Frida Giannini on Helping Out, Fashion Scenario

Gucci’s former creative designer continues to support causes dear to her, most recently mental health, while observing the industry and giving a …

MILAN — Fashion continues to be in Frida Giannini’s heart, but Gucci’s former creative director is today focused on channeling her energies into projects that are dear to her. And from her observation point, she is candidly giving a shoutout to her friend Maria Grazia Chiuri, while she hopes pure luxury will return and edge out all streetwear and untrained designers.

Giannini, who is a member of the board of Save the Children and has for years supported UNICEF, receiving in 2011 the UNICEF Women of Compassion award, is the godmother of a photo exhibition organized by association Angelo Azzurro that is part of the A-HEAD project, opening on Oct. 23 in Rome and running until Nov. 2. Called “Circuiti,” the exhibit displays photos by Luca Centola.

While at the creative helm of Gucci, which she exited in January 2015, the Roman designer made social issues a focus both for the brand and for herself. In particular, in 2013 together with Beyoncé Knowles and Salma Hayek Pinault, she and Gucci launched Chime for Change, created with the goal of supporting women’s and girls’ education, health services and justice.

In 2018, the designer made a brief comeback to fashion for a humanitarian project in partnership with retailer OVS, for which she created a Christmas capsule collection of sweaters benefiting the nonprofit association Save the Children.

While Italy is seeing a new wave of COVID-19 infections, Giannini said organizers of the photo exhibition were doing everything in their power to make sure it would take place, with all the due precautions, as it is a fundraiser.

Through A-HEAD, and several initiatives dedicated to contemporary art, Angelo Azzurro aims to help people understand mental health through the arts.

“Mental health is an issue that is often ignored, it’s sneaky and many times it’s invisible, it does not leave visible scars, but they are there,” said Giannini from her home in Rome. “This is a new project for me, after years devoted to shining the light on war children and hunger. Sometimes families do not understand what mental health is or they are ashamed to tackle the problem.” Victims can be children, bullied for example; adolescents affected by eating disorders, or adults. The pandemic has affected people tremendously, she continued. “With the lockdown, there’s been a huge surge of anxiety, depression, panic attacks. It’s a disturbing moment for everyone, even those that are solid.”

The intention of the exhibit is to reinforce the fight against the stigma often associated with mental health issues. “If someone has problems, they are either considered strange or crazy and they are not seen as patients, which leads to marginalization. These individuals have a hard time finding a job or to continue their studies, some don’t have the money or the ability to see a psychiatrist, and our goal is to be near them, they should not be left alone, ” Giannini continued. “They are helped to be integrated in society through the development of new creative skills,” she explained.

Creativity remains central in Giannini’s life, although she has been out of the fashion limelight since her exit from Gucci. She admitted she’s had “silent consultancies” with a few brands, and that she has been helping the team at Golden Goose, as reported. “I’ve been a customer and a fan of the brand early on and for years,” she said. “I have a beautiful friendly relationship with the team and I’ve been greeted there as a member of the Golden Goose family.”

Her own family has been through some changes, since Giannini is separating from her husband, Patrizio di Marco, a former Gucci chairman and chief executive officer and also a former chairman of Golden Goose, with whom she shares a daughter.

Asked if she is planning a comeback with a designer brand, Giannini admitted she does “not have anything on the table,” and expressed her doubts about the fashion scenario.

“I find there’s a lot of confusion and uncertainties, and lots of copycat designs. I see a lot of improvisation, designers that have no experience and brands that rely on the number of [social media] followers in their choice of creative heads,” she contended. “And so many designers are working far from the artisans, or for more than one brand, I don’t understand that.”

Giannini also expressed her frustration at the amount of streetwear in fashion. “Enough, let’s return to beautiful, luxurious products, materials and hides. I think after the pandemic people will want to return to dress well and lots of useless things will disappear. Shopping we all know is therapeutic, but you want to buy beautiful pieces, and not only because they are fashionable.”

