Fashionnovation is on a journey to introduce you with unique, sustainable, rising fashion brands and the masterminds behind them. As a matter of fact, we’ll explore Amber Design House and the mind of its founder. In our today’s exclusive interview, we take the humble opportunity to introduce you with Jana Cuprijanoviča, a Latvian fashion designer, graduated as an organization psychologist, then found her passion for fashion and went all in to serve her customers with her handmade cardigans, creating which is like meditation to her. Today we will listen to her story of building up a brand called Amber Design House to serve her customers around the world with love.
Kazi Purba: We know that Amber Design House is a handmade products company and brand founded by you in Riga, Latvia, near the Baltic sea. Can you tell us something about yourself?
Jana: My name is Jana. I am the creator of Amber Design House. This is my hobby, work, love.
I graduated as an organization psychologist and all the acquired knowledge and work experience is very useful even now, developing my small business.
Jana Cuprijanoviča, the founder of Amber Design House. Photo courtesy: Amber Design House.
Kazi Purba: What’s the story behind Amber Design House? What motivated you to establish that?
Jana: The Amber Design House project started with one cardigan for myself and without really planning anything. I didn’t ever imagine that after a while it would turn into a passionate work. This is my meditation. I can equate knitting to a kind of yoga.
I can thank my daughter Patrisha for encouraging me to develop all these. She said that other people should also see these cardigans and sweaters. I doubted it for a moment, but there was no time to think, because the customers had already appeared and were already waiting for their knitted cardigans. I just had to do it!
One cardigan, two, three… sweaters, home decor, it just happened naturally.
Our cardigans have already traveled to Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, Netherlands and other places in world.
Kazi Purba: That is amazing! Loved the story behind your brand. What’s your product range? What special do you offer to your customers?
Jana: Amber design house produces handmade fashion crocheted and knitted outwear and decors.
Knitted cardigan from Amber Design House. Photo courtesy: Amber Design House.
Our products are distinguished by our hallmark – small natural amber. It is a stone of sun with good and healing energy.
Our most popular product is a knitted cardigan, also highly requested as an additional piece for wedding dresses.
We work only with high quality materials, because the end result is very important for us.
Knitted product with Amber Design House’s logo on it. Photo courtesy: Amber Design House.
Kazi Purba: How much supportive are your customers? What’s your future plan for them?
Jana: All the good words and appreciations from our cool customers just give me a big inspiration. It warms my heart so much and motivates me to do more and more.
I’m thankful to everyone from the bottom of my heart for appreciating, loving and being so supportive!
If you want to know more about Jana Cuprijanoviča’s projects and Amber Design House, please visit:
If you have any initiative like Jana Cuprijanoviča or have to say something to the world, feel free to contact us and get featured in fashionnovation! Our email address: email@example.com
VeNove: The Brand That Makes Comfortable, Stylish and Unique Dresses for the Pregnant Women With Love
Lili: A Sustainable Brand for Upcycled Jewelry
It is a common consideration to believe that the ‘small’ amount of unsound household waste each individual produces, creates such a minimum impact on the world. But if you take into detail there are approximately 7.4 billion people in the world, this number becomes horrible. The amount of unsound waste generated and disposed of, in the United States alone, is measured to be 7.6 billion of tons per year! Most of the wastes that are filling our oceans and landfills are enduring for quite a long time. And what is the saddest part? The fashion industry is one of the most wasteful industries. Undoubtedly, in the last 15 years, this glorious industry has doubled its production, but at the same time, the concept of wearing clothing before it is thrown away has declined by 40%. An average consumer throws away 70 pounds (31.75kgs) of clothing per year! Globally about 13 million tons of textile waste is produced each year. These trends of making waste are not only killing our planet or impacting on public health, but also they are bounding the opportunities for the fashion industry to succeed in the distant future.
The Story of The Rise of The Phoenix- An Invisible Bond with Modern Fashion
According to Greek Mythology, it is said, the glorious ancient bird Phoenix is capable of its rebirth. A Phoenix is said to live only once at a time. When the time comes, unlike any other birds, a Phoenix would die by setting itself on fire, only to produce mysterious ashes. The ashes from where a new Phoenix would be born! Thus, a new and powerful Phoenix regenerated from the silver ashes of its predecessor.
Modern fashion activists can relate to this concept of rebirth and regeneration. The wastes produced from the industry can be depicted as the new definition of ashes and of course, the upcycled creations from these wastes would be our new Phoenix! Nonetheless, the household or textiles wastes can be the opportunity to make new fashion and be the new hope for saving the planet.
