Designers Talk Eco Fashion at Christie's Bid to Save the Earth

We asked designers and luminaries at last night's environmental fundraiser, "Runway to Green," about the challenges involved in taking fashion into the green.

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Marcus Wainwright, Rag & Bone
n"It's actually very easy to make the garment -- fabric is the hardest thing. Finding a fabric that's eco-friendly, and what defines eco-friendly is pretty difficult. It's difficult to find something that's really nice, but, you know, it's not that difficult.
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Keren Craig, Marchesa
n"Obviously, there's a lot to think about when it comes to making a garment that's green, so we were very excited to be involved tonight and make a dress. We've got a dress on the runway tonight that's actually a red dress, it's a cocktail dress. But we're excited to be involved and really think about taking things forward for the future."
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Jason Wu, with Diane Kruger
n"The goal today was not only to bring attention to RTG but it's also about educating consumers about how the green process works ... I myself have learned so many things about the process, from dying of fabrics to eliminating as much air shipment as possible to creating garments that need as little dry cleaning as possible ... It goes so much further than just fabric it's about entire process. I focus on creating pieces that are timeless and that aren't throwaway pieces. They're pieces that really will last a lifetime. That's a very green initiative, because that will ensure that we eliminate the possibility of throwing away our things."
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Rachel Roy
n"Actually, it wasn't as hard as what one might think to make a green garment. Organic fabric, recyclable fabric is readily available and I found mine—it was made out of recyclable plastics. I also found a factory in Italy that also uses recyclable plastics. It's a matter of doing the research, it's a matter of asking the questions, it's a matter of pushing. I designed my piece for the runway tonight because I didn't want it to necessarily look green or organic, I wanted it to look like a staple, something that could be in anyone's wardrobe. I wanted to show how you can incorporate organic or green into your everyday life and not have it necessarily be a costume."
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Lauren Bush, with David Lauren
n"It's about doing a lot of research and really knowing where your materials come from. And I think the thing to realize is that nothing is perfectly good for the environment. Everything we make is wasteful, yet there are so many great materials and fabrics and innovations out there that it is easier to make greener and better ... When it comes to green fashion trends, the reusable bag movement with FEED is something I personally care about. But the fabrications out there that are made with hemp silk and organic cottons and I think there's a lot out there that can be used—it may cost a bit more or is a bit harder to find, but I think it's definitely more sustainable in the long run."
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Jenna Lyons, Creative Director, J. Crewn
"When you look at the life span of a garment—say, a pair of jeans—what you do with it when you get home is actually sometimes more environmentally unfriendly than actually making the garment ... I had no idea how much how big our carbon footprint was until I started to look at it. We have a green committee at J. Crew that's really looking at everything internally at how we do everything from, as I said, the processing of the fabric, the shipping of the fabric, the garment, all that."
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Angela Lindvall, Model, with John Hardy Designer, Guy Bedarida
n"For a long time as an environmentalist myself, I've really wanted to see the fashion industry engage on a larger level, so we've got the art world and the fashion world here tonight. They make such a huge impact in cultivating culture and change this is it's important for us to be aware of our choices and the environment and what we're doing. So, for these two worlds to take initiative, it's great. All the products I buy are eco-friendly, and I try to invest in the companies I know are doing sustainable things. I'm working for companies like John Hardy, who's been a sustainable company for a long time—way before it was trendy—they use recycled silver and gold and are re-planting bamboo for the collections that are made from bamboo."
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