Friday, September 25, 2009

London and New Fashion Weeks: Green Shows

It is so exciting to see the Green/Eco sections of two of the world’s biggest fashion weeks, growing in strength each season. One of my biggest fears over the past twelve months is that green fashion would suffer in a time when people are looking for cheap alternatives. Designers would lose funding, boutiques will close down etc etc. However, it seems that the designers are demonstrating that eco fashion is not just a trend but a growing way of life that will be here for a long time to come.

The Green Show debuted this season at New York Fashion Week and it took New York City by storm, demonstrating that Eco Fashion is every bit as trendy worthy as mainstream designers.

More on the designers and collections at
Esthetica @ London Fashion Week: The Green Shows @ New York Fashion Week

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Ethical Fashion Forum: Article Africa and Fashion

I just wanted to share this recent article written for the Ethical Fashion Forum

Sub-Saharan Africa loses about 5% of GDP through shrinking trade income, or some $28.4 billion annually, a figure that exceeded total aid flows and debt relief to the region in 2003. (2006 UN Human Development Report)

Poverty is a daily battle for millions of people in Sub Saharan Africa. Life expectancy at birth was 46 in 2004, as opposed to an average of 67 for the rest of the world. Infant mortality is more than double the global average at 102 per 1000 live births (2004) 45% of the population lives on less than $1 a day, and an estimated 25,000000 people are living with AIDS (2003)

At the same time, the world’s consumers are spending around US$1 trillion worldwide buying clothes. Clothing and textiles represent about seven per cent of world exports. Through the ethical fashion movement, opportunities exist for African fashion businesses to successfully compete in a lucrative international market for fashion

Fashion: Made in Africa

Trade in fashion products provides key opportunities for communities in Africa. Fashion is labour intensive, requires limited capital input, and with good design, traditional skills bring a high premium. In Kenya, statistics show that every job in the garment sector in Kenya generates 5 other jobs. In Lesotho, thanks to the apparel industry (representing 94% of merchandise exports) GDP per capita increased from $558 in 2001 to
$3000 in 2004.

The current demand for sustainable sourcing, coupled with innovation in skills and recycling and organic cotton, creates a USP for Fashion from Africa, and an important opportunity to boost trade.