10 Fashion Brands to Regenerate New Designs from Waste
Many fashion brands have already been working on waste and designing out of it in an innovative way. Let’s get to know some of these fashion brands and how they challenge waste to create sustainable fashion!
Ecoalf, a fashion brand of Spain produces clothing and accessories from recycled materials. Their main motto is to use a lesser amount of natural resources and utilize high amount of plastic wastes. Hence, they recover nylon waste (fabric scraps, fishing nets from the oceans and carpets), plastic bottles, cotton, coffee grounds and more to create fabrics and products. But its main target is recycling plastic waste collected from the bottom of the oceans. Ecoalf definitely contributes themselves in the production of garments made out of 100% recovered plastic as they claim, “There is no planet B where we can live in.”
Collina Strada is a clothing brand created by Hillary Taymour, whose main concern is sustainable fashion while still keeping their individuality. This brand makes brightly colored dresses with unusual designs from deadstock fabrics. It recycles cotton T-shirts, water bottles and prints on deadstock too. Besides, it works for reducing waste, the brand focuses on incorporating innovative new materials such as fabrics made from rose petals which is known as Rose Silk!
Image 2: A vibrant Collina Strada creation for PreFall Season 2021.
Hotel Vetements is a French-Danish love affair by the Danish Fashion Designer Alexandra Hartman. The journey started with the transformation of high-quality yet old curtains to sophisticated pieces of modern clothing. Moreover, the brand creates upcycling, artisanal apparel not only from forgotten curtains and upholsteries but also from hand-embroideries, linen textiles, tablecloths, cotton sheets from provence and much more. As a result, each garment has their own style of vintage effect. More so, no two items are similar. They support uniqueness and imperfection of each beautiful artifact.
Zero Waste Daniel
Zero Waste Daniel is the first company making 100% zero waste apparel. This company uses pre-consumer waste sourced from New York city’s garment industry and other hard-to-recycle materials to make genderless clothing and accessories with artistic creations. Many of their unisex garments are textile off-cuts produced by the fashion industry. These off-cuts are stored in tiny jars and later used to be used in the making of casual wear garments. The brand, hence, recreates textile by products as well as inspire people to rethink about waste and reduce their impact.
ZWD storage of scraps of fabrics in tiny jars. Courtesy: Vincent Tullo for The New York Times
Established by Indian daughter of a garment factory owner, Iro Iro is a sustainable design practice where each product gets new life from pre-consumer waste fabric. Then, this fabric is woven by hand outside of Jaipur into a rich textile fabric. Artisans take advantage of this handwoven, upcycled textiles to create ingenious clothing and accessories through zero waste cutting techniques. During the processing, Iro Iro establishes the essence of Indian craftsmanship and tradition.
Anna Foster, a Stylist and Creative Director, is also the founder of E.L.V. Denim. This brand upcycles unwanted jeans and jackets and transforms them into modern sophisticated pieces of clothing. Their recycling journey starts by taking unwanted jeans from warehouses around the United Kingdom. Then the washing process starts using a local East London launderette called Cleanex run by Korosh Murad. This washing process is vital which removes unnecessary materials from the discarded pieces of denim. Cleanex is well known for using only 7liters of water to wash the fabrics, where a brand new pair of manufactured jeans would require 7000liters! After washing, the denims are measured and sorted for the atelier. All the jeans are cut manually and made by using traditional denim methods. Even the labelling has their concept of sustainability. The labels are made from scraps of unused pieces of leather, ensuring the zero-waste policy! Thus E.L.V. completes their mission of preparing neoteric sustainable dresses without environmental pollution, assuring what the designer, Anna Foster, herself quoted-
“Sustainability is the ultimate part of what I do. We live in a very aesthetic world, so a successful brand has to marry carefully the two of them together.”
Image 4: Anna Foster with waste denims collected throughout UK. Courtesy: elvdenim.com
Kriti Tula is a designer, also the Founder of Doodlage Retail. She and her Doodlage team upcycles industrial waste fabric into wearable fashion, upholstery and accessories. According to the article of Reverse Resources, about 12 million tons of post-consumer textiles are available to be reused and upcycled. Relating to this concept, Doodlage generates pieces from tattered textiles and materials found. Therefore, they hunt for the ragged material first, and enter into the design process second. They collect all sorts and sizes of fabrics, from under 100 meters to very short ones. All the relevant fabrics are then mixed and matched with a follow-up of patching, embroidering and more. This is how Doodlage pieces are restored to life.
