Sustainability in the News: Sustainable Fashion

With the award season in full swing and the Oscars airing this Sunday, this is one of the high points in the fashion calendar. But is there room for sustainability in the fashion industry? Sustainable fashion, a branch of ethical fashion, is more than donations to charitable causes but a commitment to using environmentally-friendly materials and methods in clothes production.


The world of sustainable fashion is a diverse one: from upcycling (turning textile waste in new clothes) to the passing out of toxic chemicals and reducing the amount of water used in manufacturing. In 2014, this is a growing aspect of the industry and projects such as AWEAR 2014 which inspires us to think about how our clothes are made and ‘Fashion Revolution Day’ on the 24th of April show this is more than a passing trend.


There are many celebrity and high-profile people are getting behind sustainable fashion, such as Stella McCartney, Natalie Portman and Jennifer Aniston. One of the most famous sustainable fashion experiments was conducted by Livia Firth, wife of Colin Firth, who attempted in 2010 to wear only sustainable outfits when accompanying her nominated husband through the 2010 award season.


As ideas about sustainability become increasingly mainstream, and continue to go to the heart of the issues of manufacturing, the fashion industry is showing itself to have more depth than you might expect.


If you’re interested in finding out more about Sustainable Fashion,  take a look at The Sustainable Fashion Handbook by Sandy Black, published by Thames & Hudson. It’s touted to be the definitive sourcebook on all aspects of sustainable fashion.

By Action 21 volunteer Grace Organ