The fashion show, the final event of the project, was held on Friday, June 23, at the Podiani Hall of the Umbria National Gallery in Perugia. The young designers of the Italian Design Institute (IID) produced 5 collections inspired by the green jobs, using materials of forestry origin such as cypress yarn, mushroom skin, eucalyptus and beech cellulose wafers (lyocell, modal and viscose), woven fabrics of wood and cork fabrics.
With this project we have sought not only to make fashion and design tools for enhancing the forest-wood chain but also to create a valid alternative to the raw materials used in the fashion industry. The choice to communicate sustainability through the fashion channel is also derived from the recent data showing the high environmental and social impact of this sector.
Globally, the fashion industry is estimated at 1.7 trillion USD and employs more than 75 million people. About half of this production is made up of cotton fibers, while the majority of the rest concerns synthetic fibers from fossil fuels. With the increasing concern over the improper use of limited water resources, pesticide abuse and fossil-fuel related issues, the use of certified fibers derived from a sustainable forestry site is a great opportunity not to adversely affect the environment.
Attention to environmental protection has also a significant effect on cellulose-based tissue production processes that, from viscose and modal to lyocell, have been less impacting in terms of resource consumption and thanks to the use of non-polluting chemical reagents. Today, lyocell production, compared to cotton fabrics, requires 70 times lower water consumption and reduces CO2 emissions by 10 times (source: Kalt and Zauner, 2001; Shen and Patel, 2010). Moreover, the production of this type of cellulosic tissue does not necessarily require the cut of trees since it can use as raw material the production waste resulting from wood processing.
The promotion of sustainability in fashion has been one of the goals that PEFC Italy has set itself over the past few years, continuing the Forest for Fashion project. With this project, funded by PEFC International and realized in collaboration with the Italian Design Institute of Perugia (IID), PEFC Italy wanted to promote the potential of certified forestry materials in the field of fashion by creating a collection of clothing and accessories. This result was also due to the support of partner companies that believe and support this goal like PEFC: Alceste shoes (Italy) shoes and wooden and cork items, ArtigianMobili (Italy) wooden furnishings and items, A. Sampaio & Filhos (Portugal) clothing and fabrics, Dolpi (Italy) manufacturer of glasses, Granorte (Portugal) cork producer, Lenzing (Austria) manufacturer of certified cellulose fibers.