When you say ‘eco fashion’, one of the first names that come to mind is fashion designer Stella McCartney. Her values of being environmentally aware transcend fashion, making her an authentic force in the industry.
Stella is a lifelong vegetarian and follows an anti-cruelty lifestyle that has seeped into her clothing design, garnering a huge following as well as love from celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Nicole Kidman. Stella’s fashion brand was the first luxury name to be anti-leather and anti-fur. One of the great things about Stella McCartney is that she is an eco-pioneer who broke the myth that environmentally-friendly fashion was boring.
More than Eco Clothing
After a stint as Chloé’s creative director (taking over from Karl Lagerfeld), Stella launched her own fashion label in 2001 as part of the Gucci Group. Stella McCartney’s company is always seeking out new methods to be sustainable, but not just when it comes to creating fashion. The brand is careful about where their collections are produced as well as when they open new stores, to ensure minimal impact on the environment. Stella’s stores and offices in the UK are powered by wind energy. Overseas, renewable energy is used in stores.
Fashion with a Conscience
‘We try to make earth-friendly decisions whenever we can, as it’s part of our brand DNA,’ Stella McCartney said in an interview with U.S. Marie Claire.
Stella’s fashion collections consist of as much organic cotton as possible. Her eco-friendly products include sustainable eyewear that is constructed from 50 per cent natural and renewable resource, as well as a lingerie line that uses recycled metal for hardware as well as organic cotton for its gussets. On her website, Stella says, ‘I design clothes that are meant to last. I believe in creating pieces that aren’t going to get burned, that aren’t going to landfills, that aren’t going to damage the environment. For every piece in every collection I am always asking what have we done to make this garment more sustainable and what else can we do. It is a constant effort to improve. Our philosophy is that it is better to do something than nothing.’
Changing Luxury Fashion
Stella McCartney has been involved in many green projects, such as the ‘Clean by Design’ Programme that concentrates on improving process efficiency so as to lower waste and emissions. In 2005, Stella was recognised by Organic Style magazine for her ecological approach to fashion.
‘I think the moment that I’m very proud of is building a business without using animals,’ Stella told the UK’s Daily Mail. ‘And, hopefully, changing people’s perception of how you can do luxury fashion.’