By Dana Thomas ()
An investigation into the damage wrought by the massive clothing industry—and the grassroots, global movement fighting to reform it by reclaiming traditional means of production and launching cutting edge, sustainable technologies What should I wear? It’s one of the few questions we ask ourselves every day. More than ever, we are told it should be something new. In this era of fast fashion, the clothing industry produces 80 billion new garments every year and employs every sixth person on earth. Historically, the garment trade has exploited labor, the environment, and intellectual property—and that fashion nightmare has compounded exponentially in the last two decades. We are in dire need of an entirely new, human-scale model that relies on conscientious production and new technology. To find that future, bestselling fashion journalist Dana Thomas meets the makers around the world who are finding high and low tech ways to produce better Fashion. FASHIONOPOLIS is first a story of capitalist excess. Thomas travels the world to survey the damage wrought by a globalized, profit-hungry supply chain: sweatshop labor, ecological degradation, overconsumption, waste, and creative exhaustion. But Thomas also finds renewal in a host of developments, such as experiments in locally-sourced and made clothes, rethought retailing, technological innovation, and reshored and small-batch manufacturing. From Stella McCartney and Levi’s to Moda Operandi and Rent the Runway, Thomas highlights the companies big and small that are leading the way to a sustainable production model. Whether or not a garment is ready to wear is a much more complex and vital question than we ever imagined.
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