She singled out the work of her friend Maria Grazia Chiuri, artistic director of women’s collections at Dior, however. “She is talented and she proves that you can design beautiful things that sell, not only key chains but also coats, ready-to-wear, bags that you see people actually wear. Dior is performing so well despite the difficulties, and I am very happy for her success. I still believe this industry is sexist, so I am very happy that a woman has the space to express herself,” Giannini said.

Salvatore Ferragamo creative director Paul Andrews: ‘I’m totally changing everything’

It was a brave choice on the part of Lemmi given that Andrew had never before designed ready-to-wear, let alone men’s clothing. “For me, design is …

There’s always a moment during men’s fashion month – the merry-go-round of shows and presentations in London, Milan, Florence and Paris – when the accumulated buyers and members of the press collectively pause and feel thankful to be doing the jobs that they do. Some seasons, it might be the unveiling of an extraordinary shoe (remember when the furry Princetown slippers first flopped down the Gucci runway in January 2015? Ye gods!); others, it might be as simple as a fantastic brand-hosted meal (even the most uninspiring round of menswear shows can be lifted by a plate of pasta al telefono from Milanese bistro Bice); and sometimes, if we’re really lucky, it might be an amazing show, an entire collection so zeitgeist-defining and fresh in perspective that it takes the breath away.

For the AW20 season show, that moment came at 11am on Sunday 12 January within the monastic surrounds of Milan’s Rotonda Della Besana. Paul Andrew, the nascent British creative director of Salvatore Ferragamo, mounted his second men’s-focused outing for the brand. Buyers nodded in silent approval – eyebrows raised and mouths turned down – as the bobby pin-thin models walked past, while influencers Instagrammed feverishly about the looks they most loved. Even this magazine’s inscrutable Editor-In-Chief, Dylan Jones, was effusive in his praise. “That was great,” he whispered in my ear as the show’s thumping soundtrack died away. “We should write about him.”

© Photo: Alessandro Lucioni / Gorunway.com

An ultra-modern paean to all things leather, Andrew’s AW20 collection was a hard-edged collection with a soft, supple heart. Slick napa trousers in burnt caramel rubbed hems with tonal, heavy-gauge sweaters, while black leather T-shirts were teamed with trousers cut from the same fabric. Other highlights included a leather one-piece that had a sexed-up sewage worker vibe about it (below) and an oversized nana cardigan made from the finest cashmere. These were clothes imbued with a certain Italian elegance, yes, but also a new sense of modernity never before seen on the Ferragamo runway. What’s more, Andrew managed to dextrously walk the line between Ferragamo’s leather-working tradition and his own, considerably more contemporary vision. No small feat, given that Ferragamo has, over the past four decades or so, established itself as something of a high-luxury all-rounder.

Indeed, type “#Ferragamo” into the search function on Instagram and take a scroll through the 12.4 million posts that pop up. A high-colour mishmash of luxury pool sliders, OOTDs, Nigerian shoe resellers and Chinese influencers wearing the brand’s classic Gancini belts, it’s a convenient way to get an insight into the extraordinarily wide bandwidth with which the 93-year-old Florentine label operates.

Compare said algorithmic gathering with that of, say, #BottegaVeneta, which simmers to the surface countless moody-hued shots of the brand’s now iconic woven Cassette bag and girls in clompy shoes. Or, indeed, take a look at #Gucci, which instantly made my phone screen look like a pixelated G-G monogram rainbow. By contrast, Ferragamo’s product range is as wide as its customer base and that is as much a blessing for Andrew as it is a curse.

‘I’m totally changing everything: when we show, how we show, how much we show. It all has to change’

“Everyone from 18 to 80 is buying Ferragamo,” Andrew tells me when we meet over Zoom in the middle of the UK’s Covid-19-induced lockdown. Andrew is in his flat in Florence and his springy blond hair (which is clearly longer than he would like it to be) is brushed as flat as the vowels in his transatlantic burr. He also seems relaxed – or as relaxed as one can hope to be when being -interrogated over video call with an infernal international delay. “You’ve got super-conservative old ladies buying their Vara Bow shoes and then you’ve got young African-American hip-hop guys buying the Gancini belts,” he says. “And then you’ve got all that’s in between.”

