unfortunately they cost twice as much.
The London Fashion Week has seen a growing number of ethical fashion brands, designers and events year on year encourage by groups like estethica. Ironically, the credit crunch could also encourage people to look at clothes differently.
Primark (and other cheap fashion shops) are loving the credit crunch and stand to dominate the high street with there ‘fast fashion’ approach, providing credit crunched consumers with clothes that are so disposable it’s not work washing and as a consequence causing a landfill problem. And the government is worried about direct mail (only 2% of household waste)! But while some buy cheap tat, others actually look for longer term value – clothes that last – and most ethical fashion is well made. Or they learn to recycle or remake – a popular trend in Australia.
Ethical fashion – or ‘eco-sustainable fashion as it’s now called – has grown up a lot over the last few years and designs have got hotter. Adili sponsored the Make Your Mark In Fashion event to find young designers. The winner was a girl who’d been working at Junky Styling (a winner at this years’ Observer Ethical Awards). Junky also sponsor a young designers event. Even though the ridiculous prices to get on the cartwalks may be a barrier to small ethical fashion producers it could also keep it one step away from the pompous and stupid end of the fashion market.
Personally I’d rather see an Edinburgh Fringe style of event, it feels more honest.
In a dog eat dog world, RSPCA has dumped Crufts because they are not happy about the ethics of some dog breeders and concerns over the high rate of inherited genetic disease among pedigree dogs. Good on them. Now there’s pressure on the BBC to pull out too, who started the issue with a programme they made called Pedigree Dogs Exposed. The discussion between the RSPCA and a representative from the Kennel Club on the radio got very heated – she lost the plot and did themselves no favors. Meoow