When the pandemic called for a revamp of how we shop, events where you dressed up came to a halt. The growing trend of sustainable fashion started to grow, primarily online. I hope the “buying less and buying better” movement will become the new norm. Pandemics, fires, droughts, wildfires, and climate change are fast becoming the norm, though, and according to COP26, we are in a code red for humanity; what we are doing right now is shaping our future, and fashion is at the forefront.

The fashion industry is a massive part of our economy; the sector is growing and has doubled in the latter years. Fashion production makes up 10% of humanity’s carbon emissions; it pollutes our rivers, streams, oceans and dries up our water source. Every second, the equivalent of a rubbish truck load of clothes is burnt or buried in a landfill. 85% of all textile fibres go to a dump every year; washing certain clothes sends microplastics into our ocean, which does not prosper well; for humans! What about all the factory workers, the negligence to pay fair wages in the supply chain when production orders were cancelled? Have we lost our minds in the fashion industry where respect, due diligence for human rights and our environment is not on the top of our agenda!

In 2022, less than 10% of the material used to make clothes was recycled, the unsold stock was sent to landfills, and consumers continue to throw clothes out unworn or mindlessly. At aoife ®, waste management is a massive part of our design production. We design out waste at the design table, and we believe if this is not part of your design process as a designer, then you are adding to the problem of waste in the industry. The end-users are also responsible for this supply chain because they decide what is important to buy; they matter.

To counterbalance the negativity of what’s going on in the fast fashion industry, you have positive people in the fashion industry trying to unite people and fashion. Such as; The Fashion Revolution, Labour Behind the Label, Centre for Sustainable Fashion, New Standard of Institute, Climate Leaders Award, Garment Worker Protection act, Well Being of Future Generations Act 2015, International Accord, SDGs #IQuitFastFashionBecause, #stopthesqueeze, #wearnext, the list goes on…!

Today however I would like to talk about someone closer to home here in Ireland, one optimistic long-time visionary supporting Irish Fashion, Roxanne Parker, a renowned Irish fashion stylist.

She has styled shoots for U.K. bridal magazine Weddings, international brands such as Topman, as well as leading domestic brands such as Peter Mark, Paul Costello & Irish magazine titles- The GlossIrish Tatler & Irish Country MagazineLife MagazineWeekend Magazine & The Irish Times, with a background in print journalism and working in print media, T.V. and advertising. So it makes perfect sense with her understanding and multi-diverse skills that she is championing sustainable fashion practices and brands while creating a platform to bridge the gap for conscious consumers to buy mindfully. She does this so well as a sustainable stylist, with positivity, meaningful care, and concern for people and the planet. Roxanne is setting standards, working only with sustainable brands; she recently highlighted many sustainable and circular brands on Ireland AM. She is the proper lady to make substantial, sustainable changes in Ireland; she is a qualified journalist in media and print, with twenty years, of working as a stylist and recently securing a wardrobe on two big fox television shows, including “Name that Tune‘ . She is creating waves in the Irish sustainable fashion industry. I have had the pleasure of meeting Roxanne in person; it has been a lovely experience. I even met her lovely mum! I can safely say she’s authentic and passionate about style. She practices what she preaches, renovating her cottage in Co. Mayo from salvages and unique vintage artefacts, a labour of love! 

She is now taking her vision to the airwaves with her new podcast My Soul Styleand bridging the gap for consumers to buy from conscious Irish brands. She talks with brands who have a back story and brands that are proud and able to share it with you, giving insight into the stories behind the designers and brands, and she creates awareness for listeners to know what to look out for when purchasing their clothes.My Soul Style is a heart-felt, meaningful journey of Roxanne’s vicennial experience in the industry. She is passionate about helping people find their unique true soul style without complying with the traditional marketing fashion trends. She interviews innovative sustainable designers in the fashion industry striving for changes and actively creating them and she gives them a voice, a challenge for the fast-fashion giants; she shares her tips and highlights how consumers can shop consciously. She does this upliftingly, giving us a newfound respect for clothes and why we wear them; after all, true slow-sustainable fashion is that we can all feel really good about, which comes guilt-free. So, don’t miss out and have a listen. My Soul Style is available now on Spotify.

Best wishes Roxanne and thank you for having us as a guest on your talk show My Soul Style.