ETHICAL FASHION IN BERLIN
Berlin Fashion week, taking place last week includes the ethical fashion show by Messe Frankfurt. where brands and designers from around the globe have been showcasing fashion products from sustainable, recycled and natural products to highlight the power and flexibility of the ethical fashion movement. From stone shoes to pineapple fibres and plant material, this year’s show pushed the boundaries and set the senses alight.
Fast Fashion, and the awareness around the waste, harmful chemicals and difficulty in biodegrading or recycling the fibres produced, has fuelled cutting edge designers to look for more sustainable ways of finding clothing and new looks for the ever increasing number of shoppers who are concerned with how, what and where their products are being produced.
UPCYCLING IN KOREA
Textiles recycling was showing itself moving from strength to strength with the likes of Re:Code, a South Korean brand who focuses on “upcycling” of materials from all kinds of pasts, from the normal to the bizarre and beautiful. Selections of upholstery from end of life cars, and other parts, airbags are driving new fashion lines in men’s and women’s clothing, forming their “Industrial Collection”. Ex-army Tents and other ex-military camo gear are upcycled to produce another of their innovative lines.
FASHION USING NATURAL PRODUCTS
Munich Shoe brand Nat-2’s collaboration with Berlin’s Roxxlyn showcased the stone shoes and stone shoe accessories which lighted up the imaginations. They produce phone covers made from stone, emphasising the way their products feel, not just look.
Shingle (fine stone) is also used in a cutting edge manufacturing process which is processed in Italy which is used by the company along with a range of other natural products including glass, wood and cork.
Portuguese label Light Factory were showcasing alternatives to heavy printing press manufacturing by using light-activated eco-colours and the power of the sun to produce the patterns on their t-shirts, whilst German based Ethical brand Jan `N June, showcased incredible blouses made from recycled plastic bottles and polyester produced from recycling these items was a revolutionary breakthrough by their founders adhering to Global Recycling standards.
Maravillas Bags, based out of Mallorca were showcasing the fibre bags made from pineapple fabrics, as an important part of their vegan friendly handbag lines, which have properties which could be used for many future products, with the fibres mimicking the water-resistant, and durable nature of leather.
They also pioneer using natural dyes made from roots and barks to naturally dye their leather goods, avoiding the use of any harmful chemicals.
THE FUTURE OF ETHICAL FASHION
Overall the demand on designers to find ways to change the market and prove that we can find new ways of using natural and sustainable materials in the products that are cutting edge fashion was clear.
As brands look to find new connectivity with consumers who are becoming increasingly aware of the issues surrounding overseas manufacturing, environmental damage and poor working conditions, they seem to be finding encouraging and inspiring new solutions, proving that fashion's future is one that encompasses a beautiful synergy between ethics, sustainability and inspiring design.