Appointed as creative director of the entire Ferragamo brand – which comprises womenswear, menswear, accessories, shoes and, of course, belts – in early 2019, 41-year-old Andrew’s ascent into fashion’s upper echelons has been as smooth as it’s been speedy. Raised in the Home Counties by his upholsterer-to-royalty father and technology executive mother, Andrew’s childhood was an average, if creatively infused, one. “Growing up in Berkshire in the 1980s I was always begging my parents to take me into London to watch the amazing skyscrapers going up in Canary Wharf,” he tells me. “Afterwards, I’d go home and draw them in super graphic detail.

© Photo: Alessandro Lucioni / Gorunway.com

“Everyone thought I was going to be an architect, but I remember an architect friend of my mum’s came over and she told me that it can be decades before you see anything you’ve designed come to fruition – and sometimes never at all. That depressed me so much that I fell into fashion,” he says, laughing. “I started buying fashion magazines and plastering the images all over my wall, much to the chagrin of my parents, and footwear just seemed like an interesting combination of those two interests. The way you think about and construct footwear is much the same as you’d think about designing a building.”

Naturally, Andrew went on to study fashion and footwear design at the Berkshire College Of Art And Design (now Reading College), where his graduate collection caught the attention of buyer and consultant Yasmin Sewell, who introduced him to the design team at Alexander McQueen. An apprenticeship at the British label ensued (“Though this was in the 1990s, when there was no cash, so at some point my dad said I had to get a job that actually paid money!”), but it was really a subsequent trip to the States that sealed Andrew’s fate. “American Vogue ran a story and invited me to come to meet some designers who’d asked Anna [Wintour] about me,” he says.

‘Men’s collections are about archetypes: soldiers, surfers, bikers…’

What followed were stints working in the shoe and accessories departments of arch-American super-brands Narciso Rodriguez, Calvin Klein and Donna Karan. It was in 2012, however, the year that Andrew founded his eponymous footwear label, in New York, that his star really entered the ascendant. “I did women’s shoes first and then I launched men’s a couple of years later,” he says quickly, brushing over his achievements – from what I can gauge of Andrew through the low-res medium of Zoom, he seems unassuming, shy almost. “And then I won the 2014 CFDA [Council Of Fashion Designers Of America] award for my work.”

And what work, minimal yet sculptural. At his own brand, Andrew specialised in grown-up stiletto boots, low-key kitten heel mules and architecturally infused pumps for women, while for the guys the look was as chunky as it was serviceable. I bought a pair of Andrew’s glossy oxblood leather loafers with two-inch platform soles around five years ago (they give just the right amount of edge to a classic black suit) and I still wear them to this day.

It was two years after his CFDA win, in 2016, that Ferragamo came knocking. “I went to Florence and met the family and the executive committee,” he tells me. “And I decided to join as creative director of women’s shoes.” A pause. “It wasn’t until a year ago that I took the hard but necessary decision to pause my own brand, because the stress of managing two companies was really too much.” Galling though Andrew’s sacrifice undoubtedly must have been, it’s easy to see why the Ferragamo family chose the designer to helm the most important pillar of its brand (a brand that currently boasts 654 stores in more than 90 countries). The similarities between Andrew and its late patriarch, founder Salvatore Ferragamo, are difficult to ignore.

Born in 1898 in the southern Italian village of Bonito, Ferragamo – the eleventh of 14 children – cut his teeth as a teenage footwear apprentice in Naples before moving to America to hone his craft. In 1927 Ferragamo returned to Italy and founded his eponymous footwear company in Florence. It was during this period that the young designer started producing the soaringly innovative architectural shoes with which the brand made its name in the middle of the 20th century. Ferragamo’s focus was on comfort as much as design (“Elegance and comfort are not incompatible and whoever maintains the contrary simply doesn’t know what he’s talking about,” he famously once said) and his shoes became icons of on-foot innovation at the time.

