Posted on Leave a comment

How the Fashion Industry Can Become More Eco-Friendly

It’s no secret that fashion hasn’t always been the most eco-friendly industry. In fact, the fashion industry accounts for 2% of global Gross Domestic Product, or GDP, and is also now considered one of the largest polluters in the world.

While fast fashion makes shopping for clothes more affordable, it comes at a price. The mass production of cheap clothing compels more people to throw garments away instead of recycling them, which is why fast fashion is often called “landfill fashion.” In poorly sealed landfills, harmful dyes can leach from textiles into groundwater and cause excessive environmental damage.

Meanwhile, synthetic fabrics like nylon, acrylic, and polyester are actually made from plastic. When garments made of this material are washed, they shed tiny plastic fibers that are so small they escape wastewater treatment plants into the environment. Because they’re plastic, these microfibers never biodegrade. They endlessly pollute the ocean where they absorb chemical pollutants and are ingested by marine life.

In 2018, 97% of all clothing sold in the United States was fashioned overseas. Unfortunately, almost every single garment shipped here comes on its own plastic hanger, which means billions of plastic hangers are sent to the US every year. If you laid these hangers out end to end, they’d stretch for 8 million miles, far beyond the orbit of the moon. The worst part? About 85% of these hangers aren’t reused or recycled.

How the fashion industry can be more sustainable

To inspire change and push for the future of sustainable fashion, more than 3,080 facilities worldwide were certified to Global Organic Textile Standard, or GOTS, in 2013, and the numbers are growing. One of the key criteria for a textile product to carry the GOTS “organic” label is that it must contain at least 95% certified organic fibers.

Some clothing companies combat the fast fashion industry by using natural dyes and avoiding polyester and other synthetic, plastic-based materials proven to pollute our waterways and the ocean.

Sustainable fashion initiatives for consumers

It may seem like there isn’t a whole lot we can do to change the industry since we aren’t fashion brands, but that’s not true. As a consumer, you actually have more power than you realize. You can:

  1. Change the way you do laundry: Only wash full loads, use cold water more often, avoid dry cleaning and tumble dryers, and use green detergent. You can even invest in products like the Cora Ball that help reduce the amount of microfiber released into your wastewater.
  2. Buy clothes from sustainable brands: The more demand there is for sustainable clothing, the more likely big brands will be to invest in sustainable solutions.
  3. Go thrifting: If buying from sustainable brands isn’t in your budget right now, try shopping at secondhand stores. You can often find fashionable items at a fraction of the price. Don’t forget to recycle or donate your old garments when you no longer use them.
  4. Donate your clothes to charity: There are several ways to prevent your clothes from piling up in the landfill. Try donating them to charity, repairing them, or putting them in textile recycling bins (not your standard curbside bins).
  5. Invest in fewer, higher quality garments: While many fashion brands are using recycled fabrics in an attempt to be more sustainable, these materials are still made from plastic-based fibers and will shed plastic microfibers into wastewater. By investing in clothing made from high-quality natural fibers, like GOTS-certified organic cotton, you can decrease microplastic pollution and protect marine life.
  6. Rent clothes: Clothing rentals are an excellent choice for outfits you know you won’t wear often, like prom dresses, tuxedoes, and maternity clothes

Buy eco-friendly apparel from 4ocean
To support sustainable fashion initiatives, we chose to make 4ocean t-shirts from 100% GOTS-certified organic cotton because it’s a natural fiber that won’t contribute to the devastating impact of microplastic pollution in the ocean.

4ocean is an ocean cleanup company on a mission to help the world end the ocean plastic crisis. We hire captains and crews to recover trash that’s already polluting the ocean and coastlines 7 days a week while empowering people to curb their plastic habit and live more sustainably. Every 4ocean product you purchase comes with our One Pound Promise to pull one pound of trash from the ocean and coastlines.

Join the clean ocean movement alongside millions of ocean lovers just like you. Adopt one or all of the sustainable fashion initiatives outlined above, sign up for our monthly bracelet subscription, shop our organic apparel. Remember: Small acts add up. Together, we can end the ocean plastic crisis.

Posted on Leave a comment

How to Upgrade Your Wardrobe (Slowly but Surely)

Everyone’s style changes over time. Sometimes it changes out of professional necessity, such as a shift from school to the workforce, but often we’ve simply grown out of, or grown tired of, a set of clothes or “look” that we used to love wearing. You may feel that your clothes no longer reflect who you are, or that you want to look more put-together in your everyday life. Upgrading your style can make you feel more alert and ready for the professional challenges the day throws your way; it can also make you feel prettyconfident, and on top of things. Check out the tips below for an almost-effortless style upgrade.

01. Reflect on your wardrobe.

Start by reflecting on your current style. Do your clothes describe who you are now, or do they say something about you that you can’t relate to anymore? Do they reflect new stories or beliefs about yourself? Make two lists of what you need in a wardrobe: one list should include clothing that is necessary for your lifestyle (e.g. slacks for work, fleece leggings for leisure, rain boots for spring, or cotton shorts for summer). The second list should describe your aesthetics—what you want those items to look like. (If you haven’t already defined your personal style,

02. Assess the clothing and outfits that you actually wear.

Think about what you wear the most during a given week. You may even want to take selfies in the bathroom so you have a small gallery to scroll through.

