New York Fashion Week opens the fashion week ball each and every season. Fashion is one of the largest trades in the city, employing 175,000 people. Ethical fashion is quickly getting more support within the industry. Last June, US Vogue styled Cameron Diaz almost exclusively in, to quote Anna Wintour’s editorial, “clothes ethically produced from organic materials”. Lucie Goulet writes.

The Ethical Fashion Show – September 20-22

Two main ethical fashion initiatives will take place during this September’s Fashion Week, namely the Ethical Fashion Show and the Ethical Fashion Preview. Although neither event is part of the official Mercedes Benz Fahion Week, they are both organised within recognised industry exhibitions.

Similar to the event organised in Paris since 2004, an Ethical Fashion Show will take place in New York as part of the International Fashion Trade Show, The Train.

The exhibition will contain educational elements about the ins and outs of ethical fashion, including icons showing why the clothes exhibited come from sustainable development. Three stalls organised by theme will display natural fibre and organic cotton, the challenges of recycling and region-specific skills.

The Show will be completed by an exhibition of photographs of a selection of ethical brands by French photographer Lionel Astruc. Astruc has previously published books about ecotourism and sustainable and ecological initiatives throughout the world.

Ethical Fashion Preview, Nolcha Fashion Week – September 14th

Organised simultaneously with New York Fashion Week, the Ethical Fashion Preview “spotlights designers who create collections using environmentally friendly materials and processes, and manufacture their collections respecting fair trade and fair wage principles”.

Bel Esprit, the international showroom for responsible and sustainable fashion will send eight designers from all over the world to the event. Akela Stoklas, Article 23 and Elena Garcia will be amongst the creators representing Europe. Other exhibitors include Anna Gutierrez: Wearable Art, Moonlight Jewellery and Emesha.

In addition to global companies Aveda, Clarins and Starbucks, the event is supported by EDUN LIVE, the organic and cotton T-shirts brand, created by Ali Hewson and Bono. Christine Driscoll, Business Development Manager, explained that the Preview was “the way to create sustainable fashion from the ground up.”

Deborah Pokallus, Bel Esprit Founder, believes that the presence of ethical fashion in New York is “a tremendous statement about the growing importance of ethical fashion in the global market.”

The Ethical Fashion Preview is an initiative of Nolcha Fashion Week, which mainly features independent and emerging designers. The Preview will take place at the Carlton Hotel on Madison and is only open to industry professionals.

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