Clothes Fashion

7 Cool, Conscious Collaborations

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By Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi

What’s better than an eco-friendly company? We’d say one that partners with a celebrity to spread the word about sustainability.

Lately, there have been more celebs than ever willing to sign up to collaborate with established brands to help bring greener products to consumers. Whether they include running shoes, suits or even dresses made from rubbish, Eluxe lauds any creative teamwork that helps make the world a less polluted place.

Here’s our pick of the 7 coolest conscious collaborations from around the world.

1. Will.i.am and Coke

This unlikely partnership produced EKOCYCLE, a venture trying to inspire new things made in part from recycled materials and ” to make more sustainable living cool”.

According to their website, the EKOCYCLE brand initiative supports recycling by helping consumers recognize that items they consider waste today may be a part of a lifestyle product they can use tomorrow. With a dedication to supporting a more sustainable environment, EKOCYCLE  will identify products, such as disposable cans and bottles, that can be repurposed into recycled content for fashionable and valuable lifestyle products. It will also encourage demand and use of recycled materials, and reinforce the importance of recycling finished products.

So far, suits made from plastic bottles seem to be the biggest stand-out product from this partnership, but who knows what the future will bring?

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2. Freedom of Animals and PETA

Leather and exotic animal skins don’t have to be synonymous with luxury anymore–and the partnership between Freedom of Animals and PETA proves it. Many have dubbed the New York based label Freedom of Animals the “Celine of vegan fashion,” and their work with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has resulted in two limited-edition carryalls in support of the animal-rights group’s lifesaving work. We’re sure these will be popular with FOA fans Sara Jessica Parker and Anne Hathaway, as well as at the Eluxe office!

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3. Giambattista Valli with Cire Trudon

Cire Trudon, the world’s oldest and possibly most eco-friendly candle maker, and Italian design superstar Giambattista Valli have come up with the creation of two clean-burning candles. One is called Positano, and includes notes of Neroli, gardenia, orange blossom, tuberose and lily that all evoke the Italian holiday spot. The other is an even more exotic blend called Rose Poivrée featuring lily of the valley, tangerine, rose and amber notes. Housed in clear glass jar with a black label, packed in  a pink box, each 270-gram candle will sell in France for 70 euros, and would delight anyone as a classic Christmas gift.

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4. Orsola de Castro with Nespresso

Frankly, Nespresso is an ecological disaster: whereas traditional espresso requires nothing but a scoop and a machine, Nespresso has managed to create a landfill nightmare with their capsules. But eco-advocate Orsola de Castro came up with a creative solution about what to do with this waste. The designer and Eco-Maven has created a fashionable masterpiece crafted from Premium coffee brand Nespresso capsules. This couture dress brings a whole new meaning to the phrase ‘capsule wardrobe’! Although this is a genius piece of work that shows how rubbish can be recycled creatively, we’d like to stress the obvious: Nespresso shouldn’t be creating that rubbish in the first place.

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5. Orla Keily with People Tree

The fair trade fashion pioneer and online garment retailer, People Tree, collaborated with designer Orla Keily in the name of Fair Trade. As usual with Keily’s work, vintage allure rules, but this time it’s all in the the name of sustainable and fair trade fashion. We’re particularly fond of the flattering cuts, as well as the splashy, neo-modernist prints.

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6. Diesel with EDUN

Diesel and EDUN collaboration engages a global audience with the creative passion of its founders, to raise awareness of the creative opportunities in Africa and build sustainable trade with the continent through fashion. It all began back in January 2012,  when Diesel founder Renzo Rosso and EDUN founders Ali Hewson and Bono travelled to Uganda and Mali. The experience encouraged them to join forces to further apparel trade and development in Africa under the name Diesel+EDUN. Their most recent collection is inspired by the deep blue sky and dark nights of the African desert, treated and shimmer-coated denim: the garment theme is a reinterpretation of the four-pocket jean of the 1970s popular on the streets of South Africa.

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7. Lily Cole and Veja

“I approached it more like an art project,” describes Cole of her collaboration with shoe brand Veja. “I wanted to make a subtle reference to how all animals are vulnerable.” As a result, the model added prints of rainforest creatures to the trainers she made in collaboration with Vega: dragonflies, butterflies, birds and flowers decorate these pretty shoes, which not only look good, but help  small Brazilian producers make a decent living: Veja’s employees are organised into organic cotton and wild rubber cooperatives. But wait–there’s even more eco-goodness to this partnership: for each pair of the trainers bought, £10 will be donated to Sky Rainforest Rescue.

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