Fashion Revolution Week runs from 18th-24th April this year. This annual event centres around the anniversary of the Rana Plaza Factory collapse in April 2013, which tragically killed 1,138 people and injured many more. The theme for this year’s Fashion Revolution Week is MONEY FASHION POWER.
The mainstream fashion industry is built upon the exploitation of labour and natural resources. Wealth and power are concentrated in the hands of a few, and growth and profit are rewarded above all else. Big brands and retailers produce too much too fast, and manipulate us into a toxic cycle of overconsumption. Meanwhile, the majority of people that make our clothes are not paid enough to meet their basic needs, and already feel the impacts of the climate crisis – which the fashion industry fuels.
As global citizens, we all have the power to take action. Now is the time to rise up together for a regenerative, restorative and revolutionary new fashion system. Now is the time for a Fashion Revolution.
Throughout the week, the Fashion Revolution organisation will be asking citizens to get involved by asking brands #WhoMadeMyClothes and #WhatsInMyClothes challenging policymakers to take action on living wages. They invite people to tell their fashion love stories to make #LovedClothesLast. There are also resources for Fashion Revolution Week for brands and retailers, producers, trade unions and students and educators to take part, including how to host their own event.
A variety of online and offline events will take place during the week. Highlights include Good Clothes, Fair Pay: Living wages in the global fashion industry, a panel discussion with policy experts, Around the World of Fashion Revolution, an Instagram Live chat with global fashion revolutionaries, and Money Fashion Power book club, a fireside discussion around Fashion Revolution’s fanzine.
Fashion Open Studio is Fashion Revolution’s showcasing and mentoring initiative. The Fashion Open Studio took up residency with their ‘Showcase With A Difference‘ in February at The Lab E20, East London’s new creative hub located in East Village.
Throughout April, they will celebrate pioneering designers through a programme of free events that demonstrate alternative business models and honour the people who make our clothes. Designers from Chile, Egypt, USA, Venezuela, South Korea, Zimbabwe, Czech Republic, France, Bangladesh and the UK will be taking part. Through short films, conversations, studio tours and workshops, attendees will be inspired to make changes across the industry as well as in their own wardrobes.
Find a whole list of talks and events hosted by the Fashion Open Studio.
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‘Sustainable fashion’ is no longer new-news. As consumers more of us are looking for transparency. The majority of us have come to buy less – buy better – and more responsibly. Instead of throwing out, we sell our pieces on – take the year-on-year growth of the Gen-Z hotbed that is Depop.
Or why buy when you can borrow? Fashion rental apps are bringing flexibility and sustainability right to our phones. LOANHOOD is the newest on the scene, offering a clothes borrowing and rental service, where you can loan out your own pieces and borrow others: “Our mission is to change the way people experience fashion and revolutionise the fashion system through positive actions. LOANHOOD is the fashion rental app for people wanting to make more money, wear more clothes, and do something good for the planet. Look good. Do good,” says co-founder Lucy Hall.
And for those who are looking to invest in something that they can cherish forever, check out some of the designers doing (real) good and making waves, from East London based Raeburn whose responsibly made fashion line puts the planet first. The RÆMADE ethos in particular has pioneered the re-working of surplus fabrics and garments to create distinctive, functional pieces that are ethical.
Raeburn’s fascination with military materials sees him create limited edition outerwear for both men and women, from wool field jackets to nylon parachute canopies. His staple parachutes can be found hanging from The Lab E20 creative hub in East Village, a space designed by Christopher Raeburn himself.
To feel inspired by the movement all year round, head to The Lab E20 to hear from some of fashion’s most innovative movers and shakers, attend craft workshops, fashion talks & pop-up markets so that we can make, create, mend, learn and ultimately all make better choices.
So, whether you’re mad for fashion, you work in the industry, are keen to hear about the latest in innovation, craftmanship and business, or you’re passionate about the planet, watch this space.