On Wednesday the 24th of April 2013 the Rana Plaza building collapsed killing 1130 people, a large percentage of these deaths were female fashion factory workers unaware of the dangerous conditions of the building they worked in. Fashion Revolution is an organisation that believes in an industry that values people, the environment, creativity and profit in equal measure. They aim to achieve this by working together to gain transparency within an industry that is often enigmatic and unwilling to share what goes on behind the manufacturing of our garments.
The UoG Fashion degree students have strong opinions about sustainable and ethical fashion. We believe our generation need to do all we can to promote a more ethical industry that we intend to work in in the future. I personally believe that it is our responsibility as fashion students to lead the way in raising awareness of disasters such as the Rana Plaza collapse and not hide the damage the fashion industry can cause to so many individuals.
It is easy for us as a nation of fast fashion consumers to forget the skill and craftsmanship that goes into the making of our garments. I know that personally I often don’t consider the individual who has made my clothes, they are merely an everyday necessity that I find a thrill in purchasing at a cheap price. My first year as a fashion student has taught me to truly appreciate the time and craftsmanship that is involved in the making of a single garment.
The 18th- 24th of April has been named Fashion Revolution week, it is an important week to remember those who lost their lives on the anniversary of the Rana Plaza collapse. I decided that this was a brilliant opportunity to raise awareness as a course. I reviewed the campaigns from last year’s fashion revolution week and decided that as a group we should turn our clothes inside out and show our labels. Following this we did what we do best and posted it all over social media in order to reach as many people as we could. To our excitement the response that came following our sharing of the photo on social media was incredible, the Fashion Revolution team retweeted our photo and it has now been viewed by over 2,500 people.
As part of my mini fashion campaign I asked my fellow course mates: “Why is Fashion Revolution important to you?”
“It’s important to me to know where my clothes come from and WHO MADE MY CLOTHES! I think workers’ rights in developing countries are just as important as ours here in the UK”
“Fashion Revolution is important to me because it is important to question where our clothes are from and who made them! Looking at photographs of terrible working conditions especially in the Rana Plaza made me question why I pay more for something I wear a few times when I should be investing in garments, or making my own high quality garments that I can keep forever!”
“Fashion Revolution is important to me because I want everyone to care and demand better for the people who make our clothes. I hope that one-day fashion can be made in a safe, clean and beautiful way”
-Lowri Mai Isaac
Although we may not be able to change the fashion industry overnight I believe that our small effort to raise awareness for a more ethical fashion industry can make a big difference. Most importantly to the lives of the women in LEDC’s who work tirelessly for long hours to make our clothes and receive a tiny wage for their hard labour. We need to make their voices heard… We need to demand a Fashion Revolution!
“Small acts when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world” -Howard Zinn
By Abigail Farquhar
Level 4 BA Fashion Design Student