Once you know what you’re wearing regularly, you’re able to ask yourself an essential question: what is one change you could make that would elevate your look right now? We’re looking for the biggest return on investment here: the smallest change that will make the biggest difference

Shoes, for example, often do a lot of work for an ensemble. The same jeans and tee can look casual with sneakers, polished with flats, and downright dressy with heels. Other ways to elevate your look include upgrading from tees to blouses, leggings to pants, or from plain items to patterned ones.

Here we can see the spectrum of looks achieved by just upgrading the shoes in each subsequent photo.

Once you choose what to focus on, remember that you are playing a long game. It can be expensive and impractical to upgrade all of one type of clothing at one time. Instead, consider how many blouses or pairs of shoes you think you will want or need. Buy one item now, and then look at your budget and calculate how you can space out the purchases—perhaps you can buy one each month, or put off your most significant purchase for a time when money will be less tight than usual. Even if you can afford to replace everything at once, hold yourself back. You are trying a new style that you think you want to wear—but you never really know until you try. Make sure that you space your purchases at least a couple of weeks apart so you can wear your new item a few times. You don’t want to end up buying a bunch of clothes that you end up hating!

03. Integrate new items gradually.

You may feel uncomfortable and self-conscious if you try to go from, say, wearing blouses only on occasion to wearing them every day. Once you have one or a few of your new pieces, start by wearing, say, a blouse once a week. When you get used to that, increase it to two times a week, and so on, until you are comfortable wearing blouses five to seven days a week, every time you go to work, or whatever your final goal was.

Here’s some blouse inspiration: these two tee-and-jeans combos are both cute and appropriate for the weekend. But maybe you’re starting a business or going to a casual networking event and want to make your jeans look a little more professional.

View the original article to see the embedded media.

View the original article to see the embedded media.

You could elevate the jeans-and-flats look with a button-up shirt, instead of a basic tee.

View the original article to see the embedded media.

View the original article to see the embedded media.

04. Donate old items.

You’ve successfully integrated your upgraded items into your wardrobe—congratulations! Now you can sift through your closet and donate the old clothes that you have moved on from. Goodwill and Salvation Army take clothing donations, and remember that H&M and Madewell will both take raggedy items that cannot be worn again.

05. Reassess and consider another upgrade.

Maybe that one change is enough, or maybe you’d like to continue elevating and evolving your style. If that’s the case, look for the next item to upgrade, and continue shifting your wardrobe little by little towards the impression you’d like to make.

You may also be past the point of needing to upgrade individual items. In that case, you can also pick one style principle to work on—such as adding accessories, playing with volume, or coordinating your shoes and your purse. Perhaps you are happy with your clothes and the way you mix and match them, but you want to add some fun or an extra pop of color. In this case, adding different types of statement earrings, for instance, could be a quick way to continue to elevate your everyday look.

Posted on Leave a comment

5 Best Current Fashion Trends

Following on the 2020 fashion trends – of online business meetings and WFH, 2021 brings some refreshing changes you’ll love to hear about. If past fashion trends were first gathered from the world’s runways and fashion magazines; nowadays, from social media, youth culture, streetwear styles, and celebrities showcasing what’s cool and fresh.

Unfortunately, fashion trends of 2020 didn’t help much – in the sense of inspiring the general public – so this year is out of the normal path. So far, we’re still seeing a spring/summer season with models wearing masks on the catwalk and an audience watching via Zoom.

But, in contrast to the apocalyptic settings the fashion industry is going through right now, the latest trends show artistry so fabulous that it lifts one’s mood from even the darkest depths of quarantine.

Compared to the neutral looks of the 2020 fashion trends, this year is showcasing fresher and bolder designs, in part driven by a need to come back to life, after the gloomy global lockdown. The hottest fashion trends of SS21 enchant us with: Oversized blazers, sleek face masks, feathers that spark joy, monochrome chic add-ons, encouraging us to go bright and bold.

To some extent, the current styles resemble the 90s fashion trends in the sense of mimicking the silhouettes and patterns of those seasons, with one big difference. Old styles are reinvented in relaxed, oversized, and loud colours, like nothing we’ve seen before, explained by experts as ‘our need to compensate the Covid-19 lockdown boredom.

As fashion changes fast, keeping up with the latest fashion trends will help immensely, be that for a Covid-safe dinner date or just a walk in the park. To top it up, replicating the current fashion trends won’t cost you a dime.

1.Hoodies under blazers

Trend tip:

Match it with high-rise sox and oversized sneakers for a super-casual London look.

As seen at:

Off White, Stussy, Noah NYC, Awake NY, Palace

One of the most popular styles rocking the current fashion trends is the ever-so cosy hoodie, however, worn with a twist. Regardless, wearing a blazer with a hoodie is no longer just another street style but a transcendent, mainstream look.