‘You’ll never see me do massive sneakers with “Ferragamo” on the side. It seems lazy’

Scallop-shaped boots made of antelope leather were finished with horned uppers and platform wedges came complete with towering rainbow soles. These were shoes that wouldn’t have looked out of place on the McQueen catwalks of the mid-2000s – or, for that matter, lining the shelves of a Paul Andrew store in 2014. “What Ferragamo did in the first half of the century was really beyond avant-garde,” Andrew tells me. “In the years after he died, the company became more of a powerhouse, more of a conservative heritage brand, and part of what I’m trying to do is find the balance” – he pauses, looking down – “introducing the ‘fashion’ side of things while maintaining classicism.”

In 2017, Andrew was promoted to director of the entire womenswear division at Ferragamo, where his capacious duster coats crafted from syrupy leathers and simple architectural shirts quickly caught the hawkish eyes and sizeable bank accounts of the coiffed European elite. But our story really begins at the moment early last year when Andrew was appointed to his current role and menswear entered his repertoire.

“Paul is the natural creative leader of the Salvatore Ferragamo house as we enter a new phase of evolution and growth,” said Ferragamo’s chief executive officer, Micaela Le Divelec Lemmi, at the time. It was a brave choice on the part of Lemmi given that Andrew had never before designed ready-to-wear, let alone men’s clothing. “For me, design is design,” says Andrew, when I probe. “The reason they made me the creative director of Ferragamo women in the first place was because I had such a clear vision of what that woman should look like and it wasn’t related to the shoes I was designing and that we were actually selling,” he continues. “In the conversations I was having with my menswear design director, Guillaume [Meilland], I realised we had a vision for the new Ferragamo man and how to bring the brand forward. We are a shoes and accessories brand, but I have grand ambitions to change that. Why should we not have more success in ready-to-wear? It’s already starting to happen: we’ve had great responses from our retail partners and it’s already expanding in volume into the stores.”

Andrew mounted his first menswear collection (SS20) for the brand in Florence – during the Pitti Uomo menswear fair – on a sticky June day last year. Shown as part of the womenswear collection it was a crisp-edged capsule of utilitarian cargo pants and flak vests in sotto voce hues. Clean and approachable, with a similar kind of soft luxury to Hermès and Bottega Veneta, the collection, which also featured lambskin trousers (as one would expect from a leather goods brand) aplenty, set a cautiously optimistic tone.

It was his aforementioned AW20 offering, however, that really caught the world’s attention. And it’s about this collection, which has hit stores now, that Andrew is his most effusive: “I think the ambition of the company is to build on the strength of our shoes and accessories and to keep that going, but they could also see that we were already doing very expensive fashion shows so why not turn that into a commercial endeavour rather than just a showcase for the shoes and bags?” Andrew questions. “My idea is to bring in a guy who isn’t just a Wall Street business dude buying a briefcase and a conservative pair of shoes. I also want to bring in a younger fashion client who’s going to be the future of Ferragamo.”

‘The family is engaged and very open about what is happening today in fashion’

There’s an art to visualising the man for whom one is designing clothes, to getting under the skin of who he is and what he wants, and it’s an art that, if mastered, can make a fashion company an awful lot of money very quickly indeed. Alessandro Michele took Gucci from low-billions bit player to global superbrand in a few short years by peddling endless colourful confections for his own magpie-esque man, while Kim Jones at Dior has got the showy-yet-chic profile of his male customer down pat. Who, I wonder, will Andrew’s uomo ideale turn out to be? “When you think about a women’s collection, it tends to be more about a period of time – like it’s going to be more 1960s silhouettes or more 1970s shapes. But with men’s it’s never really about that,” he tells me. “It’s all about archetypes for guys. So for this season I set out my masculine archetypes: the soldier, the surfer, the racing car driver, the sailor, the biker and the businessman. And when you look at the sartorial codes of those characters, that’s kind of what you get with the Fall/Winter 2020 collection. It’s like he’s wearing a surfer’s pant with a businessman’s coat or a biker’s overall with a soldier’s jacket. When you know those are the references, you see them come out in the collection.”

