Working out of a single studio in south London, this brand is entirely produced within a 10-15 mile radius. Such localised production allows Phoebe to target 'bigger picture’ issues surrounding supply chains and carbon footprint - something we really don't see too often. Her simple, yet classic silhouettes are a favourite of mine and prove that there are sustainable solutions to the climate crisis, whilst creating some utterly romantic and dream-worthy clothing. Phoebe's practices also range from innovative pattern-cutting to simple focuses like moving away from plastic and shifting to paper. This message of 'using what we already have' is translated in its most visceral sense in the brand's ‘Nothing New’ collection, with this white shirt look being a stand-out.
Priya Ahluwahlia is a designer that shows us time and time again that sustainable fashion can be incredibly creative. The brand's staple swirling patterns and curves create a real sense of ‘70s freedom: a testament that one designer's waste is another's piece of art. Graduating with an MA in Menswear from Westminster in 2018, Priya leaves no rock unturned when sourcing materials. Working with social enterprises such as Scoop, Priya breathes new life into discarded denims and deadstock alongside mixes of organic and recycled cottons, creating garments that are truly bold, bright and powerful whilst still feeling conscious in their design approach.
Joshua James Small
Another fabulous edition to the eco-crowd is Joshua James Small. Joshua is a big player in helping to transform transparency within the design process, and his recent graduate collection from the University of Creative Arts did just that. His work, shown at The Positive Fashion Exhibition under The British Fashion Council at LFW February 2020, is created from a combination of ethically produced fabrics and deadstock materials sourced from companies such as Sophie Hallette and Swarovski. The young designer then lists the components of each of his garments online, raising questions for the wider industry on brand responsibility. Though Joshua currently focuses on womenswear, his keen eye for tailoring is stand out and I’d be excited to see it translate into some menswear or genderless pieces.
Danish activist, model, and designer Peter does it all. Approaching design and awareness from a totally different perspective, his brand Dura Solutions turns fast fashion on its head, taking orders first and then producing garments accordingly. Dura’s first project, a sustainable T-shirt line titled ‘No Hope for Our Kids’ is designed by Lulu Kennedy’s 5-year-old daughter Rainbow: a wake-up call on behalf of generations yet to come. Not only are the T-shirts 100% recycled (and zero-waste), but Dura re-invest revenue into earth-loving organisations that work on the ground. Finally, a statement tee that makes a real statement.
STORY mfg. have another authentic, sustainable approach to the creative process. Their core message is simple: to help and benefit the earth through design. This husband and wife team also pride themselves on 100% vegan and cruelty free products. The strong aesthetic has always been a stand-out for me, and their work with textile and colour always feels so rich – emanating the passion and care that is clearly poured into the brand and their pieces. Nearly everything is made from organic biodegradable materials that are then transformed into fertiliser. With their beautiful designs and cool fits, do you need another reason to buy green?
Amongst the impressive and ever-growing range of sustainable designers, Sophie Hird, Christopher Raeburn and Stella McCartney are also top of my watch list. If you’re looking to expand your wardrobe whilst gaining a better understanding of how we, as consumers, can make a difference, these wonderful brands may be a good place to start.