I love New Zealand designer fashion and especially emerging designer fashion. Fashion is a way of expressing who you are as a person, it’s about being yourself. The fashion designers of New Zealand are so incredibly talented and the emerging designers especially have a superpower. This superpower is that they do not mass produce clothing to clog up our planet. Fashion by New Zealand designers is designed to sit in your wardrobe, collector items, clothing that is so unique that it gets passed down from generation to generation, the way our grandparents valued fashion. They even concern themselves with the need to address the ethics of fabric production. How many people know in this world that the Indian cotton farmers who mass produce cotton for the fast fashion industry get paid less than $10 a month. How many of those people who purchase those $5 – $10 t-shirts then ask “is the person who produced the cotton for this t-shirt still alive”? The cotton farmers of India have the highest suicide rates in the world, more than 270,000 have taken their lives since 1995 and every year it grows like the fast-fashion world. The whole story behind the pesticides that the India cotton farmers are required to use is so crazy, why do you allow this to happen fast fashion industry? The world has become so greedy, obsessed with money and power that people are losing their conscience. There is a need to write about this because I believe our views in regard to climate change and sustainability especially with regards to fashion are becoming flawed. More and more I hear people saying “keep your fossil in the ground” or “buy recycled clothing”. These comments have made me angry for a while but a few months back I read a comment by one of my favorite actors. This comment didn’t originate from him but he is smart enough to acknowledge that it is a good one and it was worth repeating.
“ The idea that sustainability needs to sacrifice the quality of life is a flawed one. It’s a design challenge, a challenge to build something that will increase the quality of life for all of those around it.”
Originated: Bjarke Ingels – Architect Spoken by Nikolaj Coster-Waldau
Our Sustainable Design Challenge
Are we New Zealand challenging our sustainable design needs in a way that will increase the quality of life of all of those around us? What would happen to our emerging and New Zealand Fashion industry if we do not embrace those with huge sustainable presents? It would no longer exist, people would not have jobs and the mental health struggles of this country go up and up. When people do not have jobs and you start to take away what they are good at the mental health struggles to start to rise. I know what it’s like to be in a job that you love and have that ripped away from you, it breaks you. Our challenge as a human race is to create more inspiring sustainable ideas and concepts as well as making sure we keep people feeling valued.
The notion has one of the largest collections of sustainable fashion in New Zealand. We put thought into it and love to connect with those designers who have a story. Stories are the most powerful thing in the world, not money nor flags, stories. So let’s celebrate some extraordinary sustainable stories from the likes of Courtney Pellow from Auckland, New Zealand, and Better World Fashion all the way from Denmark.
Standard Issue – New Zealand
Standard Issue is our sustainable giants of New Zealand. Standard Issue has exceptional quality, and customers including myself talk about the lifespan of a Standard Issue garment, they last. Zero-waste, garments are all stitched from nothing. Garments patterns are programmed into the knit machines, so only what is required is used to make the garment supper smart, and so sustainable. Made in New Zealand.
Better World Fashion – Denmark
These amazing fashion designers produce new leather jackets made from used leather. With the lining of recycled plastic and buttons of re-melted metal. Sounds so crazy? No way sounds awesome!!! All of Better World jackets are 98% reuse and 100% unique. Pure Danish design, responsibly produced in Poland. Very clever people from the other side of the world. The world’s most sustainable leather jackets here first to New Zealand at notionfashion.co.nz
Courtney Pellow – New Zealand
Absolute talent for creative design and upcycling. From the stunning wool blankets created into fabulous bush shirts to the upcycling of gumboot socks into the most amazingly beautiful gumboot pants. Creativity is mind-blowing and respect for sustainability outstanding. Courtney Pellow is worn by Gigi Hadid’s and Stan Walker and sold by Notion. Made in New Zealand.
GEO J OFFICIAL – New Zealand
An extremely talented young lady with huge resilience. Georgia’s designs are stunning glam. All of the offcuts from her fabulous fur coats turned into amazing baby fur coats. Constantly thinking of how she can utilize every leftover piece of fabric cut so there is no wastage. GEO J OFFICIAL has taken her designs to Milan, New York, and New Zealand Fashion Week.
Make A Difference
We have connected with our amazing New Zealand designers through New Zealand fashion week, NZFW recognizes the designers making a sustainable difference to our planet. The fashion world is changing. New Zealand let’s be the leaders and start the change.
At Notion, we even went as far as designing sustainable packaging in the way of rock paper bags. Our Notion bags are 90% rock and 10% paper. We went for this option because my thinking was with the stopping and reduction of plastic in New Zealand we would start to put increased pressure on paper supplies, this is just my way of thinking, I am not scared to think outside the box and think a little differently.
Thanks for the incredible support, this Chocolate Queen has had on the Notion journey so far. Building a business while battling mental illness is a challenge but we have values and we continue to fight for these values. A special thanks to my Rainbow family who are always there to help pull me through the mud when I get a little stuck and struggle to move!!! We keep moving for you! The people who support you and travel with you on the bus when the limo is broken, they are your rainbow connection, they are the kinda people who have got your back always. They will not be forgotten. None of us are perfect at doing the right thing for climate change but we have to try, try to make a difference and we will absolutely be far more professional than the big companies of this world who are only consumed with profit.
“Those consumed with profit live for today, those that concerned with people and planet live for tomorrow”.
M xx Chocolate Queen