Is it possible to create a ethical bridal-wear collection?
I wish I could simply say "yes" to this question, I don't want to harm the envoronment for doing what I love. But the truth is, it's a huge challenge to become 100% ethical due to costs and quality of fabrics available. I haven't been fortunate to find ethically sourced materials that are slylish and affordable.
Take silk for example, there are ethical silk manufactures that produces silk cloths made without killing silkworms. Usually silk cocoons are boiled to dissolves the gummy substance holding the cocoon together so the strands of silk can be unwound. The longer the strand, the better quality silk you can produce. By allowing the moths to emerge from its cocoons, big holes will be created that break the fibres. These shorter filaments mean that the silks will not be beautifully smooth.
Unbleached off-white Charmeuse silk was used as main fabric for La Sposa Berlinese's "All about love" collection.
I have used synthetic lace on the same collection for cost reason. 100% silk lace is expensive and rare to find, good quality systhetic laces such as ones that I have sourced from France are not only beautiful but also less frigile and won't get eaten by moths!
The other side of being ethical which I have control of is, where our gowns are made. I keep the production in Europe so that the garment makers are protected by the European law. Eastern European countries such as Poland, Lithuania, Ukraine etc has very good skilled workers, so they are ideal places to produce high quality gowns.
The bridal wear industry has one big advantage to protect the environment, bridal gowns are one of the least likely item of clothing that end up in landfill! Not only brides are likely to keep the gown but many also sell on their gowns as "pre-loved". I welcome this idea that dresses are given the chance twice and more to provide for the happiness of another bride and being environmentally friendly!