Wearing your quarantine-staple-piece hoodie under a blazer adds an extra stylistic layer to your overall look. It works wonders with oversized, boxy blazers, but you can also get thinner hoodies to work more tailored blazers, so you can’t mess it up no matter what.

Look for a slim, tapered hoody — preferably a darker, solid hue, without too much embroidery or graphics. Pair it with a dark, solid blazer. Slacks or denim is up to you — either will work depending on the occasion.

2. Women’s oversized bomber jackets

Trend tip:

Match it with high-rise sox and oversized sneakers for a super-casual London look.

As seen at:

Off White, Stussy, Noah NYC, Awake NY, Palace

Bomber jackets should always rest loosely on your hip – unless you’ve opted for a slightly cropped style. The clingy cuffs shouldn’t go past or above your wrists, no matter the fit. The cuffs should be relatively tight, so if it hangs over your hand loosely, try a smaller size.

The hues, in this case, are almost always neutral, somehow empowering the underneath attire for an effortlessly chic aesthetic.

3. Cropped cardigans

Trend tip:

For an extra cute look, mix your cropped cardigans with lounge-ish sweatpants or a midi skirt.

As seen at:

Bethany Williams, Gucci, Faith Connexion, Maison Mihara Yasuhiro, Prada

Nothing defines the contemporary fashion trends quite like a cropped cardigan. A vintage-inspired trend kicked off by high brands like Alessandra Rich and LoveShackFancy, quickly copied by Zara and Forever 21, and other fast fashion brands.

Regardless, if putting together a cute outfit seems like too much to handle right now, a skinny knit with your favourite jeans is the perfect answer. Styles range from basic button-ups to embroidered, embellished, or printed knits, so there’s pretty much something for everyone.

You can wear these shrunken knits with slip skirts and a leather jacket, especially when you need another layer. Of course, jeans and boots are also great accompaniments for a cropped cardigan. But however you style it, it’s safe to say you’ll be super comfortable all day long.


 Casual trench

Trend tip:

If you’re looking for something different, grab a Nanushka faux leather trench and wear it over a floral dress or a ribbed wool turtleneck with matching heels.

As seen at:

Burberry, Nanushka, Valentino, Sportmax, Brunello Cucinelli, Dolce & Gabbana, Magda Butrym, Palmer//Harding

You can’t beat a classic trench coat, the ultimate between-seasons outerwear. Not a fashion season has passed without the trench putting in an appearance, and the most recent shows were no exception.

With a perennially stylish military cut, the super practical trench coat is a fashion staple since the first world war. Also, thanks to the Gabardine fabric, the casual trench is perfect for drizzly days.

The coat of choice for iconic women for decades, the casual trench is brought back to life by Meghan Markle’s recent royal visits. Great with a cashmere roll neck and Prada tractor-tread boots to create that stylish and yet military-inspired outerwear look.

5. Boiler Suits

Trend tip:

An essential item if you want to look like a legendary model, just make sure you add a famous curf and that the bag matches your shoes.

As seen at:

Off White, Stussy, Noah NYC, Awake NY, Palace

This one-and-done hero piece has cropped up everywhere this year, from the runway to your favourite affordable stores. It’s easy, it’s cool, and it takes the stress out of picking pants and a shirt—because we all have enough to think about right now.

Traditionally made from heavy canvas or denim, the one-zip wonder was one of many game-changing inventions to come out of the industrial revolution. With boiler suits, comfort and practicality are both high on the list.

Beloved by celebrities such as Giambattista, Hadid sisters, Rosie Huntington-Whitely, and Irina Shayk, this versatile all-in-one is your swiftest route to utility chic. As seen at: Maison Margiela, Dolce & Gabbana, Etro, MCQ, Stella McCartney

Posted on Leave a comment

10 Sustainable Fashion Startups To Keep an Eye On

The fashion industry is no stranger to the advent of innovation. The very nature of both the business and artistry of fashion lies in its ability to transform with time. So why has the fashion industry lagged so far behind other sectors in keeping up with sustainability? And what is the role of startups in sustainable fashion?

First, it may help to take a look back at how we got here. In the first half of the 19th century, fashion remained a slow and personal process. Local dressmaking businesses were responsible for making clothing for middle-class women, while women from lower-income households continued to make their own clothing. In the ‘60s, though, the industry started to see a shift in the habits of young people, as they began embracing cheaply made clothing to stay in the fashion loop.

Once the 1990s and 2000s rolled around, this wave of “fast fashion” took on a life of its own. People not only started embracing their low-cost clothes, but began showing them off and touting the price. Fashion trends became increasingly short-lived year over year as the cost to produce new and more diminished rapidly.

The resultant increasing demand for new clothing items is leading to an overwhelming expenditure of non-renewable resources used in industrial agriculture and production. The “wear-once and dispose” trends coming out of Zara, H&M, and the like allowed consumers to buy clothes and engage in fashion at larger scales than ever before.

