The critique of “fast fashion” is quite clear— a regime that says pile it high, sell it cheap and hang the consequences. On the other hand, the ethical fashion industry has it’s own share of criticisms: from associations with gaudy grandma aesthetics, to an all too familiar Western Savior Complex in every marketing campaign.


The critique of “fast fashion” is quite clear— pile it high, sell it cheap and hang the consequences.

On the other hand, the ethical fashion industry has it’s own share of criticisms: from an association with gaudy grandma aesthetics, to a familiar Western Savior Complex in every marketing campaign.

Most of these issues come to light with more immersion in the industry; critique comes with understanding— even I was quick to applaud all brands that seemed to aid another: Do it for the children! Do it for the women! Yet, I’ve grown more aware with time.

Of course, this is not to undermine the importance of ethical fashion/holistic business models at large. Yet, it's tough to deny the need to address the narratives of artisans in a way that does not perpetuate poverty porn, or a rhetoric that runs solely on pathos to fuel sales— ethical fashion is, after all, both parts social action coupled with personal expression.

And that brings me to today’s feature: Victoria Road.

Apart from aesthetic appeal, Victoria Road maintains a focus on artisans, and straying away from the savior mentality. In a recent article reflecting on the lessons I learned during my field study in La Paz, one important lesson was recognizing that the community you work with knows exactly what they need.

Victoria Road’s co-founders Megan and Shannon touched on their approach with working with artisans in a recent interview on the StyleWise blog: “They start with a lot, we just want to help them build with it. It’s so important for me to listen, to just be quiet, and the thing that enables us to do that – and I think where we feel really strongly – is having local people work with local people.

"THEY START WITH ALOT; 

WE JUST WANT TO HELP 

THEM BUILD WITH IT." 

Now let's talk aesthetics— can't ignore this factor of the ethical fashion equation. I think a keen focus on the aesthetics of ethical fashion brands integral to its rise in mainstream fashion culture; brands that are appealing in addition their ethics.

Of course, that’s always relative to the individual. For me, I can’t deny the match made in sartorial heaven between this Natalia Naveed dress coupled and Shalimar Collection Earcuff.


Enjoy, dear readers!

CREATIVE DIRECTION AND POST PROCESSING
Aditi Mayer
PHOTOGRAPHY ASSISTANCE
Zehra Abbas
WARDROBE
MODEL
Aditi Mayer

FTC: This post was sponsored by Victoria Road. All content and opinions are my own.



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