Upcyclers unite: Traidremade meets Alex Noble
Anyone who follows this blog will know I’m a massive fan of Alex Noble (read interview here). Apart from eyewatering stage designs for Florence Welch and Lady Gaga, Noble is co-founder of ethical fashion initiative Everything Must Go (here), which takes offcuts from catwalk designers - including hotshots Martine Rose, Ashley Williams and Agi & Sam - and turns them into covetable garments, profits to charity.
Now, he's teamed up with Traidremade to create a collection which is probably unique in ethical circles for its streetwise flair.
Given that both Noble and the fashion re-use charity like turning dirt into diamonds, up cycling and customising to create one-offs, their partnership seems inevitable.
‘Traidremade and Alex Noble complement each other perfectly. We both believe in the environmental, social and aesthetic power of using the resources we already have to create fashion,’ says Maria Chenoweth-Casey, Traidremade founder and CEO.
‘People want alternatives to the high street, and vitally, to buy clothes which don’t depend on the exploitation of people and the environment. Collaborations like this offer that alternative.’
For the 14-piece collection, ringingly called ‘Rights Of Massive’, Noble went back to the 1980s for inspiration, to streetwear movements such as Buffalo, Zoot and Punk and to muses Sade, Neneh Cherry, Willy Cartier and Kid ‘n’ Play.
‘The collection is a departure from the avant-garde stage costumes people know me for but a return to my roots of streetwear, tomboys and culture clash,’ says Alex. ‘I'm proud to be working with Traideremade. Their work is so inspiring.’
Panelled dungarees, boy-shorts, tartan trench suits, oversized shirts, box tees and hats provide the attitude; bespoke treated denim and one-off patched and painted sports jumpers finish the set. 'There are a few pieces which are specifically men’s or women’s but it’s mostly unisex,’ says Alex.
His favourite? A bleached corduroy bomber jacket. ‘I’m a big fan of a bomber,' he says. 'I took a military style bomber style jacket and added different panels and marble red corduroy.'
And, naturally, given its genesis, this is a collection with purpose: all profits go to a TRAID-funded project in Bangladesh which provides day care, food and education for 140 children of garment workers.
Monies will be also spent getting the tots birth certificates. This’ll make them official citizens, allowing them to get into schools and get medical treatment when they need it. If a bomber jacket can do that much, we're onto a good thing.
The collection will be available at the Traidremade pop-up store: 2 Berwick Street, London W1F 0DR from May 22 to June 13. Opening hours: 10am – 7pm daily. www.traidremade.com / @traidremade / #traidremade