In 2015, The True Cost, a documentary revealing the underbelly of the fashion industry, shocked fashion lovers and environmental activists alike. Suddenly, a new light was being shined on the true effects of the way we were doing fashion. The Rana Plaza Collapse, which killed at least 1,132 garment workers and injured more than 2,500, is often cited as the turning point for the way people see the fashion industry.

The Current State of Fashion

The Global Fashion Agenda CEO’s Report 2020 recognizes that the current model has been a powerful engine for global growth and development, but states there is a compelling business case for those who invest in long-term social and environmental sustainability, beyond short-term financial incentives. While changing established practices is not an easy feat, the authors remain convinced (as do we) that the fashion industry can act as a role model for other industries to embrace sustainability before it is too late. And innovation plays a key role in that.

BOF-McKinsey State of Fashion 2021 Report conducted a survey from fashion executives on the greatest opportunities within the fashion industry. While digital was the major front-runner in opportunity as COVID-19 persists, sustainability followed in second place. The current optimism about digital and sustainability is consistent with the widely held industry view that, despite the disruption of the pandemic, these trends will accelerate and, in turn, lead to the ongoing reset of the fashion industry.

Innovation in Sustainable Fashion: Trends

The Global Fashion Agenda names 8 top priorities for fashion sustainability, which include:

  1. supply chain traceability;
  2. combating climate change;
  3. sustainable material mix;
  4. circular fashion system;
  5. efficient use of water, energy, and chemicals;
  6. respectful and secure work environments;
  7. promotion of better wage systems; and
  8. the “Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The first Plug and Play Sustainable Fashion Initiative event kicked off in January 2021. We invited a number of panelists and startups to come together and discuss the future of sustainable fashion innovation. Of these top eight priorities, we focused on three to begin with, including circular fashion, new textiles and engineered fibers, and dyeing innovation.

10 Startups Reshaping Sustainable Fashion

Circular Fashion

Good on You

Good On You is the world’s most comprehensive brand rating system and online discovery platform for fashion. It connects conscious shoppers to fashion retailers globally. Their trusted, independent ethical brand ratings solve a real problem for the millions of consumers looking to shop better and the retailers looking to reach them.

Since 2015, this sustainable fashion startup has rated over 2,500 brands for their impact and empowered millions of shoppers to buy better. They celebrate the designers and makers who are doing good, and give retailers the tools to connect with the growing conscious consumer market.

Armadioverde is a sustainable fashion startup with a mission to become the most recommended community-based service platform for the exchange of high-street fashion in Europe.

With a growing user base, the highest customer retention rate in the industry, a collection of 200,000 affordable items, new collections published 4 times a day and a talented team in Milan, armadioverde enables its members to exchange items and revamp their style in an affordable, convenient, and sustainable way.

EcoFashion Corp

ECOfashion Corp is a social purpose corporation with the vision to transform the fashion and textile industries through sustainable design and a ‘source to story’ business model.

Global leader of sustainable fashion via 4 verticals: MetaWear (B2B), YES AND (D2C), and Farm to Home & Seed to Style (QVC.) From source to story and farm to finished fashion, EFC was born with environmental and social justice in its DNA. From organic/regenerative agriculture and climate action, to inclusivity and women’s empowerment, EFC is deeply committed to doing well by doing good in the world.


Presize is a size assistant for fashion e-commerce. It helps fashion retailers increase their conversion rates by eliminating size uncertainty and reduce their return rate by recommending the perfectly fitting size.

To receive a size recommendation from Presize, end-users can answer questions about their body and/or record a 7-second video of themselves turning around in front of their smartphone camera and it will give them accurate size recommendations that people buy (+50%) and keep (+50%). This makes Presize the only holistic solution on the market, delivering a result with and without a video.

New Textiles & Engineered Fibers

Dropel is a sustainable fashion startup that targets our favorite fabrics, such as cotton, and makes it possible for those fabrics to perform better for longer. Disrupting performance fabrics, Dropel uses an entirely new natural technology to maintain the things we love about them, the softness and breathability, all while adding advanced performance never before seen without compromising on hand.

By applying their patent-pending technology material science and cotton processing technology they can make clothing “life proof”, including stain proof and spill-proof. Dropel leverages material science and textile engineering to create high-performance natural fabrics that push sustainability in the fashion industry and reduce polyester-based microfibers pollution in our oceans.

Are you a corporation looking to tap into sustainable fashion? At Plug and Play, we connect the largest corporations in the industry to the best startups in the world, such as Dropel.Become a corporate partner: you’ll gain access to a network of over 30,000 future-thinking startups, as well as first-hand access to the latest trends.

Kintra Fibers

Did you know that each time an item of clothing made with synthetic textiles is washed, about 1,000,000 microfibers are released? Synthetic textiles account for 65% of total fiber production, and yet only 8% of brands know their supply chain to the chemical supplier level.

Kintra Fibers is a material science company that makes high-performing and 100% bio-based polymers for textile use, formulated to keep our oceans microfiber-free. They use 100% bio-based inputs, and their polymer is 100% intrinsically compostable. This means that any Kintra fibers released through fabric laundry cycles will see their end-of-life at the compost environment within a wastewater treatment facility, instead of persisting to the ocean like traditional synthetic textiles.