Christy Dawn is the founder of Christy Dawn. She and her husband launched the company. It consists of dresses made with only deadstock fabric. The question is, what is exactly deadstock fabric? Normally, deadstock fabrics are those that are old and unable to be sold. In modern era, deadstock fabrics particularly refers to all those that are left over from other fashion houses. Before they are thrown away in the landfill, Christy Dawn and team, rescues these deadstock fabrics and turn them into dresses. But one of the disadvantages they follow is that, when they use deadstock fabrics, they are limited in the number of dresses they can make, as there are not unlimited amounts of fabric to be used to make a full fashionable garment.
Designer & Surfer John Moore co-founded Outerknown with 11-time world surfing champion Kelly Slater. From their very start, this brand had a challenge to build sustainable products. The brand makes comfortable and casual beach style clothings rooted in longevity and transparency. Over 90% of Outerknown’s products are made from organic, recycled and regenerated fiber and materials. One of their most amazing route to sustainability is the use of Econyl! Econyl is a type of nylon made entirely of wastages. Since Outerknown is highly inspired by beach styles, due to the inspirations collected from the 2 surfer co-founders, this brand collects fish nets to turn them into econyl fibers. It is one of their fascinating ways to clean the ocean!
Famous S.E.A Jeans by Outerknown- an outcome from 98% organic cotton that lasts long. Courtesy: outerknown.com
The founders of Insecta are Pamela Magpali and Barbara Mattivy. It’s a Brazilian shoe label that transforms fabrics and prints from vintage clothing into vegan footwear. Not only that, this brand is highly known for their application of plastic bottles in the manufacturing process! Insecta makes awesome fashion lines that includes shoes, desert boots, sandals and Chelsea boots using recycled plastic, unwanted rubber and second-hand textiles materials.
Image 6: A printed Insecta shoe made entirely out of plastic! Courtesy: shopinsecta.com
It is certain, any upcycled textile reduces the chance of negative environmental impact. Anything that is made out of waste, now is a new way of thinking and creating fashion in a different manner indeed, just like a Phoenix would start its life anew!
By Team Bespoke,
Mentor: Tasphia Zaman (TFD 44, ID: 2018-1-6-009)
Leader: Khadiza Sharmin (TFD 45, ID: 2019-1-6-015)
Executive: Nahema Haque Khushe (TFD 46, ID: 2020-1-6-002)
Whenever we are asking which cloth makes you feel comfortable while you are travelling? An answer always passes through your head and you look down to your pair of jeans. Yes, there lies the answer!
Jeans are made of denim fabric a famous fabric for its durability. But have you ever thought weather your jeans are ecofriendly or not? Or have you ever wondered if the fabric was made is a different way to make it strong? May be you have or may be you haven’t. If you have then hope this article will provide you with a best answer!
Why Denim is considered as strong fabric?
Denim were made for gold miners as their fabrics needed to be strong enough and could handle the hazardous work they do. And Levi and Strauss first invented the denim that could hold its shape even after working in the mines or other hazardous work and it didn’t need frequent washing. It started blooming since then, Then it made debut as a film dress and become popular in cowboy movies and western movies.
Special weaving process and rivets to keep it from ripping made it strong than other clothes.
Picture: Factory beside a river. Courtesy: Photo by Linda Finkin on Unsplash
Why is it considered as a non eco friendly fabric?
Talking about denim’s being not an eco-friendly fabric, we can sort the problems in a numerical order and denim has got problem in every step of its way to processing from cotton to
finished fabric. Here are the problems described and I have also described how they can be reduced to minimum.
Cotton Cultivation Process:
Cotton plants need a lot of water to start with and even one of the most pesticide using plants. So they are polluting water and actually consuming a lot of water. Producing just 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds) of cotton can require up to 7,660 gallons of water, depending on where it’s grown. So it’s a huge amount of water. Even workers who are working in the field are exposed to the chemicals that are used as pesticides.
Picture: Cotton. Courtesy: Photo by Amber Martin on Unsplash.
Dying process in the textile factory means dying the fabric with chemicals and colors as coloration process needs various chemicals to make the colors long-lasting. A series of chemicals are used to treat denim fabric and it’s colored with indigo color, a special color that lasts long enough to have the fabric
10/11 wash. 7.5 billion feet of denim fabric is produced every single year and they are repeatedly washed with water. A question may arise so what is the problem! We can use wasted water! But unfortunately we cannot do that as we have used the chemicals once and it has different ratio after one use. So the waters are wasted. It was noticed that Xintang, a town in southern China, the denim capital of word faced a disaster in 2013 . All of its rivers ran deep blue and smelled foul because the denim producers damped all the wasted water in the river.
