VIN + OMI Highlight Plastic Waste With A Little Help From Blondie
The out-of-schedule date was of no consequence to VIN + OMI’s loyal and high profile followers with the likes of Boy George (pictured below), Anita Rani and Jane Horrocks sat comfortably on the front row.
This was no ordinary collection however, VIN + OMI like to challenge and often bring up the question of sustainability into their collections. This season the focus was firmly on the issue of plastic waste and what can be done with recycled ocean and river collected plastic.
More plastic has been produced in the last ten years than the last century. An issue that affects wildlife and our environment. VIN + OMI (who have received an award by the National Endowment for Science and Technology Award) have been creating ways to work with sustainable materials in fashion and this season they have created the collection mainly with rPET fabrics which have been made from recycled plastic bottles.
Blondie AKA Debbie Harry, long time friend of the designers agreed to model and she is also a long time supporter of Riverkeeper in New York, an organisation dedicated to cleaning up the Hudson River. “Plastic is polluting our oceans and rivers. Recycling it into fun fashion helps chip away at global problem,” she said.
Debbie is no stranger to VIN + OMI fashion on and off stage and is currently wearing VIN + OMI outfits on the current Blondie “Pollinator” tour and the “Rage and Rapture tour.”
“Why I am walking in the VIN + OMI show…?….They believe, like I do, that we should STOP FUCKING THE PLANET,” Debbie stated!
This marked the first time the international music icon has walked in a UK catwalk show and she was joined by Blondie band member Matt Katz -Bohen.
On the collection VIN + OMI said: “VIN + OMI are passionate about campaigning for the use of textiles made from recycled plastic, especially from ocean salvage.
“It is a sad fact that plastic bottles, for example, can take hundreds of years to biodegrade, other types of plastic even longer. So recycling what won’t go away, in the right way, is essential. We hope this show will encourage more designers worldwide to explore their local textile options and turn discarded plastic into clothing.
“The connections worldwide need to be strengthened between the recycling channels and textile production. Designer demand can help strengthen this pathway. We want this show to highlight how innovative eco fabrics can be fun, high fashion and wearable. It’s great to have Debbie supporting us to raise awareness of how fashion can take responsibility.”
VIN + OMI’s SS18 show and 11th fashion collection was held at the Andaz London Liverpool Street.
• Over the last ten years we have produced more plastic than during the whole of the last century.
• 50 percent of the plastic we use, we use just once and throw away.
• Enough plastic is thrown away each year to circle the earth four times.
• We currently recover only five percent of the plastics we produce.
• Plastic accounts for around 10 percent of the total waste we generate.
• Americans, for example, throw away 35 billion plastic water bottles every year (source: Brita)
• Plastic in the ocean breaks down into such small segments that pieces of plastic from a one liter bottle could end up on every mile of beach throughout the world.
• It takes 500-1,000 years for plastic to degrade.
Images by Chris Daw