Sustainability is becoming significantly more important for the fashion industry due to consumers’ increasing awareness of environment. When a fashion company aims to promote sustainability, the main linkage is to develop a sustainable supply chain. But can fast fashion yield sustainable results?
“Real quick” is the key, of course, as H&M makes its billion-dollar profits by churning out a canny mix of staple pieces and runway trends. Sometimes they’re co-signed by designers like Balmain and Moschino; sometimes they’re riffs on vintage finds or designer hits. But the products keep coming.
H&M’s head designer Ann-Sofie Johansson reveals to Elle that she’s challenged the retail giant to change their carbon footprint, creating a new Conscious Exclusive collection from fabrics made of citrus peels, pineapple bark, and even blue algae.
Elle asked Johansson what she think about the word “sustainability”. She explained to the magazine that it represents a significant change but at the same time every small one we do is worth it.
“Things like turning off the computer when you’re not using it, trying not to print out as much at work, recycling as much as possible. All those things can make a change, but where fashion is concerned, the first thing we need to talk about is care”.
She also dealt with ‘Millennials’, growing surrounded by fast fashion, thinking every outfit is disposable. Johansson said this does happen but also the younger generation is so much more aware about what’s going on with climate change, and about the conversations happening around sustainability. They’re the ones leading the protests in a lot of instances.
But one thing she really does wish the younger generation knew is that “fast fashion is not disposable fashion. Not necessarily. We can make things at a fast pace that are still responsible.” We as customers are all more aware about what’s happening now but we should be more responsible. And as Johansson explained, small things can make the difference.
Check out the full interview with H&M’s head designer Ann-Sofie Johansson here, and have a look down below at the photoshoot Elle made for the special interview.
Irina Shayk, Alek Wek, Camila Morrone, Ann-Sofie Johansson, Emmanuelle Chriqui, Dakota Fanning, Amber Valetta and Halima Aden all in H&M’s Conscious Exclusive Collection.