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stella mccartney stakes her claim as the most sustainable fashion house

In an emotional SS20 show, the designer drew on almost two decades of eco innovation.

by Jack Sunnucks
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Oct 1 2019, 3:37pm

It was hard to know what to focus on when entering the Stella McCartney show — the timeline of the brand’s move towards sustainability left on your seat, or the videos of animals having sex projected on the walls? Obviously, the animals won out at first, it’s quite hard to focus on much with two gigantic ostriches shagging behind your head. Once the monkeys in embrace had been full registered, however, it was the fantastic show, and the message that accompanied it, that stayed with you. “At Stella McCartney, we challenge the fashion industry every day to be better, questioning things as they are and driving change,” the notes said. “Here are just a few of the things we do at Stella McCartney to have a more positive impact and challenge the status quo.”

These challenges included no leather or furs since day one, using organic cotton from 2008, and a commitment to going plastic free, among a host of other things. Sure, lots of brands have initiative, but who other than Stella, at this level, is so committed to having a sustainable business? The designer even provided an exhaustive list of all the small, less flashy ways in which she’s been trying to steer the company in a more ethical direction, from going angora free to not using glue in their sneakers.

The clothes themselves played upon her obsession with relaxed tailoring and easy-to-wear dresses, with stripes, scalloped edges, and volume blurring where the person stopped and the environment around them began. The designer’s brilliance has always been hiding her serious message, Trojan horse style, within chic and sexy clothing. The color scheme of camel and beige was shot through with vivid blues and greens, like the desert meeting a tropical sea.

“I invite you all to join me in this fight, feeling encouraged and hopeful, fearless – because we can build a better future together.” Maybe, in Stella McCartney (and a host of other young designers who share her vision), there’s a less harmful future for the fashion industry.

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This article originally appeared on i-D UK.

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