This blog was originally based on a course ran by Professor Nick Gray of the Trinity Centre for the Environment at Trinity College Dublin who also wrote a textbook for the module Facing up to global warming: What is going on and what you can do about it. Now working as an independent consultant, Nick continues to work in the area of environmental sustainability and looking at ways of making a difference without recriminations or guilt. Saving the planet is all about living sustainably.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Mary Portas: The New Face of Sustainable Clothing?

Mary Portas
Flicking through the channels on a Thursday evening, I end up on channel 4 and come across something that was in my opinion purely inspiring. Mary Portas, a woman who is London’s leading retail marketing consultant, has decided to try and make an underwear line that is purely British. This entails sourcing the lace from Nottingham, hiring eight people from Middleton and making them work in a factory that was closed due to the outsourcing of its business in the 1990’s.Although this programme is most likely designed to highlight the fact that the movement of clothing industries from Britain to cheaper countries had detrimental affects to numerous British communities, I saw something more.
This woman was trying to prove that the once considered ‘cheap’ clothing no longer exists. Countries such as India, China and Bangladesh were once considered to be the places to bring your business if one wished to keep up with the market that was competing for the cheapest clothing. Now, due to the ever increasing price of oil, and the fact that the recession has made consumers look for quality over quantity, Mary has found the niche in the market that may escalate to more than the sourcing sustainable British clothing.
If we were to embrace the clothing that was made in a factory no further than a short truck journey, the amount of carbon dioxide and oil we would be saving would be immense. I believe that this may be the way to a new era of sustainable clothing, and ensuring we live within our means. Link

Anna Connell

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