Azolla is an early-stage biotechnology startup developing technology to replace toxic materials with sustainable, affordable options by converting pollution into biomaterial. Azolla’s biomanufacturing platform will empower industries to transform this CO2 into biomaterial that can be used to make everyday products, starting with textiles.

Their proprietary organism transforms CO2 into nanocellulose material for the textile industry – an industry that uses 98 million tons of non-renewable resources each year. Their unique synthetic biology approach leverages a bacterium that converts CO2 directly to nanocellulose, without fermentation, and therefore is cleaner, faster and cheaper. This sustainable fashion startup offers a unique, totally sustainable and regenerative pathway to generating this versatile material that is already widely used.

Dyeing innovation


There are no other printing/dyeing technologies that take the decoloring process into consideration, which is a crucial step if the fashion industry is to ever become fully circular. Even though consumers are becoming increasingly aware of the need to be more responsible in their purchase habits, being fashionable is still a priority for most of them. Vivdye’s concept allows them to work close to the final customers, providing them with access to their fashion desires with a clear conscience.

Vividye has developed a resource-efficient dyeing technology that can be used to apply all sorts of colors and designs to textiles. Unlike other dyeing methods used in the industry today, their technology is designed to facilitate the removal of the applied color when it is no longer wanted without harming the material. In other words, it makes it possible to decolor and recolor old textiles, giving them a new life. They specialize in reversible dyeing solutions for textiles, designed to satisfy current fast fashion trends in a sustainable and safe way.


DyeCoo‘s mission is to lead the textile industry to a lean and clean future. DyeCoo’s CO₂ technology is the world’s first 100% water-free and process chemical-free textile processing solution. Providing geographical freedom from water sources and offering textile manufacturers a head start on legislation that restricts the use of hazardous process chemicals. Its low operating costs allow you to elevate your short-term results and long-term ambitions.


Werewool develops biodegradable fibers with inherent color and performance. Werewool uses microbes to produce proteins for textile fibers with built-in color and performance properties, without the use of toxic plastics, dyes or finishes. They are harnessing nature’s strategy for material performance, using functional proteins to impart desired properties like color, stretch and waterproof in their textile fibers. Their fibers reduce dependence on agriculture, livestock and petrochemicals, and cut out detrimental dyeing and finishing processes from the textile supply chain.


This is an exciting time in the fashion industry. Innovation is happening all around us. Industry leaders should explore new business opportunities and implement solutions and collaborations with startups in the space. Doing so will prove essential in future-proofing your business, and is crucial in working with humanity today to meet the needs of future generations.

Posted on Leave a comment

Recycling and Upcycling in the Apparel Industry


Recycling and Upcycling in the Apparel Industry

Recycling and Upcycling in the Apparel Industry

The value added benefits that are gained with upcycling, are quickly driving it to a number one position in the aspirational fashion market. As a result it is slowly consigning its older first cousin ‘recycling’ to a mass consumer driven activity in the sustainability continuum. As efforts to grapple with continuity of supply of recycled materials (feedstock) grind their way up the sustainable innovation ladder, ‘upcycling’ is enjoying a freedom to soar into truly innovative materials and creations thanks mainly to the talent of emerging designers. These designs are hard to replicate and herald a new challenge for the luxury markets that is one of sustainable design leadership.

Whilst this article will focus on the drive to close the loop in the lifecycle of a garment and what this means for fast v slow fashion, it is not possible to look at the challenges in designing with post-consumer clothes without also examining the artificial construct in which fashion businesses operate. Like it or not designers are bound by legislative frameworks and regulations which create incentives as well as unintended consequences. Sometimes these constructs are not at the forefront in the daily machinations of a fashion business. And yet they shape industries and provide powerful tools to dictate the pace of change which in turn must meet the needs of consumers if the sector is to preserve, let alone increase its share of household expenditure.

As consumers grapple increasingly with information overload and the added responsibility that comes with physically checking the item quality after payment online, they rely on accrued brand performance which builds trust and reputation. They chose brands which reflect their lifestyle choices. The challenge with maintaining trust is that it takes a long time to build and reputations can be destroyed in an instant. It is not surprising then that a granular approach to the traceability of a fashion item is one of a suite of tools now available to companies to manage adherence to brand values. Even more encouraging is the evidence of all-inclusive approaches to sustainability being taken by leading brands in the mass market and the benefits that come with such a response.

Why is it important to recycle or upcycle?

Recycling /upcycling play a major role in the sustainability criteria of economic, environmental and social dimensions. They underwrite a closed loop model which funds the notion of “for all forever” in a globe of finite resources. For the fashion sector recycling contributes to the elimination of waste through reuse of materials and finished garments, conservation of the environment in particular reduction in landfill and pollution through redirection of waste to alternative uses and preservation of natural resources including water and natural virgin fibres through a model in which the same materials can be used over and over again. As the market moves away from staple and towards continuous filaments, the opportunities to grind blend and extrude fibres offers enormous potential for innovation in recycling technologies in addition to economic stimulus and employment.

