Sunday, April 28, 2013

Wearing your food - sustainable fashion

We live in exciting times where our challenges become a fuel for creations. Upcycling is where art, innovation, fun and caring for the environment marry: creating new from old, repurposing the not-needed, wearing our waste.

Hundreds projects have been presented where waste played the role of clothing. Repurposed plastic dresses, or paper fashion. They all point out to the fact that headless consumerism is uncool. While one could argue what is the "right level of consumerism", one thing is clear to most: Our rate of consuming supersedes, by far, our waste management efforts. 

Plastic bottles wedding dress, Ecouterre

Heaps of trash, even if redistributed or recycled at current rate, will not diminish if we do not cut on the speed at which we acquire our stuff. That makes me wonder what would world look like if our economy functioned in a closed circular loop just like nature where the old is a base of something new. Seemingly, the only solution to our wastefulness of all kinds...

A fashion designer, Hoyan Ip rises an interesting food for thought in claiming there is not much new in the fashion industry, most trends are re-interpreted season by season. With her Bio-Trimmings project she asks interesting questions and acts on what has been lately brought to our attention from many corners: wasted food. So can we wear our food waste?

Hoyan Ip's repurposed food

"As there are more and more designers emerging, there is very little we can do to dispose of the unwanted clothes ethically especially when you realise such sensitivity and thought has gone into making a garment. The solution is to re-use the clothes, de-brand them, repair them and wear them. However, for those who swear by iconic brands such as Chanel may disagree on what this project proposes. It changes the psychology of consumers on what we think about brands." 

The question is whether "adding products made from wasted food de-value the brand or add value to it because of its ethical reasons. Trimmings such as buttons, metal buckles and zips are all manufactured industrially where there are concerns on the impact it has on the environment as it consumes a lot of energy and fuel." (Source: Hoyan Ip)

To me, consuming is uncool. A new fashion is to care. 

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