One Dress, Countless Looks
Thanks to endless fashion magazines, countless style blogs, and a zillion reality shows on the topic - everyone's suddenly a fashion expert...which is enough to make any fashion expert contemplate other pursuits. Before it comes to that, simplify! Mal Sirrah recently curated the "One-Dress" project, a collaboration with over 1000 women from across the globe, all social-media'ing via Facebook, MySpace, aSmallWorld, and Twitter to share info about their lifestyles, dreams, and desires as they relate to dresses. Sharing their likes and dislikes in fabrics, colors, necklines, and silhouettes, a single, universal dress was conceived. Made from 100% silk knit jersey and available in four colors, it can be draped and wrapped as many ways as you can imagine; best of all, a portion of the proceeds benefit WOMANKIND Worldwide, a charity devoted to helping impoverished women improve their lives and lift their families and communities out of poverty.
Interestingly, this single-dress idea is picking up supporters as a way to make a stylish statement against rampant consumerism and mass-marketed McTaste. For her Uniform Project, Sheena Matheiken is wearing the same Eliza Starbuck dress every day for a year as an exercise in sustainable fashion inspired by her Catholic School Uniform-clad childhood:
"Despite the imposed conformity, kids always found a way to bend the rules and flaunt a little personality...I now want to put the same rules to test again, only this time I'm trading in the catholic school fervor for an eBay addiction and relocating the school walls to this wonderful place called the internet." It's also functioning as a year-long fundraiser for The Akanksha Foundation, which brings education to slum children in India. (via NBC Miami & Racked)
Seattle artist Alex Martin previously designed and sewed a single Little Brown Dress that she wore everyday for a year, with the added constraint that anything she wore it with - accessories, shoes, layers - was already either in her wardrobe already or second-hand in origin. Dipping temperatures necessitated an emergency run to Goodwill for two sweaters, but remarkably, she only spent $20 on clothing during the entire year! "In this performance, I challenged myself to reject the economic system that pushes over-consumption, and the bill of goods that has been sold, especially to women, about what makes a person good, attractive and interesting," she explains about her mono-dress version of fashion detox. "Clothes are a big part of this image, and the expectation in time, effort, and financial investment is immense."
- Lesley Scott
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