Securing continuous supply would also have a flow on effect to upcycling which often commences at the beginning of the material development process. Upcycling therefore has an inherent stake in other sustainable activities such as design for reuse, reduction of carbon and water footprints, reduction of air pollution (greenhouse gases), use of renewable energy, ethical treatment of labour, adoption of product safety standards, safe use of dye stuffs & chemical treatments; use of biodegradable packaging and elimination of animal cruelty in the processing of fibre, leather and furs.

There is one other global incentive driving the recycling/upcycling trend. According to the United Nations report released in June 2013, World Population Prospects: the 2012 Revision, the current world population of 7.2 billion is projected to reach 9.6 billion by 2050. With the rise in affluence of the emerging countries, fear mounts about the strain on finite resources particularly natural resources. The questions being asked are “Where will the fibres, materials and items be derived to meet the demand and how much will be needed?” The fashion sector simply must find a way to deal with the issues it is facing, a scarcity of supply of raw materials and an abundance of waste product. It must ‘learn to churn’. To do this it must firstly also identify and measure the extent of the problem by quantifying and reporting on worldwide trade using units and weight.

Posted on Leave a comment

What is meant by Vintage Fashion Style?

The word “vintage” is oftentimes used to describe the style of clothing that ranges from 20 to 100 years old and it represents the era of the times during which it was manufactured. The condition that is needed for a certain piece of clothing to be categorized as vintage is that it should have a concrete reflection of the trends and styles that are often linked by many to that particular era. You may find vintage clothing as an Haute Couture or in high-quality mainstream fashion labels and it can be new, used, handmade or even manufactured.

Apart from that, you also need to understand that the definition of vintage can be very flexible hence for every new decade, there will be new things that can be fit into this category and therefore be labeled as vintage. It is also important for you to know that every item that is classified as vintage will become antique as time passes by. Any vintage clothing that is at least 100 years old or more will fall into the category of antique.

Some examples of Clothing with Vintage Fashion Style (from the 1920s to 1990s)

  • The 1920s: Long beads, Flapper Dresses, T-strap shoes, and Heeled Mary Janes
  • The 1930s: Puffed and Fluttery sleeves, Bolero Jackets, Oxfords, Fedoras, Peep-toe Shoes and Slingbacks
  • The 1940s: Wool plaids skirts and straight tweed, Reptile Shoes and Handbags, Brooches and Platform Shoes
  • The 1950s: Shirtwaist Dresses, Full Skirts with Petticoats, Fur Trim, Strings of Pearls, Twin Sweater Sets, and Wayfarer Sunglasses
  • The 1960s: Jackie Kennedy style, Elegant Pillbox Hats, and Box-Jacket suits Flowing Tops, Bell-Bottom Jeans, and Bohemian Style
  • The 1970s: Birkin bag, Platforms, Boho-Chic, Flare Jeans, Block Heels, Thigh-High Boots, and Khaki
  • The 1980s: Gold Chains, Izod Golf Shirts, Sweaters with Strong Shoulders Pads and Blazers, and Stillettos
  • The 1990s: Leggings, Chokers, Baggy Flannel Shirts, and Big Sweaters

How to Get Your Vintage Clothes?

If you would like to have your vintage clothes then you should search for the stores that have vintage in the name of the store or the descriptions of the clothes. You should always ask the people in charge to make sure that it’s vintage before you decide to buy it for yourself. Apart from that, you may be able to find some vintage clothes in a used clothing store but the type of clothes that you will find are mostly old clothes. I would highly recommend you to go straight to an official vintage store so that you will be able to find a professional collection of vintage pieces as well as an owner who has a lot of experience in vintage designs to help you to make your decisions on which pieces that you truly love. Talking about the kids, we recommend checking out Petit Bateau shop where you’ll find high-quality vintage and modern clothing from France.

Why do people would want to dress in this Fashion Style?

Most of the time, people would dress in this fashion style so that they would be able to deliver a subliminal message to society to make a statement for themselves so that they could stand up for the things that they believe in. They usually would be attracted to items that are handmade from high-quality materials or at least any items that possess a unique material value. One of the things that are beautiful about this fashion style is the fact that the level of beauty of this fashion style will depend on the personal preferences of the people who are wearing it hence making it a fashion style that gives ultimate freedom to the people.

What is meant by Casual Wear?

Casual wear is not a particular set of codes rather the real definition of casual wear is anything that considered traditionally by many to be not suitable or inappropriate for a regular occasion that requires a formal dressing code. Think of casual wear as a particular set of clothes that you wear to make yourself feel relaxing but at the same time maintaining the level of elegance so that you would be able to use it comfortably as your everyday outfits. Since you need to pick a particular garment and match it with the other, casual wear will usually fuse the way you want to look with the comforts of your garments so be creative, try to test which clothes suit you best.

A casual dress code may be one of the best chance for those who love to express the true sense of personal style to the public. Whether it’s your personal preferences that made you want something rugged or sleek, down-to-earth or upscale, casual wear invites you to dress the way that makes you feel comfortable to you all the time. Instead of focusing all of your attention into the formalities, casual wear enables you to find the balance that you want between the level of comforts, personal style, as well as individuality so that you will be able to dress fashionably but at the same time wearing a functional outfit.

