Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Looolo textiles: eco-friendly fashion

It seems that environmental awareness is in fashion these days. Literally.

From EDUN, the recently launched fair-trade-produced hemp and organic cotton clothing line that is the brainchild of U2's Bono, his wife Ali Hewson and designer Rogan Gregory, to the organic cotton Sustainable Edition tees and undies from American Apparel, to the colorful striped organic skirts and dresses by designer Aimee Grubel, to the sustainable - yet - stylish shoes of Terra Plana to the eco-friendly knits by Canadian company LoooLo Textiles, it seems that designers are putting their money - and fabric - where their mouths are when it comes to the environment.

For LoooLo Textiles designer Joanna Notkin, her light bulb moment came while working as a jewelry designer for large fashion companies like Aldo Shoes and Esprit in the late 1990s.

"I [was making] flowery, very colorful stuff and it was flying off the shelves," said the Toronto-based Notkin.

"But I realized that within a year or two or three, all this sort of lower-end, inexpensive costume jewelry I was designing might have some part that broke off or the thing would have gone out of style, and it would end up in some landfill somewhere.

That weighed really heavily on me as a designer, so I thought, I have to make a choice here: Either not be a designer or find a different way


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