ORSOLA DE CASTRO & JOCELYN WHIPPLE - fashion revolution is changing the culture of fashion

ORSOLA DE CASTRO & JOCELYN WHIPPLE - fashion revolution is changing the culture of fashion

Within the sustainable fashion movement, Fashion Revolution needs no introduction. However what still intrigues me is how some people who work in fashion and consumers haven’t heard of Fashion Revolution, the Fashion Transparency Index or their worldwide campaign #whomademyclothes With more time and funding this will certainly change. 

I was introduced to Orsola de Castro, Fashion Revolution Co-founder and Jocelyn (Joss) Whipple, Fashion Revolution Country Coordinators Liaison, by an old friend of mine, Roxy Housmand-Howell, founder of The Right Project (a consultancy agency with clients including; Ninety Percent, Fashion Revolution, Sunshine Bertrand and Patternity). Joss also happens to be a sister of my lovely friend Ondine, who has a beautiful ethical lifestyle brand Ondine Ash

Connections within the fashion industry run deep, especially for those people who look beyond profit, vanity and ego. Lifelong friendships and sisterhood are beginning to deconstruct hierarchy, patriarchy and barriers formed through elitism and exclusion. 

As part of an exploration into the culture of fashion, in this podcast we talk to Orsola and Joss about the way in which the fashion industry is formed and how that plays out for; factory workers, who are mainly women, the existing fashion establishment and the next generation of fashion creatives.

Listen to podcast above, on iTunesSoundCloud or Stitcher

This is an industry that is based on elitism, on closed doors and suddenly here we are saying (because of transparency) nope, you now have to be open, you now have to collaborate, you now have to do things differently. And that changed the interface, the whole way that fashion has been operating for the last 30, 40 years.
— Orsola de Castro, Black Neon Digital Podcast Episode 18
 Pages 4-5 of Fashion Revolution fanzine #001 By  Sarah C Grace

Pages 4-5 of Fashion Revolution fanzine #001 By Sarah C Grace

There is still a really serious disconnect between a designers job and the manufacturing. And there’s still such a lack of insight into what it actually means to design a product and have it made. And what we are trying to do with fashion revolution is reconnect those links and instil in young designers and people within the industry the real human connections and what the impacts are of your decision making.
— Jocelyn Whipple, Black Neon Digital Podcast Episode 18
 Orsola de Castro and Joss Whipple

Orsola de Castro and Joss Whipple

The birth of the fashion industry within the industrial revolution was born exploitative.
Cotton was produced by slaves in Africa it was then sent here to be processed by children in sweatshops to be sold via the East India Company. A terrible start. But the point is that we need this evolution. And across its history, there have been pockets where this industry was really interesting, really right, very female, very much about the craft of fashion.
— Orsola de Castro, Black Neon Digital Podcast Episode 18
 Carry Somers Co-founder, Fashion Revolution in Peru with embroiders by Miguel Lopez

Carry Somers Co-founder, Fashion Revolution in Peru with embroiders by Miguel Lopez

If fashion did what fashion has to do right women would be empowered. It’s a female industry, it’s been female since its first thread and yet it’s a technological industry. Because actually, most technological innovation comes in order to support the fashion and textile industry.
— Orsola de Castro, Black Neon Digital Podcast Episode 18

If we each take it upon ourselves to tell everyone about Fashion Revolution and what #whomademyclothes really means, then slowly but surely we’ll all be part of a fashion revolution.

portrait photos of orsola and joss taken by jodi muter-hamilton for black neon digital

other imagery courtesy of fashion revolution

podcast recorded at orsola’s home in south london 

why size is a big issue for fashion

why size is a big issue for fashion