By its very nature, fashion is disposable. Trends change from season to season. What is worn one year is not the next. For apparel companies, it’s always a race to meet the voracious demand of consumers. On the supply side, production is extremely resource intensive, both in terms of labor and natural resources. The process of making textiles can require several dozen gallons of water for each pound of clothing. Added together, supply and demand make quite an equation for waste couture.
Luckily a general shift is afoot. In this, the age of Project Runway, consumers seem to be turning a corner. According to the New York Times, fast fashion may be going out of fashion. People might just be ready to welcome the era of eco-couture.
This past week, couture cognoscenti flocked to Fashion Week in New York, hoping to catch a glimpse of the hottest 2010 Spring/Summer trends. As evidence of this shift, The Green Shows (a special event showcasing several eco-design houses under one roof) drew an even larger crowd than last year, in this, only its sophomore year at Fashion Week.
San Francisco-based Mr. Larkin drew rave reviews for their smart collection that was at once ethereal and eminently wearable. Chicago-based designer Lara Miller debuted her collection, whose architectural construction made use of everything from recycled-PET-fleece to hand-loomed cotton. Bahar Shapar’s new collection appealed to the inner warrior. Izzy Lane rocked retro while perennial eco-fave Bodkin took to the air this season with nebulous layers of floating fabrics.
News of the hottest looks to be seen on the runways at The Green Shows has been quick to spread thanks to blogs like Treehugger and Inhabitat’s newest blog, Ecouterre. The fact that The Green Shows continue to draw attention demonstrates that eco-design is finally starting to make an impact on mainstream culture. Hopefully the era of waste couture has come to its penultimate chapter and the future of fashion really is eco-design.