STOCKHOLM, Oct 27 — The Swedish clothing brand is committed to upping the ante when it comes to promoting more responsible fashion, and the company’s vision includes a concern for animal welfare. From November 4, the company will offer its first collection designed from materials that are alternatives to animal-derived ones. Animal rights association People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has validated the initiative.
Fast fashion is regularly criticised for its social and environmental impact, to the point where it’s been called “disposable fashion,” as opposed to sustainable fashion. But it is clear that in recent months some of the actors in the business have been working hard on initiatives that emphasize responsible fashion. This is particularly the case of H&M, which, after presenting Looop, its in-store recycling system, and experimenting with a blockchain-based rental service for clothes, is now unveiling a collection totally free of animal-derived materials.
Notably, PETA itself has endorsed this first animal welfare-friendly collection, which is based on alternatives to leather or down, for example. “Much of our work at PETA is accomplished by forming positive relationships with companies such as H&M as we strive to end the use of animal-derived materials. We’re thrilled to partner with H&M on a collection that features fabulous vegan designs that are kinder to the planet and to the animals who live on it,” explains Laura Shields, Corporate Responsibility Manager at PETA.
A growing variety of leather alternatives
This ready-to-wear collection for men, women, and children was created using new-generation fabrics that replace animal-derived materials. Pieces were designed in FLWRDWN, a material — not easy to pronounce — made from wild flowers to replace animal down, and in VEGEA, a vegetable substitute for leather that the Swedish giant has already used in previous collections.
Grapes, mushrooms, bananas, cacti, pineapples, corn, or apples — fashion is gradually moving towards fruits and vegetables in its bid to replace a controversial material: leather. From Stella McCartney, a pioneer in the field, to Le Coq Sportif and Karl Lagerfeld, fashion actors are now striving to find materials that are more in line with consumer expectations that emphasise protecting the environment and animal welfare.
This new collection by H&M, called “Co-Exist Story,” includes an oversized faux fur coat for women, an oversized anorak for men, and T-shirts and outdoor clothing for kids. The set is completed by a series of accessories, including natural rubber boots and vegan makeup certified by The Vegan Society.
The collection will be available for purchase on November 4 worldwide on hm.com and in select stores. — ETX Studio