Fashionista inspiring fashion industry to think ‘Circular’
July 25, 2016
Myriam Laroche is the founder and president of Eco Fashion Week, Vancouver’s much-heralded event in its eleventh year. A former Montrealer, Laroche has gained an international reputation as a passionate, tireless advocate for sustainability in the fashion and textiles industry.
Eco Fashion Week (EFW) is dedicated to “informing and inspiring the fashion-conscious and sustainable-minded alike, in a way that harmonizes beauty and the environment,” says Laroche. Supported by an innovative group of artists, designers, producers, big thinkers and visionaries, the event boasts a who’s who of celebrities, fashion industry VIPs, buyers, designers, stylists, photographers, influential style bloggers and media representatives. “People believe in our vision and we are committed to to producing a ‘feel good’ event versus only a ‘look good’ event.”
Although the world clothing and textile industry generates more than a trillion dollars a year in revenue, it also contributes to 5 percent of all waste going to landfill, with 10.5 million tons of clothing going to the dump annually in the U.S. alone. But 95 percent of these materials could be given a second life, whether re-worn via charity and consignment stores, converted into other products such as industrial cleaning cloths, or converted to valuable uses as textile fibres or even energy.
This circular economy approach, keeping materials in circulation and re-engineering business models to deliver ‘services’ rather than simply products, would significantly reduce the amount of waste going to landfill, but EFW’s impact goes beyond this and also looks at issues of pesticide and toxic chemical use, high water consumption and more.