The most impressive show at this June's Pitti Uomo collections in Florence was a presentation titled "Constellation Africa". Parading down the runway were some of the best menswear looks I've seen in a long time.
Mariemae Stationary and Mariemae Business School founder Jillian Ryan partnered with No. 41, a Rwanda-based social enterprise, to offer business training to the organization. No. 41 employs 21 women from the Noel Orphanage and the surrounding area in the small village of Gisenyi.
You may be wondering why fashion integrity matters--because after all, you don't eat clothing. But the truth is, just as with food with integrity, clothing with integrity effects a huge swath of people and places.
I'm Miriam Ava, founder of ColorsofGratitude.com and ambassador of good taste. I share messages that matter, one Dispatch at a time. My views are utterly my own and intrinsically independent. I love what I share. Hope you enjoy!
The benchmark of mass production is so low that everybody, in Italy and in Africa, has to decrease prices. Nobody can compete and artisans are disappearing. Today, being an artisan is not a good job anymore. At the same time, this means that products do not last and are unsustainable.
Stella marveled at the jewelry these survivors made out of recycled paper, and she was struck by their artistry and ingenuity. She returned home to the Netherlands to finish her studies, but the memory of the women stayed with her.
This post isn't meant to claim moral superiority, to set hard and fast rules about shopping or to shame anyone who uses a capsule wardrobe. It's to admit my own self-centered thinking about my wardrobe and to encourage everyone, including me, to shop more intentionally.
From conversations I have had with people all around the world, what I have come to realize is that we all want the same things: something to believe in, health, prosperity, to belong, and opportunity.
Customers want to feel that they are making a positive difference in the world. Giving a gift that "gives" even more than the actual item makes both the gift's giver and receiver feel a part of something greater.
If you're going to shop on Friday, why not choose quality, craftsmanship and durability over cheap, imported and disposable. It's clear by now that our relationship to fashion has some dangerous implications, but we can all start creating a solution in the way that we shop this holiday season.
The industry giants have dedicated millions of dollars to massive PR campaigns, going so far as to launch "conscious collections" and donate proceeds to worthy causes. Yet despite these efforts, the truth remains -- fashion is one of the dirtiest industries in the world.