Washing denim is a process where a lot of chemical treatment is involved. While researching it was found that denim fabric contains heavy metal which can be disastrous for human life. After the pieces of denim is sewn together it is tossed into a variety of washing machine to gain the color or the faded color according to the trend and design.
So how to overcome this situation? Is there any solution to this problem? As human brain is the most sophisticated one, it has been searching for the solution for decades and a lot of solution has came forward. Let’s talk about that!
Hemp vs Cotton!
Hemp is often considered as a drug which is a miss conception. Levi the legendary brand of denim has found a technology to make hemp feel like cotton. They have blended 30% hemp and 70% cotton in their denim. Hemp produces fibers more than same amount of cotton and they need less amount of water to cultivate.
So it is a legendary step in the world of denim as denim is one of the most environment polluting industry in the world.
Courtesy: Photo by Rick Proctor on Unsplash.
Courtesy: Photo by Hanna Balan on Unsplash. Picture: Hemp vs Cotton.
As we know the washing process need a lot of water so we need to reduce the amount of water. Some company has been trying to develop the environment. Pakistani denim company named Soorty has been trying to develoo a denim laundry system that is environment friendly and socially conscious. It has already invested to the most expensive wet denim processing plant in Pakistan. Later on they established A spinning space and in house recycling unit to recycle the wasted water.
This Industry needs to work altogether to reduces the effects and that’s why they made a joint effort in 2019 to go the greener way to reduce the pollution. The brands who have signed the commitment, they express their feeling as they are committed to creat a product or multiple products in adherence to the jeans redesign guideliness. Similarly, in fall 2020, Dutch and international brands signed the Denim Deal in Amsterdam, a pledge to reform and recycle jeans. The project, which is an initiative by House of Denim and the Dutch government, was started to create a circular economy and reuse more old denim garments.
Picture: Denim for future! Courtesy: Photo by Albany Capture on Unsplash.
It will continue as a debate topic that weather Denim is a fabric that we should put away or we should continue with it! But as long as I don’t have to wash my denim regularly and is made with latest ways, I am not leaving my most reliable “Friend Dress” Jeans!
Go green! Save the environment and wear jeans which are less hazardous to the environment!
By Team Bucolic Bohemian,
Mentor: Umme Memory Mim (Id: 2018-1-6-012) Dept: Textile Fashion & Design
Leader: Sabiha Moon Taha (Id: 2019-1-6-006) Dept: Textile Fashion & Design
Executive: Md. Mahmud Hosen (Id: 2020-1-2-006) Dept: Fabric Engineering
If you want to read about a denim brand called Risen Jeans, you can go here! We’ve got you covered!
What is Sustainable Fashion:
Sustainable fashion is a developing process of compliance change to fashion products, actually all over the fashion system as well as fashion industry. It can easily keep contribution towards greater ecological integrity & also can inspire us to be self-confident in fashion so that the elegancy of a person as well as the whole civilization can be expressed clearly.
If we want to describe the environmental impacts on sustainable fashion then we must have knowledge about fashion industry. Almost all the processes of making an apparel from fiber are conducted in an industry. And the whole process follows some steps consciously. Generally four steps are as follows:
1.Raw materials like fiber and yarns & other necessary elements are produced,
2.Fashion good are produced & designed by designers,manufacturers,contractors & others.
3.Giving a transparent idea of retailing sells.
4.Advertisement & promoting.
Environmental Hazards facing for fashion industries:
Its a bitter truth that the imperfect manufacturing process of those products which seem elegant to us, are responsible for many environmental issues. During high water usage, high chemical treatments used in weaving, dyeing or in other processes environment hazards are faced badly. And it’s actually a matter of concern that only 20% of clothing is recycled or reused and the rest are being wasted. It has been reckoned that only in UK around 350,000 tons of clothing ends up as dissipation every year. According to Earth Pledge, a non-profit organization committed to promoting and supporting sustainable development, almost 25% of the world’s pesticides are used to grow non-organic cotton & at least 8000 toxic chemicals are used to get textiles from raw materials. Another study shows that approximately 34.8% of microplastics are found in the oceans basically coming from textile industries. Microfibers are tiny enough & for that reason it can easily mix up with the wastes. So, by eliminating synthetic materials used in textile products & by following the three ‘R’s reducing, reusing and recycling, we can prevent harmful synthetics and microfibers from ending up in our environment.
But we can easily move on from these hazards by adopting sustainable fashion. Actually sustainable fashion works with a goal which concerns for saving our environment from any kind of negative footprint.
