New Straits Times

Sustainabl­e collection

A fast fashion brand rolls out a range of clothing approved by an animal rights organisati­on, writes Syida Lizta Amirul Ihsan

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BACK when high fashion equals the massive use of leather, fur and inhumane treatment of animals, animal rights organisati­on Peta (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) is always at loggerhead­s with fashion’s taste makers.

Strikes were often held during fashion shows and fur-fielding brands were usually the target.

Decades later, things are changing and the industry can no longer silence the voices of conscience, especially by Gen Z, who are hyper-vocal about everything — from climate change to the treatment of animals and mental health.

Superstar Billie Eilish, for example, has single-handedly gotten Oscar de la Renta to go fur-free when the singer agreed to wear its peach ballgown to this year’s Met Gala.

Young stars are wielding their power for the good of the people and the Earth.

More brands have gone fur-free, a spot once solely occupied by Stella McCartney, whose brand is built on an animal crueltyfre­e philosophy.

Now, Versace, Michael Kors and Gucci have stopped using fur, alongside Tommy Hilfiger and Giorgio Armani.

It’s about time mass fashion brands join the bandwagon.

ANIMAL-FRIENDLY

Fast fashion brand H&M recently dropped its Co-Exist Story, an animal-friendly fashion collection approved by Peta.

With a line for women, men and children, the collection spotlights alternativ­es to animal-derived fabrics and processes.

Co-Exist Story is the third instalment in H&M’s Innovation Stories initiative, launched this year to showcase sustainabl­e innovation­s, materials and designs. It started off with Science Story, championin­g cutting-edge sustainabl­e materials. What followed was Colour Story, with more sustainabl­e methods of working with colour.

H&M creative adviser Ann-Sofie Johansson says the Co-Exist Story collection epitomises the brand’s ongoing commitment to explore innovative alternativ­es to animal-derived fabrics while still offering cutting-edge fashion.

“H&M and Peta have enjoyed a positive dialogue throughout the project, and we are proud to support the valuable work Peta does every day,” she says.

The collection is designed for city dwellers who flit between late-night parties and early-morning hikes. It combines innovative animal-substitute fabric sand sustain ab ly sourced materials.

Expect extreme volumes, 90s-inflected partywear and functional outerwear featuring Flwrdwn, an alternativ­e to animal down made using wildflower­s, and Vegea, a plant-based substitute for oil-based and animal-derived leathers.

CITY AND NATURE

H&M senior designer Malin Dubois says this collection is designed for modern urbanites and those who love the social hubs of city life, but equally crave weekends spent wearing their waterproof rubber boots immersed in nature.

“We’re proud to be able to unite two passions: versatile, fashion-forward design with more sustainabl­e Peta-approved alternativ­es to animal-derived materials.”

Key pieces for women include an oversized faux fur coat in recycled polyester and a one-shouldered knitted dress with a dramatic fringed hem in Econyl blend. Econyl is made of nylon waste, which would otherwise pollute the Earth.

For men, a graffiti-print recycled nylon oversized anorak shows a streetwear-led aesthetic. In accessorie­s, heavy-duty rubber fisherman’s boots in Yulex natural rubber take centre stage for women, with cosy Flwrdwn puffer shoes for men.

Yulex is a neoprene material made from natural rubber, harvested from rubber trees that are Forest Stewardshi­p Council-certified by the Rainforest Alliance. The rubber is also chlorine-free.

The collection also includes vegan make-up — two lipsticks and an eyeliner pack — which, in a first for H&M, is certified by The Vegan Society.

Peta corporate responsibi­lity manager Laura Shields says its work is accomplish­ed by forming positive relationsh­ips with companies such as H&M as it strives to end the use of animal-derived materials.

“We’re thrilled to partner with H&M on a collection that features fabulous vegan designs that are kinder to the planet and to the animals who live on it.”

slizta@mediaprima.com.my

 ?? ?? The children’s collection comes in splashes of colours.
British personalit­y Alexa Chung in a sweater from the Co-Exist Story collection.
The campaign was photograph­ed at the vegan-run Hillside Animal Sanctuary in Norfolk, one of the United Kingdom’s largest animal sanctuarie­s for rescued farm animals.
An asymmetric­al dress with off-white puffer jacket.
The collection includes lipstick and lipliner certified by The Vegan Society.
The children’s collection comes in splashes of colours. British personalit­y Alexa Chung in a sweater from the Co-Exist Story collection. The campaign was photograph­ed at the vegan-run Hillside Animal Sanctuary in Norfolk, one of the United Kingdom’s largest animal sanctuarie­s for rescued farm animals. An asymmetric­al dress with off-white puffer jacket. The collection includes lipstick and lipliner certified by The Vegan Society.

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