Last week marked the one year anniversary of Rana Plaza factory collapse. To commemorate the anniversary and to raise awareness of the true cost of fashion, Fashion Revolution Day was launched.As part of the first ever Fashion Revolution Day which took place on Thursday 24th April 2014, consumers were encouraged to wear their clothes inside out and use the hashtag #InsideOut across social media. Organisers also urged consumers to ask the brands where there items of clothing were made. Some brands responded with accurate answers, but for other larger retailers it wasn’t as easy for them to give a straight answer – a clear illustration of how complicated the supply chain can be. In addition to the online activism there were also protests and a number of special events were organised, including one at Designer Jumble, Westfield Stratford. The pop up shop, which is the creation of former Vogue.com editor Abigail Chisman, featured a range of ethical fashion activities.
Making the fashion industry more transparent, improving the rights and working conditions of textile workers and moving towards a more sustainable future can only be a good thing. Brands hold the power to make the changes that are needed to make fashion guilt-free, but as consumers we definitely have a responsibility to challenge them. It was 20 years ago when the first Fairtrade items were introduced to the UK, today we don’t need to go out of our way to find or afford Fairtrade produce. So why can’t we see the same change in fashion?
I wrote a piece on ethics in the fashion industry as part of the one year anniversary of the Rana Plaza factory collapse on the Guardian’s Comment is Free site. You can read it here.
If you want to find out more about Fashion Revolution and how you can challenge the fashion industry visit fashionrevolution.org.
Did you take part in Fashion Revolution Day? Did you make it down the Designer Jumble? What are your tips for fashion lovers in search of a more ethical, but affordable, wardrobe?