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Fashion is much more than apparel – it’s a form of expression, a cultural lodestone, a part of Lenzing’s history and heritage. In turn, sustainability in fashion isn’t just about the environment, but about the relationship between humans, culture, and the environment.
Awareness of how all these elements interplay is central to the work of Lenzing, and why the company is delighted to be a partner of Eco Fashion Week Indonesia (EFWI), which encompassed all of the above concepts. Took place between November 30 to December 2, 2018, EFWI was the first such event in Asia, and was established to bring light and insight to the questions around advancing sustainability amidst Indonesia’s diverse cultures and fast economic growth, particularly in the textile industry.
Participants at EFWI, including 30 local and international designers, were invited to consider various related challenges. For example, traditional items of Muslim clothing are mostly made of polyester, rayon, and nylon today, which creates barrier for adherents to fulfill their responsibilities in environmental conservation. Additionally, pollution of the water sources from textile production are damaging to the environment, but Indonesia’s garment industry is one of the important pillars of the country’s economic development.
The expertise of Lenzing in sustainable botanic fibers offered solutions to challenges as such. All Lenzing’s cellulose fibers produced are made from wood, a renewable raw material, resulting in lower water consumption over the life cycle of the fibers and materials that decompose by biological means, without leaving harmful residue behind. Natural cellulose also results in fibers that are very effective in absorbing moisture from the human body and are soft and supple.
Working together, EFWI pioneer Merdi Sihombing; young Indonesian designers Anita Natalia and Aldis Rusli, and Lenzing representatives Mariam Tania and Rosa Milyarna, promoted the cause of sustainable fibers and fashion at the event.
TENCEL™ brand also hosted a “New Faces” fashion show at EFWI, celebrating innovation and diversity in sustainable design. Fifteen Indonesian young designers showcased their designs, with a mix of casual wear, traditional Batik designs, and haute couture.
During EFWI, TENCEL™ brand is also being featured with the launch of the “Save the Loom” campaign, which promotes the preservation of local cultures and the environment while enhancing the livelihood of local residents. This initiative – led by the Indonesia Ministry of Villages, Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration, Ministry of Education and Culture and The National Alms Agency – aims to support improvements in the quality of life and community welfare of local weavers in Lombok and Donggala following natural disasters. These weavers are key to safeguarding of sustainability and are vital in the movement to promote sustainable fibers in the fashion industry, making them central to Lenzing and TENCEL™ brand’s vision.
EFWI beautifully underlined how together, the fashion industry can redesign the unsustainable practices of today to build a more sustainable future. Culture and society need not be in conflict with natural resources, and the fashion industry can thrive without compromising the health of the people and our planet.