Unless living in an internet free bubble - you may have noticed that the 18th-24th of April was Fashion Revolution Week? The global, annual movement is held on the anniversary of the tragic Rana Plaza collapse and seeks to raise awareness of our industry’s most pressing issues. Fashion Revolution was born to unite the global fashion industry to make a change, promote ethical sourcing and encourage traceability. As a round up, here are a few of our favorite moments from our TFIA Members:
"Jeanswest is committed to ethical sourcing, transparency and traceability in relation to our supply chain and manufacturing and we are proud of the long-standing relationships we have built with our business partners both here in Australia and overseas. To help shine a light on Fashion Revolution Week, we are proudly showcasing the talented, creative, and hard-working people responsible for making your Jeanswest products. From our long-standing denim business partner, Advancetex who have been manufacturing our jeans for over thirty years in China, to OCC Apparel in St Peters NSW Australia who make our cotton tees and sweaters, to our Jeanswest men’s and women’s designers based in our Melbourne headquarters; they all play a part in making your Jeanswest clothes. Pictured below are just some of the team members who make your Jeanswest products, representing nine different Jeanswest partners."
"Nobody Denim is proud to be a part of Fashion Revolution. An annual initiative, Fashion Revolution brings everyone in the fashion value chain together and helps to raise awareness of the true cost of fashion. It aims to show the world that change is possible, and to celebrate all those involved in creating a more sustainable future. Fashion Revolution allows companies, like Nobody Denim, to share their positive stories, and connect customers with those behind the brand - the makers. Our commitment to manufacturing in Australia allows us to respond immediately to current trends, customer needs and to keep jobs in Australia. We work closely with the Textile, Clothing and Footwear Union of Australia (TCFUA) to maintain an ethical workplace and we are accredited with Ethical Clothing Australia, meaning our customers can be confident that we have taken practical steps to ensure everyone involved in making our designs receive fair wages and are provided with safe working conditions. We believe that fashion can be made in a safe, clean and beautiful way, where creativity, quality, environment and people are valued equally. Show your support for ethical manufacturing."
As part of Fashion Revolution week, UGG Australia offered an exclusive 'Meet-the-maker' tour behind the scenes of their Melbourne factory. "We open our factory doors to show how ‘Ugg boots’ are made by hand and step by step. From farmer to the boot, our team crafts boots made from the finest Australian merino sheepskin all here in Melbourne... a unique perspective into the manufacturing and production process of making products by hand and by using materials made within Australia. Highlighting how the iconic ‘Ugg boot’ is a truly unique product that we can all be proud of as Australians. Not some, but ALL of our Ugg Australia® products are 100% Australian made, at our factory here in Brunswick, Melbourne, that’s our guarantee. Our boots are made from high-grade Genuine Australian double-face merino, sourced sustainably from local farms from the southern states of Australia. Australia currently has the highest Environmental Protection standards, state government test our chemical levels weekly to make sure we adhere to use and concentration guidelines. We only use veg-tan base and tanning chemicals that are safe for human use, our environment and waterways, we process sheepskin ecologically at our own Roman Tannery, right here in Melbourne, Australia."
RMIT's Master of Fashion Entrepreneurship program hosted a screening of 'The True Cost' and an engaging panel discussion with local industry members on 'New Industry Models & Industry Change'. Fabia Pryor, Lecturer in Sustainability at RMIT hosted the panel discussion which included; Sigrid McCarthy from Ethical Clothing Australia & INTENT Journal, Kirri-Mae Sampson from the Textile & Fashion Hub, Green Collect, Bhalo & Mae Smyth, Celestine Wilson from Ugg Australia, and Melbourne designer Lois Hazel (of Lois Hazel).
The discussion highlighted some best practice examples in our industry in terms of sustainable and ethical innovations and a collective nod to the fact that Australian manufacturing is NOT dead. The group also identified that our industry still has a fair way to go when it comes to ethical and sustainable practice, and that this needs to be driven by the industry, consumers and government as a whole.
The goal to takeaway from the discussion? Let's make ethical and sustainable practice in the fashion industry the norm, not just a niche marketing strategy.
A big thank you to Fashion Revolution for raising awareness of the big issues in our industry and for uniting individuals and organisations globally toward the cause. Want to learn more? Head to the Fashion Revolution page HERE
Thanks for Reading!