Im a huge lover of Ethical Fashion, as Im sure you all know and with Fashion Revolution Week approaching I was keen to highlight and showcase local designers who are making ethically as well as informing myself and how I could be more supportive to the Fashion Revolution movement. I decided to try and be more conscious with my purchases since last years revolution and at Christmas I vowed to buy from local and Irish retailers. I thought it would be a tough task if I being honest, my budget was tight and I never dreamed of finding everyones perfect presents in my local market, but I did. Everything from organic cotton bibs for my unborn nephew to quality handmade leather wallets for the men in my life. I was really quite proud of the creative bunch that Cork people are, which led me to doing more research and what I found was really amazing. Talented designers making everything from Man Bags, Evening Dresses, Festival Wear to Chunky Knit Scarfs and out of this world hand crafted jewellery, all right here on my doorstep, literally within 20 miles of my house I found 5 designers making top class products, and moving a little further afield I found tons more. I never realised what a creative and talented island we are! With this new found wisdom I was bursting with excitement and questions, why don’t people know about these designers and their products? Why at every fashion show I attend do I see mass produced collections? Why cant I go to a show and see all these designers under one roof? And boom, there it was, my ahhhh aaaa moment, why not arrange such a event!?! and so Wild Design was born!
I was hugely lucky to have the support of the wonderful crew at frock advisor, the fashion love child of style gurus Sonya Lennon & Brendan Courtney and of course with the competent team at The Blue Haven Kinsale also on board I knew we could pull off an epic Irish Ethical Design Event! My next stop was designers, this was the easy part, I knew exactly the talented folks I needed to contact and my only regret is that I could not have included more, but we do plan to come back bigger and better next year, so if you are reading this and know of any local talented Irish Designers please do send them my way.
I approached Alice Halliday Couture Charlotte and Jane Mamukko Helle Helsner Celtic Fusion Design and Aruskin Leather Academy, all amazing designers producing ethically, and the real beauty of these designers is that they know who makes your clothes! Each of these labels are either making the items themselves or working individually with skilled stem-stresses in non factory environments.
Why is this important you ask? On 24 April 2013, 1,134 people were killed and over 2,500 were injured when the Rana Plaza complex collapsed in Dhaka, Bangladesh. A factory mass producing clothing for labels all over the world, a factory that has forever changed the way be think about fashion. 1,134 is too many people to lose from the planet in one factory on one terrible day to not stand up and demand change. That is why its extremely important for the fashion industry to make positive change in the way we do business, we as makers, fashion lovers and customers have the power to change the face of fashion, the power to stand up and make a difference. By becoming more conscious in our purchasing decisions we can help shape the industry and the future of fashion.
Wear we Wander and all of the designers that took part in Wild Design are shaping the way fashion should be made. These businesses are placing their values on people, the environment, creativity and profit in equal measure.
Will you be joining us in a Fashion Revolution? It starts with just one question