By Chere Di Boscio
While Vivienne Westwood and Stella McCartney remain the two most known ‘eco-friendly’ designers in the UK, their production practices are, in fact, not nearly as green nor as transparent as those of British men’s and women’s wear creator, Christopher Raeburn.
The designer initially started using repurposed military fabric in his collections out of necessity–it was cheaper, he said, to use existing fabric, rather than buying new. But since then, he’s loved the draped effect and subtle sheen of repurposed parachute fabric so much, he’s used it in subsequent collections often.
He’s also experimented with reversible garments in his Inverted collection, extending the life of a piece of clothing by doubling its function, and when he showcased menswear in Paris, he received an award from the International Ethical Fashion Forum and support from London’s green fashion Estethica showcase for his sustainable approach to design.
In 2010, Raeburn won mainstream fashion kudos from Topshop when he was awarded NEWGEN sponsorship for both his men’s and women’s collections.
Maintaining transparency through his entire production process, Raeburn is now firmly established as being one of the most ethical designers around today. In fact, due to his unflinchingly eco approach to his work, Style.com has declared “it’s not unreasonable to assert that Christopher Ræburn is the single most radical designer working today”.
His Women’s SS14 collection shown in London this week was packed with classic basics such as lightweight dresses and military-inspired coats with patch pockets and drawstring waists. Capes were a big trend on the couture catwalk in Paris last season, and Raeburn presented his take on them too, via cape-embellished coats and hooded dresses in natural tones of putty, stone and sand.
Here’s our selection of what we loved most on the catwalk this season.