After watching powerhouse designers and the most elite brands in fashion bombard the runways during NYFW, we at Lux & Eco were reminded not only of our fanatic for fashion, but of our behavior as buyers. While we often focus on the trend and quality of our treasured apparel, the reality is that clothing is a commodity that needs to reach 7 billion people in some shape or form. Mass production is inevitable, and in this case even logical. But the current practices of cotton farming and textile manufacturing are now recognized as the leading causes of environmental degradation, including loss of biodiversity and human health risks from pollution. Fashion is an art, and the fabric itself the canvas. So how can we as consumers continue to indulge in our passion for the luxurious without leaving such a heavy footprint on the environment? More importantly, how can such a transition be adopted on a global level?
Set to launch in time for next year’s fall Fashion Week, though clearly inspiring runways and purchasers already, is the documentary THREAD, where producer Marci Zaroff addresses such possibilities as fashion meeting environment, quality balancing with quantity, and consumer consciousness driving the whole force. The term ECOfasion, a fitting description of such a vision, was first thought up by Marci herself, encompassing her belief in a coexistence of appreciating fashion and protecting the environment. Says the ECOfashion trailblazer, “my mission is to revolutionize the global fashion and textile industries, driving sustainability through inspiration, education, innovation, and collaboration.” Marci uses her talents as a fashion-forward entrepreneur and die-hard environmentalist to create a film where organic practices are used by conscious designers, all fueled by a market of responsible consumers. The film focuses on the power of awareness and how a simple education of the facts can change an entire market-driven industry.
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/51723971 w=400&h=300]
The documentary features testimonials from designers and models, farmers and factory workers, health experts and even victims. The United States is still using genetically modified cotton seeds for 90% of its crops, specifically under Monstano. The land used to farm on is now completely void of species diversity, as are the ecosystems surrounding it. Textile manufacturing in developing nations like China is one of the largest consumers of water as well. After taking so much from the land, what does the industry give back? Conventional farmers are developing conditions as serious as brain tumors by mid-age. The contamination from pesticide runoff combined with coal emissions from factories makes clothing production the second leading cause of water pollution, and just as detrimental to air quality. THREAD highlights these issues as well as the individuals and associations on a mission to prevent them, including model and etymologist Summer Rayne Oaks, designer Gary Harvey, and The International Working Group on Global Organic Textile Standard.
The film calls for government assistance in policy creation and enforcement. It asks for farmers to adopt organic practices. It asks investors and those in the fashion business to pioneer a new trend. And most importantly it asks us as the ones demanding the end product to reevaluate our criteria for material. Already providing eco-friendly luxury fashion for you, Lux & Eco has taken THREAD‘s vow to “join the rising tide of fashionistas with a conscience” and hope this documentary and the evolving world of ECOfashion inspires you to see that sustainability can come without compromise!