Some facts on the cost of fashion:
Every year the fashion industry uses 93 billion cubic meters of water enough to meet the consumption needs of 5 million people.
114 billion items of clothing is produced every year.
Fashion production makes up 10% of humanity’s carbon emissions, dries up water sources, and pollutes rivers and streams.
The wheel of fashion has just turned faster and faster. Extra “drops”, designers having to create new collections every other month, quantity before quality has been the normative until Corona.
So what have we been doing since we’ve jumped off the wheel of consumption? For the first time in modern society we’ve been given an opportunity to slow down, taking care of ourselves, families, loved ones and the things we already have.
The humane and economic tragedy has opened up for revolutionary behavioral changes. With less raw materials being produced in the fashion industry I see a future where we’re moving away from the fast and into the slow. Where designers will have time to get inspired, dream and evoke their passion. Less collections, timeless collections, local production and garments that once again have value with a long lifespan. We’re not going to handle the senselessness of fast fashion. We want to see love and authentic brands. True creation. The slow and sustainable movement is already accessible to a larger consumer market, like the inspirational Barcelona based fashion brand Iaos which uses 100% recycled thread to create their made to last timeless sweaters in local family owned factories.
I see a future where the retail landscape is going to change. The opening up of carefully decorated attractive stores with a personal and intimate brand experience. Inviting the consumer to be part of a community of something more than mere consumption. Fewer items but carefully curated in harmonious spaces. Ateliers, workshops and a focus on the hand made, the organic, the imperfect. Activist and designer Kavita Parmar ‘s IOU project and brand was born from the need to empower both the artisan and consumer. Creating an emotional bond from garment to the end use consumer. The whole supply chain is transparent and brings more money directly to the artisans hands. They offer unique, beautifully crafted pieces at the same price range as popular, mass-produced low-quality fashion.
Sustainability, circular, local, intimate, emotional, human, community… these are a few important concepts for the future. With the past months of uncertainty, social distancing and confinement we’ve been on a inner journey, we’ve lived the benefits of taking our time, we’ve been faced with our vulnerability and we’re longing for a reset of society. A borrowing instead of taking mentality. A reset of how we consume, dress, produce and value our limited natural resources.