Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Cotton On - Designers for Environmental Justice Pop Up Store

At the far end of London's Carnaby Street, where it meets Beak Street, there is an intriguing little pop up store filled with gorgeous t-shirts by top fashion names including Alice Temperley, Richard Nicoll, Giles Deacon, Luella, Betty Jackson, Christian Lacroix and Katharine Hamnett ('Save The Sea' T pictured above, £40), all for around £30-£40 each. Obviously, I couldn't resist popping in. The shop, which is there for another six weeks, is a 'Cotton Campaign' charity endeavour in aid of the Environmental Justice Foundation who work to protect the natural environment and defend human rights; areas where the fashion industry tends to trail woefully behind. The designs are based on the theme of childhood, lost innocence and hope and represent the million plus children forced to work in cotton fields around the world, where they are frequently exposed to harmful pesticides for little or no pay. The cotton used for these runs is also organic and child-labour-free, promoting a positive alternative for consumers and aiming to raise both awareness and funds for this worthwhile, but little known, charity. The staff are extremely helpful, knowledgable about the situation and the work the charity does whilst not being pushy - unusual and refreshing for a charity store. They are planning a run of other fundraising events including film nights while they're in this temporary base so, if you're interested, pop in and stick your email down on the mailing list. If you can't get down to the store, you can also buy from a slightly more limited selection (no kidswear) on their website here and help buy Picking Your Cotton Carefully. See http://www.ejfoundation.org/ for more information.

From Top Left: Jenny Packham hand-print butterfly design ( just seen, far right), £30; kids tops; red print on white Ciel London, black Giles Deacon and black print on white Richard Nicoll designs, all £30 each; campaign logo.

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