“As consumers you just get to see the product that is hanging on the rack but you don’t get to see the process that goes behind it.”
-Runa Ray (Featured Creator, Designer)
Runa Ray is a sustainable fashion business owner constantly searching for new ways to implement “Green Fashion.” Born and raised in India, Runa Ray received much of her education from the National Institute of Fashion Technology where many notable alumni have been born. After obtaining much industry experience, Runa Ray founded MOJO Designs Studio where she began her career as a fashion environmentalist. As a fashion environmentalist, Runa has committed herself and her brand to fair trade garments, organic fabrics and zero waste initiatives. Runa’s designs push conversations surrounding the environment as it relates to fashion.
Round Table Conversation Run Down
- Keep the end in mind. When creating a piece always try to keep the life cycle in mind. What will happen to the garment once it is done in the consumer’s eye? Try to include instructions on turning the garment into a different form of clothing through a basic process. If the garment is degradable include information on how to properly dispose of the piece.
- Traceability is almost impossible. As a designer it is nearly impossible to trace the process of all the different agents that produce a piece. Making sure the manufacturer is carrying out sustainable practices or ensuring there is proper labor rights in the businesses as a designer you will interact with is difficult. There are no sustainability watchdogs within the fashion business. However, Business Attorney Shirin Movahed noted that there are indeed some private companies that are looking to function as “watchdogs” but ensuring sustainability practices in a legal contract is always the best way to prevent any complications.
- Sustainable Products Demand Higher Prices. Getting consumers to understand the waste that goes into designing will help to slowly put an end to blind consumerism. Dee Rivera, CEO of DCG Group Media, mentioned in the round table conversation the importance of providing branding and messaging about the sustainable process you are using as a designer. Educating the consumer is huge and will likely make the shopper more inclined to purchase an item regardless of higher prices.
From Conversation to Implementation
Sustainability has been around for a very long time; it has only just recently been defined by the 17 SDG’s or sustainable development goals. The United Nations made these goals in 2015 and they serve as an interconnected blueprint to promise a sustainable future. The fashion industry is a huge waste contributor and hence must play a large role in this blueprint. Our featured creator and the rest of the fashion professionals included in the conversation are all an excellent example of how putting in a little extra work to both spread awareness and learn more about environmental fashion has the impact to save our planet.
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