Statements run through the blood of cultish-cool brand Vetements. Their newest challenge, you wonder? Tackling the serious predicament of overconsumption in the fashion industry and the detriment it is having on the world.
Yesterday, the Swiss label unveiled four windows, in Harrods on Brompton Road, piled top-to-bottom with unwanted clothes. CEO Guram Gvasalia, who co-founded the brand with his brother Demna, has said we need to have a “proper and honest conversation about fashion’s issue of overproduction, and the damaging effect it’s having on the planet.”
“After the oil-industry, fashion is the second biggest polluting industry in the world and overproduction is one of the biggest environmental problems of today. Over 30 per cent of merchandise produced by fashion brands are never sold and end up in landfills.”
This was not the first time Vetements have highlighted the issues of overproduction. Throughout the past year, they have staged waste focused events at Maxfield in Los Angeles, Saks Fifth Avenue in New York, and Browns East in London. Gvasalia said, “But in this age, doing something once or twice isn’t enough. Our phone screens refresh so quickly that our attention spans have shrunk”. The brand will devote the next 12 months to shining light on the situation, beginning with taking their eye-catching concept to a further 50 installations across the world.
When the campaign finishes on March 2nd, all the clothes featured in the display will be donated to the NSPCC, the popular children’s charity. The garments themselves have been donated by over 4000 Harrods employees and signify the truth behind this troubling issue.
Vetements strategise their creativity around the belief that less is more. Less clothes at a higher price ensures supply will never outweigh demand; thus avoiding overproduction. “In a very fast world, the fashion tends to be too fast too,” says Guram. “We like the idea of slowing down. We like the idea of slow fashion to buy less, buy quality and buy long-term.”
Those wishing to join the brothers on their aesthetical concept can donate unwanted clothes at banks located within Harrods; we’ll see you there.