Today’s society tends to push us towards consuming at an ever faster rate before. That’s quite a general statement, although it is particularly true for the Fashion industry.
Thanks to mass production and cheap labour, we can afford to simply discard clothes we no longer want to wear, and replace them instantly with minimal impact on our wallets.
As a result, products are designed with ever shorter lifecycle and poorer quality. We call that Fast Fashion.
Fast Fashion’s impact on the planet is huge. The pressure to reduce costs and speed up production time means that environmental corners are very likely to be cut. One of many examples could be the constant and persisting use of cheap and toxic textile dyes. The fashion industry is the second largest polluter of clean water globally, just after agriculture. To get a better sense of the scale of the issue, we can recommend the movie “The River Blue” which depicts it in a shocking yet very interesting way.
And if only it was only about clean water pollution: the fashion industry is also responsible for about 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions, producing 5 times more CO2 than the aviation industry and second only to the oil sector !
80% of people working in fashion production are women
But Fast fashion is not only affecting the environment: it’s also affecting the live of many people all around the world. 80% of people working in fashion production are women, and have often been found to be working in dangerous environments, for low wages and without basic human rights.
There was a before and an after Rana Plaza
In 2013 the world got a reality check on the situation when the Rana Plaza clothing manufacturing complex in Bangladesh collapsed, killing over 1,000 workers. Many say there was a before and after Rana Plaza: following this tragic event, numerous and organisations got voice to call out big brands and push them to be more transparent and responsible about their production process. This plight is well highlighted in the documentary The True Cost by Andrew Morgan.
Slow fashion is the alternative we chose to pursue
We believe that we need to change the system by making fashion more circular and eliminating the concept of waste. We don’t want to be part of the problem and we hope you neither. We want to be part of the solution and to help you finding other alternatives.
Slow fashion is the alternative we chose to pursue. For us it is all about designing, producing, consuming and living better.
” WE LOVE FASHION BUT ALSO: PEOPLE, OUR BEAUTIFUL PLANET AND WE VALUE CRAFTSMANSHIP “
KNOW MORE ABOUT OUR values AND HOW WE WORK FOR THEM
The first step of the creation process is the Design. This is a key step because that’s when the designer decides of the lifecycle of the product; how it is going to look like, potentially what it will be made of, and how it is going to be used and by whom.
From a slow fashion perspective this is when you have the opportunity to design it to last in time vs. drive short term sales by surfing on the current micro trend,
At Lorena Villegas we want to make them last as much as possible.
“Lorena Villegas designs timeless pieces that you can wear all the year long and don’t get rapidly outdated. Lorena Villegas is always creating new pieces and integrating them in different “collection capsules” which will remain on the shop for a long period of time. Nonetheless, we must admit that the pressure is definitely there to make a statement strong enough so it can actually last in time in opposition to becoming outdated after one season!”
All our clothes are made in Europe from deadstock fabrics, which are the left over fabrics of other fashion houses who overestimated their needs. Traditionally, brands would hold on to their excess fabrics for a few seasons and then send them to the landfills. We buy these deadstock fabrics from resellers before they are thrown away and we turn them into beautiful clothes for your wardrobe.
Producing new items with deadstock or up-cycled fabrics can be extraordinarily sustainable for a couple of reasons.
Firstly, most of the water required for garment production is actually used to convert raw fiber into workable fabric and during the dye process. Our Up-cycled textiles don’t require more water, we buy finished textiles repurposed for secondary collections, by definition, secondhand. By making use of preexisting fabrics, we are keeping more fabric out of the landfills while giving them a new life.
Secondly, most of the time we buy theses fabrics from the same workshop that is in charge of the production, generating therefore less carbon out of transportation.
Because we use up-cycled fabrics, we rarely find large quantities of any one fabric. That means we are often only able to make a couple of pieces out of the fabric we get. But that’s ok, and we do love it actually: this way we are able to use beautiful fabric while reducing out impact on environment and proposing very limited editions of each design so you can think of you dress a pretty much unique !
We have adopted a slow fashion approach in our production process: a lot of our designs are only available on pre-order to keep a sense of exclusivity, craftsmanship, and to avoid pollution, waste, and overproduction.
For designs available only on pre-order, it will take 2 to 4 days to be ready for you, excluding shipping time. Once it reaches its destination, you’ll have the pleasure to wear the creation you ordered knowing it is somehow unique and especially made for you.
We produce and sell all our clothes in Europe, which avoid making them crossing skies oceans before reaching your closet and therefore limiting the carbon emission associated.
Last but not the least, producing in Europe allows for much more and better control over the production process. This is the best way for us to be able to ensure that all the people involved in the productions are working in good conditions and are fairly paid.
YOU SHOULDN'T HAVE TO CHOOSE BETWEEN STYLE AND ETHICAL FASHION!
To be consistent with all our commitments as a brand, we decided to use biodegradable, carbon negative and compostable mailers to send you our creations. If you throw the bag in the compost with your food scraps, it will be gone in about 6 months! That’s because they don’t contain any polyethylene, the plastic that most mailers are made from. they’re made with corn starch and a blend of two bioplastics, PLA and PBAT, and printed with non-toxic inks. Our supplier, Wastebased, has written a comprehensive guide to ecopackaging that goes into far more depth about what goes into them. Check it out to know more!