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Green is the new Black
Véronique Saunier | 07 May 2019

The Asia-based “Green is the New Black” collective organized their annual “Conscious Festival” at the Kerry Hotel in Hong Kong on April 13-14th. The event features sustainable lifestyle products as well as inspiring talks and is a unique opportunity for the public to discover and experience a greener and more conscious lifestyle. Green is the new Black is a member of the Fashion Revolution, a global movement that creates and promotes a more ethical and sustainable future for the fashion industry. The movement was born after the Rana Plaza factory collapse in Bangladesh, which killed 1138 people and injured many more on 24th April 2013. Since then, every April, Fashion Revolution organizes the #whomademyclothes campaign, a commemoration meant to encourage brands and producers to demonstrate transparency in their supply chain.

Ethically sourced fabrics, eco-friendly dyes, textile heritage, up-cycled materials and garments are just a few of the attributes of sustainable fashion  brands represented at the “Conscious Festival”. One of these brands, Franci, is a regular exhibitor at the APLF’s Cashmere World. Franci’s pashminas are sourced from a small family owned craft business in Nepal, using traditional wooden handlooms to individually weave each delicate pashmina.  “Our social objectives when sourcing and producing are to work toward the sustainability and empowerment of communities by ensuring the artisans are paid fairly for their work,” says  Franci’s founder, Surinder Francis. 

One of the fundamental evolutions in today’s consumer behavior is a reduction in clothing consumption volume with a simultaneous effort to increase the lifetime of clothing items. Rental, resale, and refurbishment business models lengthen the product  life cycle while offering an attractive variation on the “newness factor” that consumers desire. Exemplifying this trend, a thriving fashion repair-café run by fashion enthusiast Ana Blanca Pare teaches consumers how to mend damaged clothes in a creative way.

Meanwhile, rental couture closet Wardrobista’s approach is to use a subscription rental model to grant customers affordable, temporary access to an array of clothing and accessories. According to the recently published McKinsey’s “The State of Fashion 2019: A year of awakening” report, the number of brands getting into the rental, resale, and refurbishment business is set for a significant increase.

Given the number of innovative initiatives demonstrated at the “Conscious Festival” this year, it is clear that Hong Kong will not be left behind in this Conscious Fashion revolution, and will increasingly establish itself as a leading figure in sustainable fashion in the region. 

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