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Sustainable Fashion: From Silent Protest to Loud Change

Udržitelná móda: Od tichého protestu k hlasité změně

Today, sustainable fashion is a term that almost everyone knows. But do you know when this term originated and which historical movements influenced it? In this article, we look at the key moments and personalities that shaped sustainable fashion from its inception to the present day.

The beginnings of a revolution in sustainable fashion

A key moment for the emergence of sustainable fashion was Rachel Carson's book "Silent Spring", published in 1962. The book drew attention to the use of pesticides in cotton cultivation and their devastating effect on the environment. At the same time, she pointed out the problems associated with the finalization of the garments, such as dyeing. Through her book, Carson spread awareness of the environmental and social impacts of fashion and laid the groundwork for the concept of sustainable fashion .

Pioneers of sustainable fashion

Among the pioneers of sustainable fashion is Katherine Hamnett, a British activist and designer who was the first to use organic cotton (grown in Turkey and the US in the 1980s) and distressed denim. Another prominent figure is Stella McCartney, a pioneer of vegan alternatives in fashion. Other important personalities include Yvon Chouinard, founder of the Patagonia brand, or Livia Firth, founder of the Eco-Age platform.

Key moments in the development of sustainable fashion

  • 18th century - handwork, clothing as valuable
  • 1938 - DuPont introduces nylon material
  • 1940 - Designers use synthetic materials for creation for the first time
  • 1962 - Rachel Carson publishes the book "Silent Spring"
  • 60s and 70s - Hippies movement and preference for natural materials
  • 1970 - EPA addresses problem of toxic textile dyes
  • 1980 - Growing of the first organic cotton
  • 80s - Punk movement and the development of upcycling and DIY
  • 1991 - Creation of the People Tree brand
  • 2007 - Kate Fletcher uses the term Slow Fashion for the first time
  • 2011 - Greenpeace and the Detox My Catwalk campaign
  • 2013 - The tragic collapse of the Rana Plaza factory in Bangladesh
  • 2015 - The UN publishes 17 Sustainable Development Goals

Sustainable fashion in the 21st century

Nowadays, sustainable fashion is a mainstream concept and more and more customers prefer sustainable fashion to fast fashion. New trends such as circular or regenerative fashion are emerging and materials such as algae dyes or mushroom skin are being used thanks to innovation. Digital tools like blockchain and NFTs can improve supply chain transparency.

The future of sustainable fashion

As consumers, we have the power to shape the future of fashion with our everyday choices. If we choose sustainability, prioritize quality over quantity and support responsible brands, we can create a fashion industry that cares for people and the planet. The sustainable fashion revolution is just beginning and together we can achieve a system built on creativity, collaboration and kindness.


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