It’s a clever move. Where women are often more likely to buy wholesale into new trends and concepts early on – sophisticated in their ability to pick out what they like and ignore what they don’t – men, traditionally speaking at least, tend to be less willing to deviate from what they know. There’s a reason, after all, that the military aesthetic comes back around in menswear pretty much every season and it’s the same reason you’ll never attend an Autumn/Winter fashion week in Milan and not see at least five versions of a peacoat. Men love things that function and it’s an added bonus if they look good too.

What’s more, it’s a trick that will make the great coats, overalls and double-breasted suits that punctuated Andrew’s second solo menswear show seem all the more desirable to the real men buying those briefcases and conservative shoes in Ferragamo’s stores.

Ferragamo is, by any definition, a fashion megalith. On 31 December 2019 the company registered an annual turnover of £1.23 billion. With much of this income being the result of Ferragamo’s extraordinarily wide customer base, how does Andrew plan to strike the balance, I wonder. “It’s not easy,” he says with a smile, dragging his fingers through his hair. “The collection has to be constructed with all these different consumer groups in mind and you can’t lean too far one way or the other in case you alienate certain people, but I think we’ve done a good job of balancing the classic with the contemporary. There’s space for products that are going to relate to a fashion consumer more like us,” he adds, gesticulating in my direction down the barrel of the lens.

Does that mean Andrew, like every other fashion designer in the world right now, will be producing a chunky dad sneaker for Ferragamo? “I’m definitely not into the idea of sportswear at Ferragamo. I don’t think it’s a reference that works for the house. You’re never going to see me do hoodies and sweatpants and massive sneakers with ‘Ferragamo’ on the side,” he says, suddenly serious (or at least I think he’s being serious; it might just be my screen glitching). “It just seems lazy and inappropriate for a brand with this sort of heritage and history. So, for me, it’s more about twisting the classics. And I’ve been more inspired by workwear – that’s come more into the collection.”

‘My concept now is to do less but better, to produce pieces that stand the test of time’

It’s no secret that being the creative director of a major fashion company is a stressful business. Whispers of mental fragility and feuds circulate the upper echelons of fashion’s creative elite like smoke around the papal chimney. The problems are often only heightened when the brand for which said creative director works is still owned and controlled by the family who founded it. British designer Jonathan Saunders struggled as chief creative officer of Diane Von Furstenberg, where the namesake designer was still very much involved, leaving in 2017 after just a few seasons; Tom Ford and Yves Saint Laurent famously feuded when the former was appointed creative director of the latter’s eponymous brand. How, I ask Andrew, is he finding working for a company where key members of the namesake family are still so present.

His answer, when it comes, is as measured as the positioning of knick-knacks on the midcentury shelf framed behind his head. “The family is very involved,” he says with a wry smile. “There are several members of the family that are still involved that were part of creating the Ferragamo business at the very beginning. Mr Ferruccio Ferragamo, who is the president of the company, Salvatore’s son, he’s the one responsible for building it into a billion-dollar business, with his mother,” says Andrew, slowly. “They’re very engaged and it’s great to have their feedback and insight because they built this company.” He pauses. “But they did bring me on as the creative director and one has to inform them about what is happening today in fashion. They’re very open about that and there’s a really great back-and-forth.”

Zoom has just informed me that Andrew and I are almost at the end of our time together, but given that we’re in the process of entering the worst global recession in anyone’s lifetime and that fashion has taken a particularly hard hit during the pandemic – with production stalled and show systems irreparably disrupted – I’m eager to hear how Andrew thinks his industry and, more specifically, Ferragamo’s role within it will shift once things return to normal, whatever that normal may be.