How sustainable fashion can help to solve environmental issues:
Conversation of Natural Resources by Sustainable Fashion:
By recycling products we can easily get back our natural resources & it can be hoped that we can get rid of annihilation of most important products of our nature. And it is a matter of hope that recycled fibers have been proven to be a much more sustainable option, as they solve the most concerned problems of waste management. A study from 2015 shows that to make clothes, 97% new resources are used, only 3% of it are recycled materials.
Reduction of dangerous Carbon Footprints:
The global fashion industry is responsible for global warming. Mainly using the clothes which are petroleum based and made from fossil fuels including polyester, acrylic & nylon are the reasons of environmental hazards. Actually these kinds of materials require more energy than the natural0000 materials. And which fabrics are made from sustainable wood pulp such as TENCEL and also natural fibers such as cotton, hemp, linen are biodegradable which can easily reduce dangerous carbon footprints.
Sustainable Fashion Safeguards Animal Lives:
An estimation showed that over 430 million animals per year are slaughtered & killed for only the leather industry. But sustainable fashion helps our animals because many of the clothes are made from sustainable wood pulp & also clothes of cellulosic, protein & mineral origins.
Requires Less Water in Sustainable Fashion:
Our textile industries, in present or in future, maybe unable to be built up beside or in those areas which have sufficient water. But water is a major resource for the fashion industry & the works of spinning, weaving, knitting, dyeing and finishing process can’t be done without water. How much water we need to have a apparel from the fibers can be said like this-to produce a single T-shirt, it takes an incredible amount of 2700 liters of water! Cotton is highly dependent on water, but is usually grown in hot & dry areas where water is a scarce resource already. On the other hand, organic cotton reduces water consumption by 91%. And if we say about sustainable fabrics, these fabrics require little to no water.
Fairer & Safer Working Condition is Introduced:
It’s a bitter truth that most of the inenarrable masters treat rudely with the workers. Endless working hours, unacceptable health & safety conditions have to be faced by those workers. But if sustainable fashion can be introduced broadly, this time duration can be decreased & also works will be enjoyable!
Healthier for People & Planet:
Almost everyone know about fast fashion but in fast fashion, intense chemicals are used which are actually harmful to health. Around 8000 different synthetic chemicals are used to dye, bleach and wet process garments. Those chemicals are so dangerous that they often cause severe diseases or even deaths among farmers and create acute birth defects on their children.
Some of these chemicals pose a real threat to our health because our skin absorbs anything we put on it even dangerous chemicals! But in using process of sustainable fashion, we don’t have to use those dangerous chemicals at all. So, it’s healthy enough for plants, animals as well as human beings.
Sustainable Fashion Reminds Us How To Love Our Clothes Again:
Everyone feels good when he looks at a gorgeous, finished piece of clothing in a store but forgets the background story of this nice work! It’s not actually our fault at all because we are not introduced with this sustainable fashionable products. And as a result we are unable to make a correct decision of buying anything related with textile. But when sustainable fashion will be introduced, we will be more conscious & get comfortable clothes by proper buying decision.
How Sustainability Can Save The Fashion Industry After COVID-19:
Already many questions have been arisen about the uncertainty of textile industry as well as fashion industries after this pandemic situation of COVID-19. Every sector related with textile is in uncertainty now. But sustainable fashion can do a great job in this case! It’s true that sustainable fashion has not spread its branches in all sectors but it can easily do that very soon. It will easily access in total textile industry as luxury, sport etc. However, it is more relevant than ever as a recent study finds the current crisis that all the textile industries can come back with a great profit by sustainable fashion after the pandemic.
Sustainable fashion will protect critical assets to survey the economic crisis. It can be hoped that sustainability will be an imperative for strong companies & also the entrepreneurs can work with it spontaneously after this pandemic. Sustainable fashion is actually the come back of some products with quality & durability at a time. Then coming to the point of getting facilities in business we can uphold the statement of Kate Heiny, sustainability director at Zalando SE. He said that after this COVID-19, sustainability will help us stay ahead of customers. Last of all we can hope that as it is very much helpful towards our environmental & social issues, so it will be granted unanimously by everyone!
The fashion industry needs to become more sustainable to fulfill the volition of the consumer need & expectations because almost all of the consumers are aware of environmental issues nowadays. So, by keeping in our mind about the pressure of the consumers & also business profits and all over to save our environment we should introduce, establish & start up sustainable fashion in our fashion industries as soon as possible.
Department of Environmental Science and Engineering
Bangladesh University of Textiles (BUTEX)
You can read another article of the same author: Textile Recycling: Reducing Waste and Promoting Circular Economy