There is a new movement called sustainable fashion, eco fashion also known as ethical fashion. It aims at reducing the negative impact of humans on the environment while focussing on heightened social responsibility towards procurement of fashion.
Sustainable fashion revolves around the manufacture of eco friendly and organic cloth which is pesticide free and dyed using natural ingredients. In the process of such manufacture to ensure that fair and ethical measures are employed.
In the early 1980s and 90s the owners of a few top worldwide clothing brands realised that the environment was being harmed in the production and manufacturing process of clothes and textiles. They reassessed the fibres that they were using and restructured their processes to use organic fibres such as organic cotton, natural wool, natural dyes, dyes that caused lesser harm to the air and water and low in toxicity. Now the movement has caught on and there are a lot of companies which focus on using such organic and low impact cloth in the manufacture of their garments.
The Deepsum Pink Box Clutch is made with raw silk and the handwork on it supports local artisans.
The fashion industry is one of the top pollutants in the world; therefore the industry aims also at using recycled and up cycled fibres. Earlier these were a little rough and raw and the feel of such garments was itchy. Now with the up scaling of technology, one cannot make out the difference in fibres anymore.
The other entwined issue is of ethical sourcing of cloth. In a bid to push out cheaper garments, manufacturers work at cut throat prices which ultimately pressurises the grass root link in the chain, which is the farmers. There are enough incidents we hear of farmer suicides in our country and maximum from the cotton belt. This is all because of the trickle effect of competition in the fashion industry.
Another major concern is the state of the sweat shop workers, their low wages and working conditions. This movement also aims at ensuring that everyone is the value chain is paid as per their contribution and not exploited. To create sustainable and healthy livelihoods is also a major goal. Energy usage, efficiency and wastage are also a prime concern. Water pollution, soil pollution all these issues are entwined with the farming of the raw materials.
This Zardosi thread work embroidered clutch from lovetobags is made from pure silk.
This movement today is not just limited to clothes but has also caught on to the ancillary industries of beauty products and bags and shoes as well.
What we can do to help out in such a scenario is that we can be respectful of the creators of our garments who are shedding their blood and sweat to make a living and as well as of nature which is providing us with the raw material for such textiles.