Fashion is no longer a symbol of elegance, style and composure. It now represents waste, pollution, destruction, and poverty. In other words, "fashion" has become a dirty word, and the media--mainly television and magazines--has contributed to the situation.
But you don't have to take anyone's word for it. It's sufficient to look at the barrage of books that have been published about it, which touch upon every aspect of the fashion industry. There's The Dirty Side of the Garment Industry by Nikolay Anguelov, Overdressed by Elizabeth L. Cline, and Slave to Fashion by Safia Minney, just to name a few.
These and many other books examine corporate greed, human rights abuses, and even droughts caused by the cotton industry. It has been reported that the volume of water needed to make a pair of jeans and a shirt reaches up to 20,000 liters. It has also been documented that the fashion industry consumes more energy than the aviation and shipping industries combined.
And this is without considering the high level of contamination caused by the harmful chemicals used by the fashion industry to produce polyester, which are later released into the environment. Also worth considering is the pollution caused by the large number of incinerators used to burn the mountains of unused, unsold, and discarded clothes around the world.
The True Cost, a 2015 TV documentary from Andrew Morgan, which featured Livia Giuggioli, showed that although the clothing industry is the second largest polluter after agriculture, most consumers do not think of clothes as a source of environmental damage. Italian-born Giuggioli, a producer and social advocate, is the wife of actor Colin Firth. She co-founded EcoAge, an environmental and social justice group with bases in London and Milan. She is also the founder of Green Carpet Challenge, a sustainable fashion initiative that is often promoted on red carpets.
But Giuggioli's homeland--Italy--is not spared in these books denouncing the dangers that the fashion industry poses to the planet. "The coveted 'Made in Italy' label," states the blurb for the book Tight Knit, "calls to mind...