Ethical Clothing Comes of Age
You might think you’re just buying an incredibly cute top, but you could accidentally be doing a world of good.
One of the highlights of the spring shows in Paris was the debut of Maiyet. The clothes, featuring elegant silhouettes in a moody monochrome palette, could easily have passed for Givenchy or any other luxury label. But these offered something pleasantly shocking: They’re all sourced from artisans in countries experiencing political and economic unrest. Eco- and ethically conscious clothing isn’t news—but incredibly chic clothes flying this standard? This is. As the socially minded Project Runway alum Gretchen Jones puts it: “It doesn’t matter if it’s made out of organic hemp/soy/cotton/silk if no one wants to wear it.” The most evolved labels go beyond organic fibers into the realm of leave-no-trace manufacturing and union-quality working conditions, and their offerings—including knits from Chinti and Parker, sundresses from People Tree, jeans from Raleigh and fancy gowns from H&M—are so chic, they’ll dazzle even the most style-conscious.
From left to right:
O by Kimberly Ovitz
This minimalist diffusion line debuted with a collection made entirely of Tencel jersey, a fabric created from wood-pulp cellulose. Cri de Coeur’s modern Mary Janes feature 100 percent nontoxic materials.
H&M Conscious Collection
Kristin Davis wore this adorable dress on the red carpet; only later did we learn of H&M’s commitment to global workplace standards, water conservation and sustainable fabrics.
An odd-bedfellows lineup—a human-rights lawyer, an exec from Gap’s RED campaign, fashion heavyweights like Lori Goldstein—oversees this line, responsible for such beauties as this Gatsby-esque dress.
Rebecca Taylor’s skirt, made from recycled plastic bottles, displays her trademark flirtiness once again. Carrie Parry’s pretty button-down
is made from leftover cotton fibers.
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