For the third year running, Livia Firth is bringing sustainable fashion to Hollywood's red carpets through her Green Carpet Challenge.
The successful eco-entrepreneur, fashionista, and wife of actor Colin Firth kicked things off Sunday night at the 69th Annual Golden Globe Awards by donning a stunning black Giorgio Armani gown made from recycled plastic bottles.
“When I put the dress on it felt incredible,” she wrote on her blog for Vogue UK. “It transports me to Italy in the 1960s. Armani just knows how to do this so well! There is also a really fun geisha reference in this dress with the ornate lining — very in line with the current Armani look. But the real achievement for me is that last night the GCC proved that sophistication and sustainability can go together. That’s the victory that Armani has delivered for us.”
Firth has elevated this year's challenge to include more than 10 top designers from around the world to contribute sustainable and ethical designs. Tom Ford, Gucci, Chanel, Armani, Yves, Saint Laurent, Stella McCartney, Paul Smith, Valentino, Roger Vivier, Alberta Ferretti and Ermenegildo Zegna are the names listed as participating throughout 2012.
“It is absolutely the right time to take the challenge up a gear, so we are working with our favorite world-class designers and actors as GCC ambassadors,” Firth writes. “Fashion is a brilliant communicator. The fashion we communicate through the GCC promotes social justice, environmental integrity and the very best in design.”
While the fashion industry has slowly been embracing sustainable practices over the last several years, the thrust of the movement has generally been from a new generation of designers like Stella McCartney. It's encouraging to see more established brands take the leap by teaming up with Firth for this year's greening of the runway.
“Livia’s passion for the mission of this project is infectious,” Gucci’s Frida Giannini said.”We all have a collective responsibility towards future generations to minimise our impact on the environment, and through this initiative we can hopefully show that you don’t have to make any compromises in design and creativity when working with environmentally friendly materials.”
For Firth's dress for the Globes, Armani used recycled plastic bottles sourced from Northern Italy to achieve the desired look and feel.
"Armani went for fibre from Newlife, a project developed by Filature Miroglio that takes place in Northern Italy," writes Green Carpet Challenge co-founder Lucy Siegle. "Rather than a vertical supply chain this has been developed horizontally through a system of certified partnerships, all in Italy. This means it's fully traceable — which gets a big thumbs up from the GCC. The end product — the yarn — is fully derived from recycled plastic bottles."
As referenced in the article, it requires about 30, 1.5-litre bottles to make 1 kilo (roughly 2.2 pounds) of Newlife yarn. According to the product site, the company hopes to produce 10,000 tons a year by 2015, thus avoiding adding some 72,000 tons of plastic material to landfills, and saving 343 million gallons of water for the creation of virgin material.
Since Hollywood's awards season has only just started, look for more sustainable fashion to grace the red carpet throughout 2012. Even better, Firth hopes to bring on some A-list actresses to participate.
Who would you like to see go green on the red carpet?
For more info, hit Firth's UK Vogue blog here.