How Indian Fashion Designers are stepping towards ‘Green Wardrobe’

Have you ever wondered where your outfits come from? Are they made in factories or sweatshops? Indian designers are joining the movement offering clothing that is gentle on the skin as well as the environment!

There is an abundance of culture to be discovered from nature as it is a perfect way to recharge one’s soul and ease the mind. The most important part of deriving something from nature or getting nature’s inspiration is not just to view it, but to pay more attention and incorporate the elements into the fabric.

Many of the clothes we wear today are non-biodegradable, which means they don’t break down easily and are very difficult to dispose of. There are distinctions drawn made from ‘organic cotton’ and ‘organic garments’. This means that the cotton used has been produced without harmful chemicals, pesticides or toxic dyes.

Fashion is made of trends that spring and disappear along time and is all about appearance which fashion designers always look for inspiration to kindle their creativity. Attractive colors, shapes, textures, and patterns are all around in nature. Taking inspiration from nature gives a fresh perspective on design and is an artwork in itself.

Lakmé Fashion Week introduces the Green Wardrobe initiative.

Eco-sustainability is taking the fashion world by storm, and eight Indian designers recently jumped onto the bandwagon when they showcased their works at the Green Wardrobe fashion show last night. ‘A Lakme Fashion Week initiative’, the show featured works by eight designers and labels – Anita Dongre, Ujjawal Dubey, Anavila Misra, p.e.l.l.a, 11.11, Karishma Shahani, Doodlage and Péro by Aneeth Arora. The collections are believed to be ecologically sensitive because of the eco-friendly materials used to make them.

The glittering night also saw the appearance of Bollywood celebrities Kajol and Siddharth Malhotra, who showed up to advocate the need for environmental sustainability.

Being one of the country’s most successful industry events, dedicated an entire day to up cycling and sustainability. The Artisans’ Centre “Reincarnations Show” turned the spotlight on new and emerging brands—Jambudweep was a spectacle of products crafted from non-hazardous industrial waste while the Wandering Whites label showcased jewellery made from a mix of stones, brass, industrial waste and scrap. The brand ‘I Was a Sari’ also showcased a variety of designs all made from recycled saris.

Nature and Fashion by Jatin Kochar:

The Delhi based designer Jatin Kochar cheers that he just loves the whole idea of getting involved with nature. He says, “Connecting with nature is great source of inspiration for me”. The designer believes that it is very important to be a part of nature. He quotes, “Honestly speaking, I am born and brought up in an urban environment. Furthermore my current lifestyle also does not have any interaction with nature, and is full of noise and pollution. I spend more time to just observe nature, which I do mostly in summer. I believe that both heart and soul will be nourished. And for this, one has to connect with nature.”

Creativity supported by nature’s inspiration:

Materials made with an inspiration drawn from nature makes alluring designs. Jatin’s designs are an amalgamation of ethnic and chic. He says, “90% of my designs are made out of white fabrics. We can add lot of texture.” He motivates designers to break the norms and try new patterns apart from the standard ones. “Now for example, I am working with evening wear made out of piqu fabrics that are meant for mens’ t-shirts collared t-shirts for golf. The wearer should give life to the dress. ”

Creativity supported by nature’s inspiration helps a fashion designer to excel. Jatin quotes his own experience saying, “Possibilities, and ideas are absolutely endless. Be it a color, pattern, texture; anything. If I am locked in a closed circuit, I will run out of ideas. Just by looking at a picture, I get a million ideas.”

Colors inspired from nature:

Specific styles, designs, and patterns resonate the personal style of the designer. Citrus can be a great source of inspiration for designers smitten with colors. Bold green, yellow, makes a captivating citrus print top. Even a chopped of wood at the sidewalk can give an inspiration for a camel suede coat.

The designer, who is praised as India’s pride for fashion shares his secret and interesting aspiration. “The entire fashion industry makes a lot of noise about color. With all my experience I accept that colors have always been achieving. I am not a big color person, but for the coming season I just want to do only colors. Solid colors, bright yellow, beautiful red, green and blue. Every color does signify something. Wear colors of nature and you will never go out of fashion.”

Meghna Nayak, who runs the upcycling label LataSita in Kolkata, thinks that it is important for consumers to know where their clothes come from. Citing the #whomademyclothes campaign, she says, “A clear supply chain is the hallmark of ethical fashion.” According to her, an assembly-line approach to manufacturing clothes makes it impossible to track those behind the garment and also helps brands elude questions of responsible productions.

As distressing stories of dwindling craft clusters come into the news, design labels are coming to the aid of their karigars. Labels like No Nasties, Khara Kapas, Manala Apparel and Fair Konnect are among those that eschew factory and sweatshop cultures in favour of equal pay and better working conditions for their artisans.

For centuries, nature had been a great source of inspiration for artists. In contemporary times, it is not just enough to celebrate nature. Creativity of the fashion designers, with appropriate patterns and color choices brings clothes with timeless elegance, and customers to marvel at the beauty of nature.

The inspiration that nature provides to fashion industry is a solid proof that Mother Nature is indeed fashion industry’s greatest muse.


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