Image of a busy street in Delhi


Namaste Ladies and Gentlemen. I am on a mission to share some information with you about the future of Ethical and Sustainable Fashion in India

I have been in India for 2 months now, based in an incredibly hot Uttar Pradesh, on a guest teaching position at The Institute of Fine Art. I have been teaching creative thinking, experimental design development, draping techniques and illustration to B.A Fashion students (an opening provided by University of the Arts London and The Institute of Fine Arts, Modinagar).

With the opportunity to teach, came the decision to stay longer and get answers regarding Ethical business and Sustainable practice in this part of the world. I want to find out what drives Indian creatives to get involved with sustainable, ethical design or in some cases disregard it altogether. Does their approach to sustainability and ethical issues differ from a western approach? Who is doing what and where? I intend to provide information that educates the reader and gives way to possibilities to create trade, whilst building on The India Network on the Ethical Fashion Forum’s Networking site.

The blog will contain interviews with contemporary fashion, product and graphic designers who have involved sustainability to varying degrees in there work. It will also include details of my trips to design, manufacturing and export houses to see what they look like from a layman’s perspective. As well as discovering information about fabric developments, I hope to highlight the pros and cons of bamboo, banana and pineapple fabrics. I will be visiting the finest silk weavers in Bihar, Himalayan yak wool weavers, and organic cotton growers and producers too.

During the weekends I’ve been coughing and choking my way in to Delhi, where there is a huge amount of construction work happening for the Common Wealth Games. With the help of new friend, Guarav Gupta (Textiles Designer and University of the Arts London ambassador in India), I managed to get into India Fashion Week, and have met high end Indian fashion, product and graphic designers, fabric manufacturers and factory owners who produce for major household brands in The UK and USA.

There are so many valued opinions and important contacts here at my finger tips, which I aim to update you with regularly. In the past I have blogged for Better Thinkings ‘Perfect T-Shirt’, researching and experimenting with natural dyes and sustainable/ bio degradable packaging, and also completed a variety of Fashion, Accessory, Photography and Fine Art internships at John Galliano, Lucy Orta, Paul Savile, and Gareth Pugh to name a few.

Some of these people have taken up projects involving sustainability and are upbeat about working sustainably in the future, but there are others who believe it’s all ‘bullshit’, (and those where not my own words!). To hear that Organic and Sustainability were seen as impossible and untrue by two designers was a little disheartening, but at present it is a trend here, and I think there is a lack of drive and initiative from some.

In the next blog I will be interviewing the passionate and pro active luxury Ethical Designer, Samant Chauhan, and drawing parallels between teaching methods, Indian culture and how Fashion is valued in this fast changing country.

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Comment by siddhartha on May 31, 2009 at 18:10
Hi Sarah,

Thanks for your reply, nice to hear about you

Well I am Bangalore based, Are you doing research on fibers? If yes just let me know, I have few excellent contacts in the field of fibers and paper.

For better insight of the innovation 'DPOL' you can visit

Do you have any plans to visit Bangalore ? or what will be your tentative schedule in India from 5Jun - 15 July ? Would like to meet and explore further opportunity in the sector.

For further details you can buzz me anytime, it will be my pleasure to answer your queries.


0091 9742343254
Comment by Sarah Murphy on May 26, 2009 at 11:55
Hello All

A message from Sarah, Im happy to say that after these two comments I am following them up and excited about learning od the New developments with DPOL 'Direct Panel on Loom' and meeting Alberto in Kolkata to visit the Craft Resource Centre!

Thanks for your Comments

Sarah is excited
Comment by Alberto Saccavini on May 24, 2009 at 6:42
Thanks for this first post, look forward to read more.
I'm Alberto Saccavini and i'm now in Kolkata working for Craft Resource Center a Fair Trade company, we do Home and Fashion Accessories using a variety of different techniques and materials. If your trip brings you to West Bengal, come and visit us and our producers.
till the next post.

Comment by siddhartha on May 23, 2009 at 20:34
NIce to hear about you.
Well I am Siddhartha Upadhyaya, an ethical fashion designer cum technologist from india.

We have come up with a breakthrough in sustainable fashion designing 'DPOL'

DPOL means 'Direct panel on loom'. The technology and collection is first of its kinds and patent has been acquired by its promoters and designer. DPOL is a signature technology which has been presented and acknowledged at national level conferences by stalwarts of fashion industry.

Using DPOL one can produce ready to stitch shaped woven garment components. These components are finished at the edges by selvedge. This considerably increases fabric efficiency by approx 15%-22% and reduces lead time by approx 50%. DPOL supports sustainability by reducing chemical and other wastages by 17%-20%, thus imparting the eco-friendly nature to the apparels right from the inception of the process to develop the garments.

Apart from the eco-friendly aspect of the innovation, there are many notable uniqueness, some of these are: Continuity of design, proportionate design, non repeatable design and motifs etc.

For your quick reference, you may like to visit our website

Can we meet up sometime with regard to same. Please send me your mail address/phone number at, my phone no. is 0091 ( the country code ) 9742343254

looking forward to meet you


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