The world's trusted guide to sustainable and ethical fashion

The world's trusted guide to sustainable and ethical fashion

Weekend Reading: The D.C. Exhibits You Need to See

Hi readers,

It’s been an exciting couple of weeks! First, I appeared in the New York Times to give my expert opinion on sustainable gift-giving. The author gave me just a couple hours to come up with recommendations for brands I like for gifting. Like choosing a favorite child, but I did my best! My good friend Lauren also sent out her own sustainable shopping guide, and I even discovered some new amazing brands in there. Definitely worth a look!

Teen Vogue asked for my thoughts on faux versus real fur. I wrote something for the launch of Brightly about what sustainable fashion really means, and something for Arcadia Power on tricks to buy less stuff. And I told Business Insider what I learned about working and traveling.

I also visited two exhibits in D.C., both affiliated with George Washington University. One is an exhibit called Fast Fashion/Slow Art at the Corcoran School of the Arts and Design, which “explores issues of waste and consumerism in the garment industry through the work of several contemporary artists including Senga Nengudi, Martha Rosler, and Hito Steyerl, among many others.” It’s essentially the conceptual visual art world’s take on fashion. My favorite piece was a video about shibari, the erotic Japanese art of tying women in ropes and photographing them. It explores the tension between respecting women’s agency to choose how they want to make money, and the exploitation that follows when they really can only make money through either sex work or the garment industry. Another video followed the fascinating dance of a worker in a U.S. high-end brocade factory.  It also has a 15-hour video of a 15-hour workday in a Chinese factory on deadline making children’s pants. The exhibit will be on view  in D.C. through December 15 before traveling to the Bowdoin College Museum of Art from January 30 through August 2, 2020. So get there soon! I also visited the Textile Museum, and was blown away by the depth of what I learned about traditional weaving from all over the world. It’s a must-visit if you’re interested in artisan fashion. Bring your kid for the dress-up corner, where they have wee versions of fashion from all over the world. So cute!

Sustainable Fashion News

A two-part series on how fashion is negatively affecting the world’s biodiversity, and what fashion is doing to fix it.  | Vogue Business

Conde Nast, Vogue’s publisher, is vowing to get rid of plastic packaging for its magazines and align with the Paris Climate Agreement. | Edie 

And fashion editors are pleading with PR firms to stop sending them stuff. | WWD

Your returns are going to the landfill. | BBC

Is fashion as a service the future? | Vogue Business

Because maybe we should be owning our clothes, since renting just makes us value our stuff even less. | Business of Fashion 

How quickly do different fashion textiles biodegrade? | Vogue Business

A Swiss investigative group tried to find out how much garment workers were paid to make one of Zara’s sustainable sweatshirts. The results are not a good look. | Quartz

Paris is becoming a sustainable fashion hub. | NY Times

Hasan Minhaj goes in hard on fast fashion, and 1.3 million people have watched it. | Patriot Act / YouTube

adidas successfully recycled its first generation of recyclable sneakers. What did they learn? | Quartz

adidas is also the closest to paying a living wage, but by and large, the industry has a long, long way to go. | Sourcing Journal

Luxury sweatshops in Italy. | Reuters

There are so many empty storefronts in New York City, and pop-up shops are here to fill the gap. Is that a good thing? | The Atlantic

It always makes me chuckle when another sustainable online store opens like, “We’re the first to only offer sustainable fashion!” Um, did you not look on Google first? | euronews

Marie Kondo is now selling stuff. What? | The Guardian

A new report is out breaking down which brands are improving their viscose supply chain, and which ones are not. | Changing Markets Foundation

A list of startups that are focused on innovative materials. | Crunchbase

Clean Beauty News

A California congresswoman wants to legally define the term “natural” in cosmetics. | The Fashion Law Blog

No surprise that nail salons are toxic. But also, many supposedly “three-free” polishes are anything but. | Undark

Sustainable Travel News

What if all that flying is good for the planet? | NY Times

Plastic Watch

We’re estimated to swallow a credit card’s worth of a plastic a week. | CNN

Influencer Issues

“I couldn’t see a way to fix influencing — the male-coded and female-coded areas of influence, the pay gap between men and women, the pay gap between white women and women of color, the wider power divided along gender and racial lines — without correcting the systemic issues that are affecting everything right now.” | Longreads

“I understand people who feel that activism has to be at the point of crisis. But, to me, none of the activism will get very far unless the source is dealt with: unless the tech companies are broken up, unless their algorithmic behaviour is revealed so that people understand what they are interacting with. All of that can’t really be dealt with if the young activists are using, as the means of their activism, a tainted system.” – Zadie Smith | The Star

We’re too far gone to fix Instagram now. | Vox

Forbes is just clickbait now. Stop citing them as a good source. | Heated

Brands Doing Things

Maggie Hewitt, founder of Maggie Marilyn launched a more affordable direct-to-consumer line called ‘Somewhere.’ It’s a seasonless collection of wardrobe staples and classics with sustainability and transparency at its heart. All garments are traceable through each tier of the supply chain from farm to finished garment, with all garments manufactured in New Zealand.

Last Post

Where to Get the Most Beautiful, Ethical, and Eco-Friendly Decor for Your Home

Next Post

A Sustainable Fashion Lover's Guide to Jaipur, India