On the final day of The GreenShows during New York Fashion Week, Ekovaruhuset / House of Organic showed their new collections. It is technically Fall/Winter, but the House of Organic does not really depend on the seasons the way the big fashion houses do; they don’t even depend on trends. The ethereal, fair made creations are as timeless as they are beautiful.
Ekovaruhuset / House of Organic is a collective of like-minded designers, all deeply dedicated to sustainability. This show featured work of founder Johanna Hofring, her huband Tor Söderin, Renata Mann, Kaori Yamazaki, Mika Machida, Jennifer Wen Ma, Meiling Chen and Eko-Lab, another design collective closely affiliated with the House of Organic.
I love Ekovaruhuset, not only because I share a motherland and first name with founder Johanna Hofring, but because they are one of the most conscious fashion houses out there. All the clothes are made in the most natural way, using all organic materials. This means the fibers that the fabrics are made of have been grown without the use of chemical fertilizers or pesticides and made into fabric, then dyed in facilities that are environmentally responsible. There are a few exceptions, such as zippers, some buttons, threads and ink for printing, because these are areas that have not yet been perfected. (Ekovaruhuset designers are always looking for better alternatives, please contact them if you know of any.) The wool comes from animals that have been treated well and have never had to experience chemical baths or other torturous methods. It is all organic and most of it is certified (some comes from small producers that are closely monitored to ensure they always work according to organic guidelines).
“I was designing and making clothes for as long as I can remember. I always enjoyed this a lot, but it was a few years ago when I first started using only organic materials and opened Ekovaruhuset in Stockholm that it got really exciting,” says Hofring. “Like most of us, I had no idea what kind of effect the textile industry has on the environment. I had heard a story or two about mistreated workers in sewing factories, but had never been able to grasp the amount of violations against human rights and our earth that are committed in the name of vanity and profit.”
Ekovaruhuset uses the term “Fair Made” which, along the lines of “Fair Trade,” means that they support producers that practice fair working conditions and ethics for their employees, as well also encourage and support smaller scale local production units, as this makes for better communication and cooperation.
Says Johanna Hofring: “Of course I want beautiful clothes… but at what price? I don’t believe many people would enjoy their clothing the same way if they got to follow its path from seed to sale. The way we choose to shop can change the impact industry has on our planet and the lives of millions of people and animals into something very positive. It’s all about having fun and looking fabulous while saving the world…”
Top photo, from left to right: linen jersey patchwork ruffle dress by Johanna Hofring and crochet angora scarf by Tor Söderin, lace structured button-up dress by Eko-Lab, linen/wool jumpsuit by Johanna Hofring with braided belt by Tor Söderin and necklace by Renata Mann, crochet dress by Kaori Yamazaki and legwarmers by Johanna Hofring.
Photos by Johanna Björk. See more from The GreenShows here.