Oh NYFW, how you tease us — especially those of us who are invested in sustainability and fashion’s future.. Multiple times a year top designers are handpicked to show their collections in front of hoards of celebrities, fashion elites, and socialites. The glitz and glamour prove difficult not to drool over, except for when the realization of the industry’s atrocities hits — both in terms of sustainability and human rights. To add insult to injury, the “week” has been shortened to 5 days, making it harder for smaller sustainable designers to participate. (Remake-approved Mara Hoffman has opted out for environmental reasons.) In light of this, I decided to round up a few of the brands which give hope to a more sustainable fashion week. All of these companies have long roads ahead of them when it comes to transparency, true sustainability, and commitments to ethical practices. However, each one shows promise and is worth watching.
3 Brands Focused on Sustainability at NYFW
Designer Becca McCharen-Tran established Chromat about five years ago. After recently opening a studio in Miami, Florida, McCharen-Tran has found inspiration from the ocean. For the brand’s Autumn/Winter 2019 show, the brand brought sustainability to the forefront of NYFW. climate change took center stage, making its way into the clothing, presentation, and programs. While McCharen-Tran feels increasingly passionate about raising awareness for environmental issues, parts of her clothing line also resonate with action. Since its inception, Chromat swimwear has been made out of Lycra created from used fishing nets, as well as deadstock and recycled fabrics. Fashionista also reports that the brand vets the factories that produce its clothing for fair labor practices.
Chromat presents on September 7th, 2019, during NYFW.
2. Collina Strada
Similar to Chromat, Collina Strada received attention for shining a spotlight on climate change last season. Its show and programs steered the audience towards ways to avoid single-use plastic and guidelines for proper recycling. Although that’s commendable, the real reason the brand makes this roundup is its inclusion of innovative materials. Collina Strada’s Autumn/Winter 2019 collection consisted of 75% deadstock fabric and beads made from recycled plastic in collaboration with 4 Ocean. This organization operates on a mission to clean up oceans and coastlines while simultaneously attempting to stop the ocean plastic issue altogether. Collina Strada’s designer, Hillary Taymour, explained to Fashionista that working towards implementing more sustainable practices into the fashion business has become a priority for her. As the brand continues to grow, hopefully so will its investment in ethical and sustainable fashion.
Collina Strada presented on February 7th, 2019, during NYFW.
3. Rosie Assoulin
Rosie Assoulin founded her brand in 2014, and she found her way to mass popularity without the kind of background many other designers have: a fashion school degree. Rosie Assoulin did not go to fashion school, and instead, apprenticed until she felt comfortable enough to make it on her own. Last year, Vogue Australia interviewed the designer about her journey and interest in ethical practices. As the publication reported, Rosie Assoulin collections are often manufactured in New York City’s Garment District, resulting in the designer making frequent visits to factories, and ultimately, giving her more creative control. In addition to producing local, Rosie Assoulin avoids the use of animal products. The brand made a conscious decision to keep any fur or animal skins out of its clothing because the founder believes a beautiful garment can be made without them. This choice ultimately lowers Rosie Assoulin’s carbon footprint, earning it kudos during February’s NYFW for taking sustainability to heart.
Rosie Assoulin presented on February 12th, 2019, during NYFW.
*Chromat, Collina Strada, and Rosie Assoulin have not yet earned Remake’s Seal of Approval.
Lead Image: Flaunter.com/Unsplash