• Maddie

Will circular fashion brings new creative designers to head again luxury fashion Houses?

Sustainability has turned into a portmanteau, or according to the French translation, a big "suitcase-word" where each one could place its own interpretation. Looking like the original trunks Louis Vuitton once artisanally made and are now pilled to decorate the LVMH Louis Vuitton head office...

Being sustainable has lead fast-fashion brands to greenwash their reputation through the help of celebrities and big influencers as highlited by Kate Auguste. Some sustainable designers are also very happy to use them for making growing their brand, which result pretty curious... To think about the influencer strategy, I invite you to read my previous article.

Sustainability has also its number of nostalgic peoples and it made me kind of curious on their point of view.

"Until a few years ago, having a Chanel bag or a tailleur was a privilege of few. Very few. (...) Today everything has changed. Chanel bags run into any Instagrammers’ closets" Marinella Rauso

Dana Thomas has highlighted in two books on luxury and High Fashion designers Alexander McQueen and John Galliano, how luxury has taken the schedule of fast fashion production, asking for creative artist-designers to head old Maison de Couture and around 32 collections per years, instead of two... In her books, she explained the process of turning a fashion designer into a no-longer creative person, being instead a good brand manager - who has anyway studied it in fashion school - and a brand-leader that no longer leave space for creativity. In other words, fashion-designer has become a Job.

Alexander McQueen early creative shows

In a recent article posted by Vogue Business on the recent pop-up of Vestiaire Collective at Selfridges London, I was fearing while reading on how sustainability can not stop this conglomerate business model to grow, and participate in a still overproduction model... but then came up this sentence...

"Bittner says this increases the likelihood that customers will buy more adventuresome pieces, rather than buying “safe” items."

It suddenly brought me to Dana Thomas' nostalgia. Although at that time, unlike now, she wasn't talking on sustainability but on pure creativity and artistic creation.

Having read that sentence made me thought that maybe circular fashion could actually help customers to take a different decision towards fashion and respect it as an art?

What do you do when you are a spectator of Art, you tent to take your time to understand it, to feel the emotion, to receive its political message. And this is what sustainability is supposed to embrace.

Here is my statement inspired by Dana Thomas readings:

1. Designer having time to create and not turned to decision-makers.

2. Fashion shows must last more than 15 or 20 minutes. Having time to watch and take notes on creations. To write about them as a journalist, a fashion critic or a fashion student.

3. Welcoming people at fashion shows who have a true interest in fashion and not just a compulsive buyer.

I believe that will not happen..., but think about this scenario...

Buyers who will no longer buy fashion without admiring the work made, making the effort to understand it, and will no longer be excluded from fashion impact on the planet. Let me explain why. The production of those items will involve a higher price, so some exclusivity and then better care plus less necessity of compulsive buying as they will feel their privilege. Then circular fashion will make all its sense into a customer who can not afford luxury pieces. No longer buying fast fashion and wait for the item to be on second-hand platforms or shops. Fast fashion won't be able to create a copy of an amazing piece of art as it will cost them too much money on production. It will then leave the possibility of artistic fashion to work according its own agenda and not a fast-fashion one. Fast fashion will then no longer lead our mentalities on a two-months turn over's trends. That will also impact the well-being of workers in High Fashion industry and their choice of places for production as well as a better repartition of salary for workers.

Time is a fact that we can no longer ignore as it is part of our past, present and future. As we commonly say "time will tell us" and I think it is already doing it. We just have to listen to it.

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