F4TE Week, Fashion 4 the Earth, is a week-long event series in October dedicated to introducing our audience to sustainable brands while educating them about sustainable production and consumption. For five days we will center on different themes related to sustainability and fashion.
During FS2020, we held a series of events focused on sustainability in the days leading up to the show, the largest being a speaker panel of sustainable fashion experts that attracted over 150 guests. Additionally, we hosted a clothing swap where 64kg of clothing was swapped and set up a pop-up shop featuring 10+ sustainable brands. These initiatives attracted a great deal of interest throughout the St Andrews community; their success has led us to launch F4TE Week.
The fashion industry currently depends on the exploitation of the planet. As over 1 billion items of clothing are produced annually, the industry is the second-largest polluter of water globally and emits 10% of global carbon emissions. Every second, the equivalent of one garbage truck of textiles is landfilled or burned and the textile industry emits over 1.2 billion tonnes of CO2, outweighing the emissions of flights and international shipping combined. In an effort to minimize our environmental impact we seek to integrate sustainability into the entire production of the show from sponsors to eco-friendly decorations to committee practices. In the past year, FS has introduced the Sustainable Fashion Program where we outlined how we plan to achieve our sustainability goals. We pledged that a minimum of 20% of the FS2020 collections showcased would be created using sustainable practices such as zero-waste, upcycling, or reconstruction. We surpassed that goal with 36% (9 of our 25 collections) of the designers meeting these standards in our show and we plan to exceed that in 2021. Our goal is to emphasize that sustainability is not a trend, but a phenomenon that must be increasingly incorporated into all facets of our lives. We believe that FS can be used as a platform to both educate our audience on why sustainability is important and promote sustainable brand alternatives.
Our F4TE Week speaker series will feature multiple lessons from prominent figures in sustainable fashion to gain perspective and firsthand knowledge through 5-10 minute video segments. This will come together at the end of the week in two live virtual speaker panels, touching on relevant parts of each day, allowing for participation from the audience and between speakers.
Our first all virtual F4TE Zine will follow, committed to promoting timeless and youthful sustainable brands that fall into the categories of organic, upcycled, recycled, or tech. Our models were shot in clothing designed by our partnered brands and the Zine will feature these photos, the brand’s information, their sustainability mission, and an attached link directing customers to respective websites to purchase items. This Zine is our exemplification of the future of the marketplace and adaptation to the digital and virtual space as technology begins to take on a bigger role in fashion, and follows our Tuesday theme of The Future of Fashion Week: Digital Technology & Upcycling. Check out the calendar below and tune in for our speakers this week as we explore the world of sustainable fashion.