Designing to Make a Difference!

Each and every designer in his/her tenure reaches a stage where they have to contemplate how to change the face of fashion with their designs. Every year they are expected to create something new, something awe-inspiring, which will take their career and the fashion industry to new heights. But at what cost? At the cost of a polluted environment for us to live in? At the cost of an ecosystem that is highly unbalanced for us or any other living organism to live in? I think not.!

Pesticides used by farmers to protect textiles while they grow, wastage of water during dying the textile, bleach used on those textiles to achieve a certain finish, exploitation of animals etc, are the factors harming the ecosystem the most! No doubt they look good, but is it the best for the world we live in? Absolutely not.! There is a dire need to start thinking about our surroundings and the kind of impact we are making on it.

Designers have been at it for a very long time. To be honest there are no real “new” designs that we get to see. Sure the fabrics are different, some of them are longer than they should be and some are smaller than they should be. In any case a lot of these “new” designs end up in the gutter as soon as the showcase is over, creating uncalled for wastage of both textile and design.

Designers know firsthand the amount of pollution caused by the textile industry in order to give a finished piece of fabric, yet nobody ever stops to reconsider how it impacts the world we live in. We need to become smart and be completely aware of our situation, which is just taking a turn for the worse. Well thought of and innovative ideas are required to take the fashion fraternity by storm and change the way we design things, here are a few of them:

  • Designing with rags. (Leftovers from previously designed clothes)
  • Eco-friendly textiles.
  • Sustainable fibers – organic cotton and bamboo.
  • Recycled synthetics.
  • Smart Tailoring (DPOL) – Created by Indian designer – Siddhartha Upadhyaya

These are only a handful of new ways designers can look into. Instead of trying to create an all new design or trend, we should now try and look at ways in which we can improve on an already amazing collection of clothes and designs we already have. Waste fabrics left over during designing the next big thing, can be used to create a completely different design – probably something no one has ever seen. Making an effort and ensuring that we do not harm the environment is the only way forward.

The collaboration between an organization devoted to saving the ocean – Parley and a leading footwear brand – Adidas, have given us the ocean plastic waste shoe.. All we need now are more people/firms to design for the future, to concentrate more on the process of making their product and how it affects everything around us. Got more ideas of designing safely for the future? Do let us know!

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