Fashion Revolution Week is the #whomademyclothes campaign in April, which happens at the time of the Rana Plaza factory collapse, where 1,138 people were killed and many more injured on 24th April 2013.
This week is focused especially on encouraging millions of people around the globe to ask brands, "Who made my clothes?" and demand greater transparency in the fashion supply chain.
Today, 22nd April, myself and fashion blogger, Tolmeia aka Tollydollyposhfashion spent the day supporting Fashion Revolution in Prato, Italy, and in so doing hoping to play a small part in helping to change the fashion industry once and for all.
We headed for the design workshop of Tessa Moroder in the centre of Prato. Here we found quality Italian fabrics and handmade tailoring all manufactured locally.
Prato remains one of the largest and oldest textile centres in the world. It began to specialize in wool textiles in the Middle Ages. This area became a modern industrial area at the end of 19th century.
During the first decade of the new century Prato’s textile industry underwent a serious downsizing. It lost part of its output in the medium-low end of the market but keeping its strength in the higher value-added production. Of course Prato suffered also the 2007-2009 recession and the downturn that has been concerning the domestic market since the second half of 2011.
Today, Prato still maintains a leading position in Europe in the production of yarns and fabrics for the fashion industry.
As Tolmeia and I wandered around we took great pleasure in recognizing that the clothing on display was of an extremely high standard in both design and in quality of textile production and tailoring. The designers here had obviously been taught well and attention to detail was evident on every piece.
We could buy the precious fabrics on offer or have the chance to commission a custom piece directly.
I was particularly interested in the designer Andrea Moretti Sartoria, whose most exquisite silk dresses, cut on the bias are made locally in his studio in Firenze. He told us of the importance of ethical brands, and how every design he makes is a timeless piece, kept and cherished by its owner for years to come.
There was no hint of fast fashion in sight. We found English born designer Alessandra Meigh originally from the UK with her Chinese inspired shoes, made to order, the heels handmade and sculpted by herself in a stunning 'redwood'.
And Eugen Nita, a freelance fashion designer based in Florence, whose menswear, made to measure and tailor made jackets were made with the finest of stitching details and handmade buttons.
Whilst chatting to the event organisers and designers it was clear they all wanted quality fabric and handmade tailoring to return to sustainable consumption. They wanted to express the pleasure in recognizing something that has been well done and how it is far better to have less of something made well, than many items made on cheaply, from brands where sustainability is not a priority on their agenda.
For Tolmeia and I, it was a chance to get closer to Italian production, the value of work, the value of the handmade, the pieces and more generally the quality in textile production and tailoring. We believe transparency is the first step to transforming this industry.
Fashion students and those either entering this important industry, go ahead and use your own voices and your own personal power to help change it!
Together we are stronger. Join the Fashion Revolution movement today, and tell your personal stories!
Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team. Your information will not be shared.
Add your details below and we'll send you free courses and other resources as well as great offers.