Interview with Ethical Fashion Forum

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Every week we are constantly surprised by the number of new people that we’re connecting with who are doing amazing things around the world.   eff2

BFW: For those who do not know, what is Ethical Fashion Forum? 

EFF: The Ethical Fashion Forum is a global platform for sustainable fashion. Through our online platform, SOURCE, we provide resources, intelligence, and training to help fashion professionals to build successful, sustainable businesses. We also provide an online database for suppliers, brands, consultants and fashion professionals to network and communicate with each other.  

 

BFW: What do you think of BFW as an event? 

EFF: We are really excited about Brighton Fashion Week here at Ethical Fashion Forum - it offers a refreshing showcase of innovative and sustainable design. Just what we like!  

 

BFW: The constant of fast fashion has a massive environmental effect, what are the next steps for as in terms of fashion? 

EFF: Fast fashion is very much part of our society, so we aim to work with this concept in mind, helping these companies to become more ethically minded whilst also giving ethical companies the chance to grasp a firm footing in amongst the fashion giants. We think the next steps for fashion are in transparency. Nobody’s perfect, but a transparent supply chain offers the industry and consumers the choice. We think that is very important.

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BFW: For BFW you are our main partner this year, how important to you is it to support events that celebrate sustainable fashion, like BFW? 

EFF: We are so proud to be partnering with BFW this year and celebrating sustainable fashion with you. It is important in any business sector to support one another - we take pride in associating with great events such as BFW and we love meeting new people that are as passionate as us about ethical and sustainable practice in the fashion industry.  

 

BFW: How did you first get involved in Ethical Fashion? 

EFF: Our CEO Tasmin Lejeune started the Ethical Fashion Forum 10 years ago after she was spending time sourcing in Bangladesh for her own fairtrade fashion label. She was struck by the massive opportunity for fashion to change lives, so she came back and started this movement with a group of likeminded designers and entrepreneurs. 

Since then, as a team, we’ve been lucky to meet and work with so many others who share the same passion for creating an industry that has positive social and environmental impacts and also encourages all budding fashion entrepreneurs to be successful in a competitive industry.
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BFW: Where do you see the fashion industry in 10 years time? 
EFF: Sustainability is increasingly becoming a licence to operate in the fashion industry and we hope to see this being the ‘norm’ rather than the exception in 10 years time. Consumers are demanding it and businesses are proving that commercial profitability and sustainability can go hand in hand very well. 
 
In 10 years, we hope the fashion industry is full of diverse young talent from all corners of the globe, and that all fashion professionals feel supported to build successful, sustainable businesses.
BFW: From your social media networks, you have a massive following of people who support sustainable fashion and choose to educate themselves in this. Has it always been like this? 
EFF: We have definitely seen a growth in our social media following in recent years with more and more people wanting to learn about the issues in sustainable fashion. Our network of  is made up of all kinds of people - from businesses wanting to connect with others and learn more about best practice in the industry, to consumers who just love to be inspired by the stories behind their products. 
 
Every week we are constantly surprised by the number of new people that we’re connecting with who are doing amazing things around the world.
eff4 BFW: Outside of work, do you do anything that would positively impact on the environment? 
EFF: Our staff are a bunch of very passionate people. We are made up of cyclists, foodies, recyclers, ethical consumers, inspiring speakers, campaign supporters, and community advocates. We’re absolutely not perfect, but we try! 
BFW: Fast fashion is a dangerous and can be life threatening for the environment and workers, how are we going to cut this down? 
EFF: One of the best ways to do this is to educate and share knowledge. Through our current intelligence platform, we aim to provide businesses, students, and entrepreneurs with information on how to source more ethically, advice on things such as regulations surrounding ethical practice, and case studies on companies who are getting it right. 
 
We’ve been working hard on making this platform even better for our members and are about to launch an equity crowdfunding campaign for the next phase of the platform - Mysource. 
 
Mysource is an online B2B platform that matches fashion professionals to the right connections, resources, and tools that will help them succeed. It’s tailored to each user’s needs, and also incentivises more sustainable practice by rewarding users with more profile and better search rankings on the site. 
 
You can learn more about the new platform here - www.mysource.io - and watch out for the opportunity to become an investor for as little as £10 through Crowdcube on Monday 26 October
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Facebook: Ethical Fashion Forum    Twitter: @EthicalFashionF
Instagram: @ethicalfashionforum
Interview by Maisie Franklin