The movement of emerging sustainable fashion designers is getting stronger.
Redress, an NGO with a mission to reduce waste in the fashion industry, is propelling these designers forward with the launch of The EcoChic Design Award Alumni Network; a platform to connect eco-minded designers with industry opportunities to further support their growth and impact. Designers within the network are all alumni of The EcoChic Design Award, the world’s largest sustainable fashion design competition.
Over the past five years, since its inception in 2011, Redress’ The EcoChic Design Award has gathered over 100 talented alumni from across Asia and Europe who continue to practice sustainable fashion design. Now, from showcasing waste reducing collections on catwalks across the world; launching their own sustainable brands; to passing on knowledge to their peers, these previous competitors are becoming a catalyst for change and evidence of the competitions’ positive impact.
“We are witnessing an appetite among our alumni to take an active role in transforming the fashion industry to be more environmentally conscious. It is crucial that they get the support they need to enable them to make lasting change and the Alumni Network has been created to do exactly that – these designers are passionate and open for business!”, notes Christina Dean, Founder of Redress.
The idea for the network came following a survey Redress conducted, trying to better understand the needs of these designers in further developing their careers in sustainable fashion.
Findings from the survey included an increasing need for connectivity with retailers, brands and other organisations, finding funding to promote their work and deepening their knowledge of sustainability in order to succeed in sustainable design.
The EcoChic Design Award programme is a springboard into sustainable design, but Redress believe it is as essential to support the competitors onwards into their careers. Over the years Redress has worked closely with Ecochic alumni on projects with a number of partners including Yahoo, Ford Motor Company, Messe Frankfurt and celebrity artist Kary Ng. But as the competition experiences more cycles, the network is growing, and with it the hunger and passion for a better future for the fashion industry.
Kudos to Redress for identifying this need and developing a platform to address it. We look forward to seeing more sustainable fashion designers succeeding in commercial careers.