NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 3 – As the negative effects of climate change become more obvious each day, society is moving to mitigate its impact.
The fashion sector accounts for 8–10 percent of global emissions since the process of making clothes require a lot of natural resources and produces greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change.
The fashion business is one of several elements that contribute to the effects of climate change.
Different types of fabric used to produce clothing are not environmentally friendly or biodegradable.
Tribal Chic is one of the most well-known fashion events in East Africa, featuring mostly designers from Kenya and other countries in the region, as well as a few from beyond.
This show brings together designers once a year for this unique fashion event with the sole purpose of showcasing concepts that are sustainable and environmentally friendly in an effort to reduce the severe consequences of climate change.
On Saturday, the popular show in Nairobi will hold its 12th event with the topic of sustainable fashion.
There will be a total of 11 local and international designers present at the event.
One of the designers for this year’s show, Iona McCreath from Kikoromeo, says that sustainability is at the company’s foundation and that the fabric they use to create a variety of garments in various styles is obtained from natural sources since it is environmentally benign and biodegradable.
“Consumers are increasingly conscious of the environmental impact associated with their travel and fashion choices and we are focused to be among the influencers on climate change,” she said.
“KikoRomeo’ focuses on creating longevity in garment by use of handmade and hand-dyed fabrics as well as hand carved trims sourced within Africa.”
Sarah, an architect and fashion designer from Iran, asserts that her use of a sustainable but architectural approach to fashion inspired her to take part in the Tribal Chic event because the theme is relevant to what she does.
Her firm strives to be a minimal waste brand by using the leftover bits of fabric from other garments and using them to build new collections.
She uses geometrically made motifs like stripes that are vertical, others diagonal, and converse.
“Our approach to sustainable fashion is we are trying to be a low waste company in that we use the left overs fabric from other collections to use to make new collections instead of throwing them away,” she said.
“We also make necklaces made of waste papers to try and make materials and rhings that friendly to the environment and they can serve the person for a long time.”
Mariam Kembo, a Kenyan fashion designer with a company called “Mariam Kotour” situated in Mombasa, decided to become an advocate for climate change by guaranteeing that every piece in her collection is made of eco-friendly cotton fabric.
She utilizes locally sourced cotton with a hand-block print from Mombasa and coconut buttons manufactured in Bombolulu, a city where persons with disabilities are given economic opportunities to support themselves.
“Fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world currently and I chose this way because I want to live my footprint the eco-way,” she stated
“We don’t want to leave the world in a bad way, we are just trying to do our part where we can do something good for our environment and the world.”
Mariam believes that comfort and durability are important to her consumers because with every collection she creates, she makes sure the wearer is comfortable and that the fabric will last as long as they desire.
Yegoala Prity, a designer for a lifestyle firm, claims that the company creates clothing using eco-friendly leftover textiles like cotton, linen, and silk.
She continues by expressing her love for creating collections with no waste and turning them into new ones.
“All the fabrics here are made from the leftovers which are ecofriendly and my main focus is zero waste and I design the hand designs on the left fabric and reinvent it and make it have a better look for someone to put on,” she said.
Sustainability, according to Michael Mwangi, general manager of the Tribe hotel, which will host the Tribe Chic fashion show, is the way of the world today.
Consumers are also becoming more aware of how sustainable the products they buy are for the environment.
He continued by saying that as a business, they are thrilled to host a showcase of sustainable fashion designers, who will present their lines of clothing and jewelry that have been made sustainably, paying special attention to how they will affect the community and the environment.
“As Tribe, this year we are excited to host a showcase of sustainable fashion designers featuring their collections of clothes and jewelry created responsibly and with particular attention to the impact on community and climate,” he said.
“These conscious pieces are made from natural, eco-friendly and sustainable material.”
According to the designers’ problems on their route to ensuring sustainability in fashion is that people do not realize the true significance of eco-friendly fabrics or materials to the environment.
They continued by saying that they find it to be such a dull form of clothing and that they don’t really embrace it as much as they do their best to mitigate the consequences of climate change on society.
They urge people to become more aware of the importance of using eco-friendly materials and collections as a method to lessen the severe consequences of climate change on the planet.