A note from our team about COVID-19

Li Edelkoort On Fashion's Slow Down

by: Well Made Clothes Staff | 5 months ago | News

Image: Li Edelkoort. Image source

The Coronavirus pandemic has already affected almost all industries worldwide and one sector that is really feeling the slow down right now is fast fashion. A situation which Dutch trend forecaster Li Edelkoort refers to as “an amazing grace for the planet”.

According to recent analysis by financial firm UBS, two of the most vulnerable retailers are fast fashion giants H&M and Zara’s parent company Inditex. “Covid-19 has forced factory closures all around [China], throwing fashion’s supply chain in the country into disarray,” Quartz writes. And, as manufacturing slows down in all countries across the globe, this is only going to affect fast fashion further.

“The virus will slow down everything,” Edelkoort explains. “We will see an arrest in the making of consumer goods. That is terrible and wonderful because we need to stop producing at such a pace. We need to change our behaviour to save the environment.” Speaking with Imran Ahmed of Business of Fashion recently, Edelkoort talks about “jumping off the carousel” and finally getting around to doing less – which also means consuming less.

The trend forecaster agrees that there are “massively negative” things happening right now and that she is mourning in many ways. But, at the same time, she views Covid-19 as a representation of our collective conscience. “It brings to light what is so terribly wrong with society,” Edelkoort elaborates. “And it teaches us to slow down and to change our ways.”

She is hopeful, then, that after all this is over, we will be able to “completely reset society and make a new world”. Having grown up in the fifties, Edelkoort points out that she knows “how nice it is to have less” and believes we need to remember now that we don’t always have to consume so much.

“Greed is the big enemy of us all, so it’s almost like the Covid-19 virus is fighting the greed virus,” Edelkoort says. Above all, she emphasises that we need to focus on “what is essential, what is not and how [we can] create new systems which will be much less polluting.”


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