Call to action from XR to Swarm at London Fashion Week, February 2019 Last week CSF hosted Sara Arnold to talk about Extinction Rebellion (XR). Sara had been involved with the direct action that took place across London earlier in April. She was also active during London Fashion Week back in February – highlighting climate change as an urgent issue for the industry to address. Sara talked to CSF’s Elliot about her thoughts on power, education, direct action and fashion. If yo
Photo by Samantha Sophia On International Women’s Day this year we reflect on the title of last year’s exhibition at the Design Museum. What is the interplay between them when it comes to fashion and sustainability? And what can we make of these words in a Post-Weinstein #TimesUp #MeToo world? What of Women. Fashion. Power… 100 years after some women got the vote? When women’s bodies are still commented on and evaluated publicly with private consequences? When women still ear
CSF Professor Kate Fletcher calls for more voices to be heard and amplified in discussions around fashion and sustainability. Here and on her blog she writes of the need for a deep look at the values currently promoted within the fashion industry and a greater understanding of the structural shift that is needed if we are to protect and nurture the environment. We’d love to hear your thoughts and insights, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or through our s
The Laundry Pile and is the launch of CSF’s Prof. Kate Fletcher’s new book Opening up the Wardrobe. Emma completed her PhD at CSF last year. Through the lens of domestic laundry, her research has explored how fashion design, resource consumption and sustainability are tied into social practices. *** While about as routine and mundane as it gets, laundry is often overlooked as an extremely resource intensive and polluting practice. It annually uses up massive quantities of fin
On December 22, 2016, Los Angeles based clothing company American Apparel closed the doors of its London shops for the last time, after filing for bankruptcy for the second time that year in November. The question is why? And also, why should we care? Well, a little background to American Apparel. It was founded in 1989 by notorious Canadian Dov Charney. It was unique in the contemporary fashion market in that all its garments were, in its own words, ‘designed, cut and sewn i
LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 14: (L to R) Dilys Williams, Director of Centre for Sustainable Fashion at London College of Fashion, award winners Elise Comrie and Agraj Jain, and Beatrice Lazat, Human Resources Director at Kering,attend the 2016 Kering Talk at the London College of Fashion on November 14, 2016 in London, England.
Pic Credit: Dave Benett Last week we announced the winners of the Kering Award for Sustainable Fashion at the third annual Kering Talk, and they were a
‘Can Fast Fashion Ever Be Ethical?’ That was the question we posed to our panel and audience at last week’s debate, co-hosted with the Ethical Trading Initiative. The question of the ethics of fast fashion is, admittedly, too big to be answered in the course of a ninety minute event, but the speakers, including Dilys, Lars-Ake Begqvist, Sustainability expert for H&M, Liz Parker, whose deep understanding of workers rights issues includes having led Fashioning and Ethical Indus
‘I love watching everyone’s presentations rehearsals and hearing about their projects,’ one Kering Award finalist stated last week. ‘It’s like doing a Master’s degree in sustainability!’ I have to agree. I’ve worked at the Centre for Sustainable Fashion for three months, the final three months of the 2016 Kering Award for Sustainability, which culminated in presentations by nine exceptionally talented and creative students at Kering’s London headquarters last week. It really
May 17 is International Recycle Day. We are all well aware of the importance of recycling- it’s been drilled into us repeatedly over the last decade, and heralded as the easy, DIY way to save the planet- or least do your bit. Of course, recycling does have its merits- recycling a single run of a Sunday paper, for example, saves over 70,000 trees- and it’s something simple and easy that anyone can do at home: it’s just a case of putting waste in a different bin, right? But how
Second-hand clothing is somewhat contentious. Buying used clothing, quite obviously, is one of the easiest ways to improve your fashion sustainability, however, clothing brands will never encourage it, as their business model revolves around consumers buying more and more, at an ever increasing pace, new clothes. Used clothes are often imbued with a poetic sense of loss, a reminder of the body that once inhabited them. My MA History of Dress teacher, for example, admitted tha
Guest post by LCF student Alice Davidson The more I learn about the industry, the more I consider and question the ethics of the consumption and manufacture of fast fashion. Subcontracting has enabled companies to evade responsibility for the people who make clothes for them, and accountability of any environmental as a result of production processes. This industry is something, in a society where we can now globally communicate and connect, desperately seeking our question.
Kate Fletcher’s latest book Craft of Use: Post-Growth Fashion was published last week, launching with it a whole series of questions for debate and discussion about the life of a garment after it is bought. The book recognises that garments that are bought as a product are lived as a process, and that the way we use and wear our clothes can be more valuable and interesting than the state in which they were bought. Flicking through the pages of Craft of Use, I discovered the s
We asked guest speaker Eleanor Snare to reflect after her LCF Manifestos talk… Once you’ve come up with an innovative idea for fashion as sustainability, how do you put it into practice? Talking to fashion consumers about innovative ideas appears simple: fashion is built on renewal and change, so new things are likely to be readily accepted. But ‘innovations in fashion’ might mean a trend, a colour palette, a new silhouette; they’re unlikely to require us to significantly cha
Fashion is in turns captivating, distracting, satisfying, sometimes bringing a bit of the extraordinary to every day life, and often connecting people and cultures with wonderful results. It is amazing to think that an industry that has often been described as frivolous spans so much of the world and impacts so many people and places – perhaps more than most industries. It is not known exactly how many people currently work in the multi-trillion dollar global fashion industry
Tansy Hoskins at with Susie Orbach at the launch. Photo by Ruby Wright There hasn’t yet been a book that links fashion and capitalism so directly, so ‘Stitched Up. The Anti-Capitalist Book of Fashion’ by Tansy Hoskins, is something of a first and Tansy teases and picks at the threads of the industry, pulling them to unravel dark undersides that are, so she argues, caused by the system that governs the fashion industry – capitalism. At the book launch last week, fashion and it