It's Earth Day today, and retailers online and off are seizing the marketing opportunity just as they would for any other holiday. This year it's easier than ever, as the "green" trend is still going strong. However, there are some brands and designers that don't wait for a gorgeous spring day to celebrate our beautiful planet. Here's a few names you should know that work year-round at creating fashion that's sustainable and Earth friendly.
One of the online shops riding the Green wave today is Gilt Groupe - a member's only perpetual sample sale, of sorts. Among the offerings for the day (some of which are truly green, while others merely have a green spin) is a selection of items from Doucette Duvall. The label is comprised of Manhattan-based designers Stephanie Doucette and Annebet Duvall. The brand's main claim to eco-friendliness is their use of repurposed fabric. The dress below, left is made from what Gilt calls "rescued silk," while the tank on the right is made from polyester - rescued, of course.
From the label's website:
Doucette Duvall practices environmental and social responsibility by manufacturing the entire collection in New York City's historic garment district, using pre-existing fabric and trim, shunning extraneous garment bags and hang tags, and shipping in recycled boxes only. Look for the "little green dress" in each collection as a reminder of their commitment to Madame Earth. A portion of the proceeds from the lgd are donated to the non-profit group, Build it Green, who share a similar reuse ideal.
German designer Erika Hendrix didn't start out wanting to be a designer. Rather she was interested in makeup and photography. However, her green lifestyle soon led to an inherently eco-friendly fashion line when she started making clothes by hand. From an interview with TheFashionCult.com:
TFC: How does your brand reflect your personal lifestyle or values?
EH: I only eat organic or fair trade food. I think it's important to know where the stuff you are buying/eating is coming from. I couldn’t buy something that is so cheap because I know how much work it is to make something, so how can it be so cheap?
TFC: All the products we see on your Website are handmade. What inspired you to go that route?
EH: I have taught everything I know to myself. I started making one-of-a-kind shirts and shorts in 2005 and last Fall/Winter I brought out my first collection. I also love making everything myself, [but] I think I will need some help with sewing soon, it's just too much to do it all alone. I will definitely work with a sweatshop-free manufacturer, that’s very important to me.
As with all things fashion, when there's a big trend you'll sooner find it in womenswear than menswear. There are, however, a few labels out there doing the green thing for the fellas. Among them is Cash Crop. The brand focuses on creating staple pieces from organic cotton and recycled fabrics. The founder has a background in skate and activewear, which comes through in the many t-shirts the line produces. Not to be pigeon-holed, however, Cash Crop also turns out sophisticated dress shirts, sweaters, and outerwear.
From the label's website:
We are not trying to reinvent the wheel but get it turning in a smoother, less destructive way with a new approach to daily living. We believe it is important to look good and feel good, But we believe it is curtail to reuse as much mass produced textiles as possible. RE-USE CASH - REDUCE CROP - RECYCLE CLOTHING
Thanks to our awesome Facebook fans for the following green fashion tips:
AUM Couture: "Yoga Lifestyle with Style"
Woodies by eco2wear: "Made from Wood, Really"
by Mary Egbula