With growing consciousness about our responsibility to conserve our natural resources, lovers of fashion are finding themselves being presented with more environmentally friendly clothing and accessory choices than ever before. Here’s a look at some of the most exciting eco-friendly fashion trends on the horizon.
Truly Eco-friendly Leather
From animal waste to the curing and tanning process, leather (typically derived from cattle) is known for being detrimental to the environment. Even the common, synthetic alternative– made from petroleum derivatives– fares no better. That’s where real eco-friendly leather comes in. There are brands now making leather out of anything from wood pulp to fruit. The German company Deepmello, amazingly, even makes a leather out of rhubarb roots: rhabarberleder®.
Vintage is Back
What’s old is new again as trends come back around to reusing older clothing. Gone is the need to keep up with the year’s ephemeral fashions; fashionistas are now feeling free to look to the past for sartorial inspiration. Reusing not only reduces the amount of trash in landfills, it saves garment factories from creating excess air and water pollution.
Shipping items back and forth can get expensive, not to mention frustrating. Online shopping has revealed a need for companies to get their customers’ exact sizes correct on the first try; that’s where custom on-demand services come in. Instead of stocking warehouses full of goods, companies such as Pringle of Scotland and Eileen Fisheremploy knitting machines to create custom fitted garments to the customer’s specifications in less than a day. And celebrated designers Catherine Wales and Diana Law have succeeded in using 3D printing to produce luxury jewelry and other accessories.
Greenwashing is the concept of a company knowingly misrepresenting its products as eco-friendly; many big brands have been caught in the act lying to their customers about their company’s commitment to sustainability. This is why other brands, like outdoor-wear brand Patagonia and Eileen Fisher, have vowed to implement strict monitoring of their supply chains, use organic components to create their goods whenever possible, and to make sure their workers are well-paid and not mistreated.
Consumers have become more discerning about the origins and fate of the clothing they purchase, and the world of fashion waits with bated breath for the eco-friendly future of adornment.