Posted on Leave a comment

Fashion Stylist Careers in India

A fashion stylist’s job is to make actors and celebrities look like stars. At a more granular level, it involves working with public figures on their look for a particular occasion or event – like photo shoots (for music videos, advertisements, movies, serials, magazine covers), media interviews, award ceremonies, press conferences, or parties.

It’s a great career option if you are fascinated by the glamour industry and want to rub shoulders with the rich & famous. The popularity of your clients works directly for you as your work, creativity and talent are seen by a huge audience.

As a wardrobe stylist (another name for the same profession), the network and contacts you build over time with influential folks can pave the way for bigger and more interesting opportunities.

Fashion stylist Shreeja Rajgopal shares more about the field of fashion styling.

What are the pre-requisites to become a fashion stylist?

Shreeja: I personally feel there’s nothing like learning on the job. Assisting a stylist for a year or so would be ideal to learn everything you need to about styling. Education always helps, although in the case of styling it’s best learnt while on the field.

If needed, one could undergo diplomas/short courses in fashion styling that gives you a base of how things work.

Styling as a career path is really growing and there are plenty of universities offering courses – internationally and in India as well.

While I enrolled for my short courses on styling in London, I assisted stylists on brand shoots, interned with a few magazines and production houses which really widened my horizons.

Also I highly recommend one to do constant research on websites or blogs to be updated with everything that’s going on, it really helps!

How can someone decide whether a career in the fashion industry is right for them?

Shreeja: It’s simple, you need to be passionate about everything that comes with fashion – keeping up with new trends, new designers in the market, working late hours, having insane last minute changes, lot of running around etc.

At the end of everything you need to really enjoy what you do, that’s the only thing that matters!

Posted on Leave a comment

Fashion stylist

A fashion stylist designs the visual images we see in magazine articles or videos in the music industry.

Fashion stylists work for individuals, fashion houses and clothing brands. Their main responsibilities include providing fashion advice; choosing and co-ordinating outfits for models in photo shoots or actors in television and film; and choosing props and accessories and preparing them for shoots.

Types of stylist

Stylists could work in any of the following areas:

  • personal
  • e-commerce/online
  • photographic
  • catwalk
  • still life
  • product
  • blogging/social media.
  • Film/Television industry

Work activities

  • Keeping up to date with current and changing trends in fashion and design.
  • Advising clients on fashion styling for visuals.
  • Selecting the most appropriate pieces from collections and ranges for the shoot.
  • Purchasing props for shoots.
  • Supervising photo shoots.

Work conditions

  • Travel: travel to various locations for meetings and photo shoots is integral to the job; international travel is usually a feature.
  • Working hours: are typically long and irregular.
  • Location: Many stylists are based in Dublin and Belfast, and are required to travel.


  • Employed junior stylists can expect to earn in the region of €20,000 to €23,000.
  • Senior stylists earn higher salaries of between €26,000 and €34,000.
  • Being a freelancer is very common in this industry, and as a freelancer you’ll be paid either a daily or hourly rate. An assistant stylist can earn anything from €55 to €170 per day -if paid hourly, this is in the region of €10.10 to €11.10 per hour

Entry requirements

Relevant degree subjects are fashion merchandising, styling and designing. Institutes such as the National College of Art and Design in offer a variety of appropriate courses. The fashion industry is extremely competitive, making relevant experience essential for getting ahead.

Posted on Leave a comment

Impact of fashion

It’s often said fashion is the second or third most polluting industry in the world, but no matter the ranking there is no doubt that the fashion industry is a major contributor in the climate crisis. Making fabric uses water, energy, chemicals, and other resources that most people don’t think about, or ever see. We think knowledge is power, so we talk about resource use, climate change, and other impacts of fashion

We all know that the world is facing extreme freshwater scarcity – in fact over a billion people don’t have access to safe water.(1) Fashion is the second largest consumer and polluter of water due to the processing of raw materials, the amount of water used to manufacture clothes, and the microfibers that synthetics shed.(2)

Manufacturing textiles is extremely water intensive. For example, producing one pair of denim jeans uses over 9,000 gallons of water.(3) Not to mention that approximately 450 million pairs of jeans are sold in the U.S. alone.(4) The typical pair of Ref Jeans uses approximately 1,500 gallons of water.

After the water is used in the manufacturing process, this often-polluted water is then sent back to our rivers, lakes and oceans. The World Bank estimates almost 20% of global industrial water pollution comes from the treatment and dyeing of textiles.(5)

Plastic pollution
Synthetic clothes are made with plastic and when you wash synthetics they shed small plastic pieces called microfibers. Microfibers are too small to be filtered out by waste treatment plants, so they end up in our waterways and oceans by the billions. Once in the ocean, they act as pollution magnets that marine animals mistake for food, and which can eventually end up in our food.

