#MBFWB: Green Showroom

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

For the past few years human nutrition and lifestyle in general have been going through incredible changes: it's as if we finally realized eating healthy only benefits us; we realized the good we get from the exercise; we ditched junk food... OK, most of it. (A pizza a month is good for the soul, isn't it?!) But after taking care of ourselves, we also decided to look at the big picture and look after Mother Earth. I've heard of people going vegetarian or vegan not necessarily just because of their love for animals, but because growing plants is more Earth friendly than farming. Recycling is becoming a thing. Sustainability is becoming a thing. So a lot of fashionistas and designers out there decided to take this path too. Let's create kind fashion!

A great portion of this year's #MBFWB SS 2016 was dedicated to eco fashion. An entire location was about sustainable fashion, having an international trade fair for three days - the Green Showroom. The fair showed new as well as established labels' products that reconcile luxury and design with sustainability. The highlight of the fair was the Salonshow, a catwalk show "Ethical Fashion on Stage", presenting 25 designers.

And apparently, just because something is labeled as 'sustainable', 'eco', 'green', 'ethical', doesn't mean it's boring! The pieces I've seen as just as good looking as any other, and a lot of times way more creative. I mean, can you imagine a piece of cloth that becomes a shirt and not one single piece is discarded in the process?

Eco fashion manufacturers take care of every step of their designs coming alive. The materials they use are organic, sustainable and made locally; they often come from artisans and are hand-crafted. Their color is also natural, as they are dyed with tea, for example, or other plants. It they have prints, chances are they are printed by hand. Sometimes, as mentioned before, a square piece of garment turns into a skirt or a shirt of an unusual form, because it stays whole - only changed. These manufacturers care about the social circumstances of people who make their garments. And they share their stories: they want the customers to care, too, and to at least know how their clothes or accessories are made, where and by whom. 

One of my favorites was the Zurita stall. Zurita is the Chilean brand founded by Gabriela Farias Zurita, who was kind enough to explain all about the process of her work to me. The designer works closely with Aymara women artisans from the high plateau in the far north of Chile and tailors of Santiago, promoting knowledge and appreciation of traditional crafts as a source of cultural identity. The designer connects design, fashion and craftmanship respecting and understanding the three as equally important.

Photo: zurita.co

Tauko makes clothes and accessories out of materials that have had a purpose, but cannot fulfill it anymore - such as sheets in hospitals or hotels that are damaged enough to be a waste, but good enough to recycle. TAUKO cooperates with local textile maintenance companies to source the materials for our production. This cooperation attempts to find the most sustainable and environmentally friendly ways to modify the raw materials, while aiming for as little as production waste as possible. As they claim on their website: in short, TAUKO is about going nuts about new ideas and making them work!

The second photo: taukodesign.fi 

An interesting concept awaited me at the Farrah Floyd stall. Basically, the idea around which the whole Farrah Floyd design revolves is zero-waste. Bojana Drača, the designer behind the label, only uses rectangle pattern pieces, and using a special zero-waste cutting technique she has developed, she transforms 2D forms into 3D. This leads to absolutely unique and recognizable style, if you ask me!

The second photo: Mercedes-Benz Fashion

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