Sustainability is no new subject on the global agenda. In the context of fashion it refers to clothing that does not put undue strain on the environment right from the harvesting of raw materials to end use. Speaking strictly from an environmental perspective, creating any type of clothing sustainably involves farming, harvesting, processing and transport of materials without the use of harmful pesticides, toxic dyes or fossil fuels. The idea may sound rather simple, but the process isn’t. And nor is the transition for consumers. It isn’t only designers who must change their production habits, it’s a sticking point for shoppers and their purchasing habits, too.
Reportedly topped only by oil, the fashion industry is contributing to major environmental destruction – mainly because consumers insist on buying so many clothes at such cheap prices. Alternatives do exist. The solution lies in buying less and choosing better quality items that are made as ethically as possible. With this in mind, keeping sustainability at the forefront of decision making has found its way to the heart of Alana Sorokin’s life’s work.
Born of a deep love and respect for the ocean, and brought to life by the quirky, marine-inspired designs of talented street artists, Sorokin launched chic childrenswear brand Joseph & Alexander in 2018, with recycled fabrics made from ocean plastics. If you consciously decide to purchase a garment made using a recycled material derived from plastic waste or an exciting new fibre, such as cruelty-free leather made in a lab, you are supporting start-up companies creating new markets, and avoiding the toxic impacts associated with conventional textiles.
Conceptualised to ignite curiosity within the minds of its youngest wearers, each piece is designed to spark an “educational conversation” around critical world issues. hampioning environmental action is at the heart of the brand. Operating consciously using recycled fabric from ocean plastics, eco-friendly ink and reusable packaging, each collection depicts awareness-raising narratives of minimising our environmental footprint, and having fun whilst doing so.
Switching to more ethical fashion options does take forethought, but the health and survival of the planet depends on it.