Making the world a little better

Tuesday, 23 October 2012
“We arrived in an era of change, open your eyes!”  Vida Ipektchi  has a simple mission: the consumer can force leading companies through his consumption behavior to produce eco-friendly and  socially acceptable products. “We arrived in an era of change, open your eyes!”  Vida Ipektchi  has a simple mission: the consumer can force leading companies through his consumption behavior to produce eco-friendly and  socially acceptable products.
The 24 year-old student just finished her master in “Sustainability in Fashion” at private university ESMOD Berlin.

The one year master program educates its students among other things especially in Critical Studies, Sustainable Textiles, Production, Design Strategies and Marketing. The study path tries to find new solutions for old problems such as long production distances, exceeded water consumption, dangerous chemicals in textile staining, unfair working conditions and the general treatment of raw materials. 

Vida Ipetchki wrote a study about what companies can do to realize sustainability. “Before I started my master I planned to do a concept store for green fashion, but this isn’t enough anymore”.
With 11 fellow students Vida Ipektchi worked on a project to find out what sustainability really means for fashion. She developed a so called Track & Trace Tag, which informs the consumer about the items origin and its optimal treatment.
Daniela Franceschini from Spain went to a leprosycamp in Nepal to produce textiles and baskets out of banana yarns. The fabrics were used for a collection combining timeless luxury and social integrity.
She now decided to stay in Berlin- a place where green fashion is welcomed.

“Even internationally it is recognized that Berlin is the capital for everything green”, states Friedrike von Wedel-Parlow, professor and head of the study path “Sustainability in Fashion” at ESMOD Berlin.
Several agencies, shops and trade fairs like the “Green Showroom” or the “Ethical Fashion Show”, which both take place twice a year during the Berlin Fashion Week are now scientifically complemented by the degree program “Sustainability in Fashion”.

There is no comparable master in Germany yet. Therefore it was fascinating for the director Friedrike von Wedel-Parlow how the results, the master theses look like. “We had 12 totally different projects.”
The biggest difference to conventional studies has been the lively knowledge exchange, says Friederike von Wedel-Parlow. The Fashion Industry lives from networking.

According to the director of the course it is not about producing a collection made out of beautiful fabrics. “The view on clothes changes: where do the materials come from, who reproduces them and how to communicate a project, to make the people understand the importance?”
In accordance with this point of view, 12 students showcased their work in the “Platoon-Kunsthalle” / Prenzlauer Berg in Berlin.

Many questions have been raised: ‘How will fashion producers incorporate new standards of sustainability within their production? Is sustainable fashion luxurious? How will the industry evolve to meet the demands of increasingly informed consumers in a socially, economically and environmentally conscious climate?’

The exposition was attended by 300 guests and an international fashion experts jury, assessing the graduates work and awarding a special prize each.