We use recycled synthetics to lessen our environmental impact, but these potentially shed microfibers too. That’s why we’re working hard to phase out all synthetics, recycled or not, from highly washed garments like tops, bottoms, and dresses. While we can’t phase out synthetics in all categories like swim, we are trying to find solutions to help you wear and wash all your clothes without adding to this mess. Right now, our solution is to gently hand wash your clothes in cold water–including your swimwear. You can also use a GuppyFriend bag to capture microfibers when you hand or machine wash your stuff.

Climate change
Contrary to what some of those crazies say, we think climate change is real and fashion is not making it better. From growing textile fibers to moving fabrics around the world, making clothes sadly fuels this global climate crisis.

Production emissions
Production processes emit CO2 and other greenhouse gases which pollute our atmosphere and contribute to climate change. Fashion production makes up 10% of humanity’s carbon emissions.(6) For example, conventional cotton, leather and other raw materials grown in industrial farming operations create huge energy footprints. Also, polyester, nylon, and other petroleum-based materials emit harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and nitrous oxide, a greenhouse gas almost 300 times more potent than CO2.(7)

Chemicals & Pollution
The production of textile fibers requires an intensive use of chemicals. Approximately 43 million tonnes of chemicals are used annually to produce textiles.(8)

Runoff from these dye houses can contain heavy metals, alkali salts, toxic solids, and harmful pigments. About 40% of colorants used around the world contain organically bound chlorine, a known carcinogen.(9) It can cause cancer like tobacco, asbestos and DDT. What a nightmare-factory.

Trashed clothes
Americans throw away over 16 million tons of textiles a year.(10) Over 95% of the clothing thrown away in the US can be recycled or reused, but sadly more than 85% ends up in landfills.(11)(12) Even in a landfill, these materials don’t just go away—nylon takes 30 to 40 years to biodegrade, while polyester requires more than 200 years.(13) Talk about a hand me down.

We do not think conventional cotton is awesome. It has some of the most harmful environmental impacts of all fabric. Yet cotton made up about 25% of global fiber production in 2019.(14)

According to the World Wildlife Foundation, conventional cotton consumes 11% of the world’s pesticide sales and 24% of the world’s insecticide sales, despite the fact that cotton only uses 2.4% of total arable land. Terrible ratio if you ask us.

Most cotton requires high levels of irrigation and water-intensive processing. A cotton t-shirt can use up to 2,000 gallons of water to make (that’s close to 48 full bathtubs’ worth).(3) Irrigation systems input and circulate chemicals into the groundwater, making cotton production the largest textile contributor to freshwater and soil toxicity in the world.

Other not awesome fabrics
Did you know most fast fashion is actually made out of oil? We were shocked when we found out, too. Polyester, acrylic, nylon, spandex, and acetate are all made from nonrenewable fossil fuels, which require a bunch of energy to produce and emit gross stuff from the landfill.

Footwear represents about 1/5 of the total impact of the apparel industry and nearly 1/4 of the climate impacts.(15) 97% of the impact of shoes happens during material processing and manufacturing, so that’s where we focused our attention with Ref Shoes.(16)

The manufacturing process emits pollution into the air and waterways harming environmental and human health. For every ton of polyester, manufacturers emit over five tons of carbon dioxide.

These textiles take anywhere from 20 to 200 years to biodegrade.(12) When they do, they release chemicals like formaldehyde, heavy metals, BPA, and PFCs into the environment. So basically you wear it twice and it lives in a landfill with its formaldehyde and BPA buddies for 200 years.

Posted on Leave a comment



Professional training helps fashion styling aspirants understand the nuances of different personalities, body types, and colour schemes. Even the world-famous fashion stylists and celebrity stylists, such as Rachel Zoe, Anna Bingemann, Anaita Shroff Adajania, Kate Young, and Petra Flannery put in years of hard work and mastered the most important aspects of an overall image before making it to the highest of ranks in the glamorous world.

ICBI offers training on 24 modules based on a world-class curriculum, which helps students become fashion-conscious problem solvers. Its globally-recognized certification co-branded with Conselle Institute of Image Management (USA) and SQA also gives professionals credibility, which is much-needed in the fashion styling industry


The knowledge of how the fashion industry works is important for building repute as a fashion stylist and getting new projects. This requires in-depth research of the industry trends and a fruitful network of professionals. 

ICBI’s repute, pre-established network, and large client base gives fashion styling aspirants the right exposure they need to enter the industry.


To develop industry-specific skills and knowledge, expert guidance and practice are key. This is the reason it is best to take help from professional image consulting institutes, such as ICBI, where you canget ongoing access to trainers and hands-on training on various aspects, including building your business portfolio, identifying the right sourcing solutions, and promoting your work, in addition to enhancing aspirants’ fashion-related outlook on colour theory, trend evolution, etc. 

  • Step 4: Build your brandBuild your brand by educating your audience on various fashion trends, clothing styles, body types, colour schematics, etc. Write blogs and post informational videos on YouTube to connect with your audience.
  • Step 5: Establish social media presenceLeverage social media to market your services and expand the scope for collaborations. Use Google ads and paid social media ads to increase your reach and promote your work among your audience.