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Fashion Week Report by STYLESPRUCE
London Fashion Week Festival back for its second year. For those of us who can’t get an invite to one of the most exclusive events in the fashion calendar, there’s always London Fashion Week Festival, which is held at 180, The Strand and is a collection of see-now, buy-now catwalk shows, industry talks, retail space and consumer experiences.
This year, there’s a huge focus on sustainability and Amy Powney of Mother of Pearl partnered with the BFC to discuss the new Positive Fashion initiative, which is essentially a platform designed to celebrate industry best practice and encourage future business decisions to create positive change.
Positive Fashion Initiative continues
Positive Fashion is led by 3 strategic pillars –
SUSTAINABILITY – Ethics – Focuses on social, environmental and business governance to drive a more sustainable fashion future. Positive Fashion champions the long term sustainability of the fashion sector which contributes £32.3 Billion to the UK economy in GDP and supports 890,000 jobs. Through the power of collective influence, our Positive Fashion committee of global brands, designer businesses and industry stakeholders gather thought leadership and drive change through best practice.
EQUALITY & DIVERSITY – People – Represents the people, from the product makers to the staff, students and models who pioneer our brands. The BFC takes the lead in setting the standards for an industry that strives to represent equality and diversity on the global stage. Championing the importance of every person in the sector as a vital and valuable part of our industry entitled to be treated with respect and dignity.
CRAFTSMANSHIP & COMMUNITY – Community – Supports the community of talent, skills and craftsmanship that make up our unique industry. Our initiatives are designed to develop connections and understanding between designers and manufacturers taking a holistic approach to the long term viability of the sector. We celebrate the wealth of talent and capability that is unique to British designer businesses.
Queen Elizabeth Award for British Design goes to Bethany Williams
The Duchess of Cornwall attended fashion week to present this unique award to a designer whose focus on sustainability has been making waves in the industry. Bethany Williams has been a champion for the social and environmental causes of fashion and has partnered with several charities supporting social change across women’s empowerment. Some of the causes include; homelessness, educational programmes and rehabilitation of offenders back into society.
This unique Award, initiated last year in recognition of the role the fashion industry plays in society and diplomacy, will be awarded annually to an emerging British fashion designer who shows exceptional talent and originality, whilst demonstrating value to the community and/or strong sustainable policies. The inaugural award was presented to Richard Quinn by The Queen at London Fashion Week in February 2018.
South African designer wins the International Fashion Showcase
The International Fashion Showcase is a design competition that sees 16 selected designers from across the globe showcase a series of compelling instillations to represent their respective country. The 16 countries represented this year were: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, Columbia, India, Georgia, Italy, Kenya, Lebanon, Lithuania, Netherland, Rwanda, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Uruguay and Vietnam. The exhibition is free to the public and gives the public and industry professionals the chance to discover emerging fashion from all over the world and to celebrate its global relevance.
The themes of these amazingly immersive environments were politics, sustainability, identity and heritage. Comprised of a mix of womenswear and menswear, their purpose it to explore key issues that are universally shaping the fashion landscape, while presenting new ideas and solutions. This year, Thebe Magugu from South Africa won, whose womenswear designs demonstrate the profound changes happening in South African society, including how women are presented in it.
To check him out, visit www.thebemagugu.com
Karl Lagerfeld dies…sparks debate
Karl Lagerfeld, one of the most influential and recognizable fashion designers died on 19th February. He’s most well known as being the creative director of Chanel and was known for his white hair, black sunglasses and fingerless gloves. His death sparked a Twitter debate between Jamila Jamil, “The Good Place” actress and Cara Delevigne, model and dear friend of Karl.
Jamila, who’s never been shy about speaking her mind, reminded everyone of the “ruthless, fat-phobic, racist and misogynistic” comments the designer had made, instead of mourning and praising him like everyone else. Cara rushed to his defense, saying “he’s a human being like all of us who made mistakes and we all deserve to be forgiven for that”, but her response was promptly rebutted by Jamila quoting “we can’t chalk decades of abusive rhetoric towards minorities as “being human and making mistakes” and pointing out that he had not once changed his behaviour.
It’s never a good time to talk about these things, but what do you think? Legend or oppressor?
Didn’t make it to Fashion Week? Watch most of the shows online www.londonfashionweek.co.uk/live