Potter star weaves eco fashion magic

Emma Watson shot to stardom as a nine-year-old when she played Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter films; she was worth £10 million before she turned 18. More recently, though, she has become the face of British designer brand Burberry. But when not shooting Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in Hertfordshire, and studying at Brown University, in Providence, Rhode Island, she has been acting out a very different role.

Watson has become the first poster girl for eco-chic and has designed a new range for People Tree, the pioneering Fair Trade and sustainable British fashion brand founded by green campaigner Safia Minney in 1991.

The collection, for men and women, has quirky touches such as a ´´School of Fair Trade´´ badge on a brushed fleece blazer, a ´´daisy-chain necklace´´ motif, which Watson painted and then had printed on a T-shirt, and a hand-drawn Union Jack for tops and bags. Prices range from £12 for a scarf to £115 for a cricket cardigan.

Watson has been a passionate advocate of all things organic since taking human geography as a high school subject and learning about Fair Trade while doing work experience with a friend of her mother´s who lectured at the Oxford Business School.

´´There´s much more awareness among my generation. The planet is at risk and I wanted to do so something,´´ says Watson. ´´Then, I met Safia about 18 months ago, and we started talking about me doing a collection for People Tree. The timing was right.´´

Her decision grew out of a real frustration. ´´It´s hard to know what is good and what is bad on the high street and equally hard to find fashionable or youthful ethical clothing. I don´t want to wear something on my body that hurts the environment or the people in it. I wanted to put together a collection I could be proud of in terms of both ethics and design.´´

Watson worked on the collection in the evenings, after a day´s shooting, and whenever she had a weekend off from filming. ´´I became completely engrossed. I tried on the clothes, I worked on the catalogue and my friends and I were models. We all worked for free.´´

Too young to regard Kate Moss as a role model, Watson cleaves more instinctively to style icons such as Alexa Chung, because ´´there´s nothing fake about her´´, and actress Natalie Portman because ´´she started young like me, and she´s handled her career with grace and dignity´´.

She knows she never need work another day in her life, but says she would consider doing a second collection for People Tree: ´´If people like it and it sells, I´m committed.´´

She´s equally passionate about her education, studying art, painting and drawing, history, English and poetry at university, and starting lessons in contemporary ballet in the summer.

´´I´m going to be there for four years but I´m not planning to disappear. I´m auditioning for a play, Chekhov´s Three Sisters, and I´m still reading scripts,´´ she says.

´´Where I´ll be in 10 years´ time, I really have no idea. I am on the brink of making some big decisions.´´ 

People Tree is available in SA from Scarecrow Organics.

Source: The Telegraph

The liveeco team

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