“I’m not at liberty to speak about it much yet, but I’m totally changing everything: when we show, how we show, how much we show. It all has to change,” Andrew tumbles. “The way we worked before was crippling. It was broken. We worked every hour God sent, but for what?” He shrugs. “My concept now, which is totally backed up by the executive team, is to do less but better. Our place in the landscape is to continue producing pieces of a really high quality and level of craftsmanship and things that will stand the test of time.”

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Bolt Threads partners with Adidas, owners of Balenciaga and Gucci, and Stella McCartney on …

Investors in Bolt Threads include Foundation Capital, Baillie Gifford, Founders Fund, Formation 8 and the Nan Fung Group, a privately held, Hong …

Bolt Threads has brought together some new and existing partners, including Stella McCartney, Kering (the fashion house behind brands like Balenciaga, Gucci, Alexander McQueen and Bottega Veneta), Lululemon and Adidas to create a consortium that will explore the company’s use of its mushroom-based leather substitute in products, the company said.

These companies will be among the first to bring products made with Bolt Threads’ mushroom-based leather substitute to market in 2021, the company said.

“I have always been convinced that innovation is key to addressing the sustainability challenge that luxury is facing. Finding innovative, alternative materials and fabrics can potentially drastically reduce the environmental impact of our industry over the long term,” François-Henri Pinault, the chairman and chief executive of Kering, said in a statement.

The announcement is the culmination of at least two years of work from Bolt Threads, which first announced it would join the hunt for a leather substitute in 2018. The company announced its first product soon after — a $400 “Driver Bag” designed in conjunction with the Portland-based bag company, Chester Wallace.

The company, which has raised over $200 million since its launch nearly 11 years ago, faces some pretty tough competition. Companies like MycoWorks and Modern Meadow both have alternative leather products in the works. However, these partnerships may go a long way toward separating Bolt from the rest of the herd.

Swatches of Bolt Threads mushroom leather product, “Mylo.” Image Credit: Bolt Threads

Investors in Bolt Threads include Foundation Capital, Baillie Gifford, Founders Fund, Formation 8 and the Nan Fung Group, a privately held, Hong Kong-based conglomerate with significant holdings in the textile and fashion industry.

What the redoubled interest in leather goods means for the alternative spider silk that was the company’s original product is unclear. There hasn’t been much news on the silk front since the company debuted its $314 necktie back in 2017.

There’s clearly interest in the fashion industry’s ability to clean up. Consumers are demanding it, and new brands focused on sustainability are launching regularly.

As Reducetarian Foundation president and co-founder Brian Kateman wrote last year, “traditional fashion is killing the planet”:

Every year, the textile industry alone spits out 1.2 billion tons of greenhouse gases — more than all marine shipping vessels and international flights combined — and consumes 98 million tons of oil. Textile dyeing is the second-largest polluter of clean water, and on the whole, the apparel industry accounts for 10 percent of all greenhouse emissions worldwide. Worst of all, the clothes produced by this massive resource consumption produces clothes are rapidly discarded: In 2015, 73 percent of the total material used to make clothes ended up incinerated or landfilled, according to a study by the Ellen MacArthur foundation.

How LV, Gucci, And Prada Are Leveraging Blockchain Technology

Blockchain seems to be the best solution for getting rid of counterfeit products. The distributed ledger technology, when applied in the fashion industry, …
How LV, Gucci, And Prada Are Leveraging Blockchain TechnologyHow LV, Gucci, And Prada Are Leveraging Blockchain Technology

In a market full of fakes, it’s difficult to identify an original. The line correctly represents the current situation of today’s fashion markets. Many people from the middle or lower class families can’t afford to buy large fashion brands such as Gucci and LV and a lot of them are unaware that such brands even exist.

