Monday, June 22, 2015

B.A.F.F.L.E.D. Fashion Law

The True Cost:  A Fashion Documentary Behind Manufacturing--

While many see fashion and the industry at large to be frivolous and superficial, it's actually a billion-dollar market with many very serious issues.  Garment production is one of the most serious--especially when it comes to the working conditions employees are subject to.

The fast-fashion niche, you know--the likes of Forever 21, H&M, Zara, etc.--have created their own place in the industry.  This segment has many positives, particularly for young shoppers, shoppers on a budget, and anyone needing something trendy in a hurry.  However, negatives have come along with this market, too.  They've been on the receiving end of lawsuits for infringement on high fashion/designer styles, discriminatory hiring practices, and the labor conditions of their factories.  Fast-fashion is all about filling the racks in a hurry.  Someone has to make those garments--often under harsh conditions.

Things have changed drastically over the last few decades.  In the 1960s, 95% of American attire was made right here in the states.  Now, that number is flipped to about 97% produced overseas.  

Executive Producer Livia Firth of The True Cost, a documentary digging deep into a number of these issues, noted at the NY screening "We are sold this myth that to buy a dress for under $10 is democratic--but it's democratic for who?  We discard faster and faster, and that is how the consumer becomes poorer and poorer.  2 of the 10 richest men in the world are the owners of Zara and H&M.  I think it says a lot about how they make their money." 

Her film delves into the realities of factory workers in places like Bangladesh and Columbia.  It puts a face behind the garments so many throw on and throw away.  Stepping far behind the scenes of your favorite mall stop, you'll see a story behind every thread, of people who can't afford what they make, and what they endure during production.

Check the trailer. This is a must-see. 

The True Cost is currently available on iTunesAmazon, DVD, and Blu-ray.  

For more on labor issues in fashion, click here.

1 comment:

  1. I am so happy B.A.F.F.L.E.D. is still alive, thriving and passing along relevant, life-changing information. I just watched the "True Cost" movie trailer and it has really caused me to think twice before I buy and when deciding where to buy. (It reminded me of when I first found out how sugar is made. See that documentary trailer here: For clothes, reading where it was made on the label and doing research on the company is a possible first step. Any other tips for those who want to be ethical shoppers?


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