From panels on The Circular Consumer to runway presentations by ethical brands, Casper Magazine’s home city showcased the best of the local fashion industry’s commitment to preserving the environment and preventing waste. Here’s our summary of the Australian brands that were presenting the best of sustainable fashion:
The first ever brand to win both MFW’s National Designer Award and the Honourable Mention for Sustainability, COMMAS is a Sydney-based swimwear and resort-wear brand for men. Their classic, minimalist garments are handcrafted in Australia with fabric sourced from family-owned mills across Europe and Japan, while their business model prioritises human rights and working towards net-zero carbon emissions.
Womenswear brand Arnsdorf is a leader in making fashion transparent, with every garment accompanied by information about the origins of the materials used and even the names of individuals involved in making it. The brand also limits how many times they produce each garment to avoid waste and is the first major fashion brand in Australia to have a B-Corp Certification, guaranteeing their good social and environmental practices.
Designed as modern heirlooms, the handcrafted pieces by Kalaurie are durable enough to last a lifetime and beyond, capable of passing through many hands. The pieces are all made to order in the Melbourne studio, and many designs feature old or surplus fabrics and trims that other brands no longer want to use – approaches which are inspired by a strong commitment to eliminating waste.
4. HoMie and Nobody Denim collaborative showcase
This Melbourne Fashion Week, denim brand Nobody Denim handed their factory seconds and faulty samples to streetwear brand HoMie, who created a collection of one-off pieces by upcycling the old material. The one hundred original pieces represent a blend of both organisations’ styles and went up for sale on Nobody Denim’s website, with all profits going towards HoMie’s mission to support young people affected by homelessness or hardship.
Honourable Mention: Fast Fashun magazine
Although not a brand, Fast Fashun is a magazine publishing collages, visual art, creative writing, commentary, and practical information that raises awareness about the negative impacts of fast fashion and encourages people to get involved in more sustainable fashion practices. Launching their latest edition at MFW, attendees were presented with a pile of garments and textiles salvaged from previous fashion weeks and encouraged to create new runway looks, highlighting the joy to be found in Melbourne’s sustainable fashion community.
With a focus on durable garments, ethical production lines, and making use of excess fabric, these local brands are paving the way for a better fashion industry both locally and internationally. As a Melbourne-based publication, Casper Magazine is incredibly proud of the way our city is looking towards the future of fashion.
For more on Australia’s ethical fashion movement, check out our feature on local sustainable fashion app Good On You.