However, largely considering the Indian context, the streets today are filled with people carrying Michael Kors bags, wearing Gucci apparel or Adidas shoes not knowing that those are just counterfeits. Some of those fake products are perfect replicas of the actual brand or designers that it’s hard to tell the difference.

On one hand, the affordability of these replicas has made them so likeable for some groups, that they prefer to purchase them knowing that they aren’t the real brands. On the other hand, there’s a class of people in some countries like India, that are unaware of big brand names and designer wear or can’t care more to understand the difference, that they end up wearing Abibas t-shirts or shoes with two brand names written on them.

Many people experience fraud when they order a brand but receive a copy or a low-quality material. But the question is, how does this impact the brands as well as the consumers?

The Impact of Counterfeits

Counterfeits are causing problems for authentic brands as well as consumers. Not only do they steal sales of brands by offering products at significantly low prices, but they also damage the brand’s reputation by offering low-quality products that consumers believe are authentic.

Low-quality products damage the trust of consumers in the product and also the business partners of the brand. Irate customers, unhappy with the quality of the product they receive ask for refunds or exchanges of counterfeited products from authentic brands, ending up in a chaotic situation. Ultimately, brands have to spend more to fight against fakes.

This whole situation not only wastes time and money of the brands and consumers but also leaves no inspiration for designers and brands to focus on their project’s growth. It causes long-lasting damage to the brand.

The Blockchain Solution for Brands

Blockchain seems to be the best solution for getting rid of counterfeit products. The distributed ledger technology, when applied in the fashion industry, can save authentic brands and designers from the prying eyes of fake producers. Many projects are now considering implementing the technology into the fashion industry to provide transparency, security, and authenticity to both the designers as well as the end consumers.

One such project that is utilizing the potential of blockchain technology is Curate. Curate was found with the intention of providing users easy access to exclusive and unique fashion pieces produced by small and large retailers and designers. It is a style discovery decentralized app based on blockchain technology that rewards all users with cryptocurrencies such as ETH, BTC and its native token CUR8, for contributing to the platform.

Brands and retailers like LV, Zara, Gucci, Prada, and Amazon have partnered with Curate to leverage blockchain technology used on the platform. The technology protects brands against their customers being exposed to fraud and the risk of buying counterfeit products through a remote frequency identification protocol integrated into the system.

The RFID smart tags attached to materials can be scanned by the users to confirm the genuineness and authenticity of the product they have purchased. Uses can use the camera on their mobile devices to scan the code and pull out the history of the material.

This unique feature not only helps the customers in buying authentic brands but also protects the reputation of brands from being damaged due to counterfeits. The history of the fabric also helps consumers who don’t prefer buying clothing that’s manufactured at the cost of the environment. The platform further helps designers, irrespective of large or small, to gain recognition and awareness by trending on the basis of ratings and upvotes received by the users.

Conclusion

Blockchain has come as a savior for small designers as well as large brands. It has the potential to solve the flaws in the fashion industry and protect consumers against fraud. Projects integrating blockchain with the fashion industry will be of great use in countries like India, where counterfeit products cover a major proportion of the market.

France to Lead Global Fashion Sustainability Effort

… “exerting an unprecedented strain on planetary resources” by raising annual production of fashion to more than 100 million tons, the report said.

France is taking aim at fashion’s heavy environmental footprint with a global industry sustainability initiative.

French President Emmanuel Macron has tapped Kering SA Chief Executive Officer Francois-Henri Pinault to lead the effort. Paris-based Kering is the parent company of several luxury fashion brands, including Gucci, Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, Bottega Veneta, and Alexander McQueen.

France, where luxury fashion is a lucrative sector, wants brands from around the world to commit to progress on issues including ocean health, biodiversity and climate change during this summer’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz. Specific targets could include eliminating disposable plastics within three years or converting to renewable energy sources by 2030, Pinault said in an interview at a conference in Copenhagen.

“All of the major actors are working on these issues,” said Pinault. “The problem is that doing everything separately we don’t have the impact that we should.”