Monday, March 5, 2018

Love it: the H&M Conscious Exclusive collection is back




Over the last couple of years it seems every brand wants to be attached to the term ‘conscious’ in some way, often exploiting the term for their own gain in the same way that many beauty companies employ the ‘greenwashing’ and ‘pinkwashing’ techniques. It fools waaay too many people for my liking, so when I talk to or hear about a brand that is really putting their money where their mouth is (like Tiffany and Girlfriend Collective, both of whom do an amazing job), it makes their actions that much more authentic.
Which brings me to H&M, and their newest Conscious Exclusive collection dropping around the world on April 19, 2018.
Since launching a few years ago, H&M Conscious Exclusive has demonstrated that you can make beautiful accessories from discarded candlesticks and dresses out of fishnets and other nylon waste, and this year’s offering tips its hat to the Arts and Crafts movement in Sweden. It features the new sustainable materials recycled silver and ECONYL®, a 100 per cent regenerated fibre. ECONYL® has been woven into a delicate sheer fabric with dramatic embroidery featured on the beautiful white lace wedding dress, or made into a romantic dark grey-blue lace long-sleeved mini-dress. Meanwhile, recycled silver appears in the delicate Arts and Crafts inspired jewellery designed to go with the collection. 
“The innovation behind sustainable materials never ceases to amaze,” says Ann-Sofie Johansson, creative advisor at H&M.  “Recycled silver is made from scrap metal with minimal environmental impact and ECONYL® is a 100 per cent regenerated nylon fibre from nylon waste that support clean oceans. The way the materials feature in our Conscious Exclusive collection shows how the latest technology can be incorporated with time-honoured techniques for spectacular results.”
The Conscious Exclusive 2018 collection takes inspiration from the creative home of 19th and early 20th-century Swedish artists Karin and Carl Larsson. The cottage Lilla Hyttnäs, with its beautiful paintings and tapestries, has been interpreted by the Conscious Exclusive design team into a contemporary and eye-catching collection of beautifully crafted womenswear, shoes and accessories made from sustainable materials. 
The 2018 print campaign was shot by fashion photographer Mikael Jansson and stars Aamito  Lagum, Giedrė Dukauskaitė and legendary super and activist, Christy Turlington-Burns, founder of the maternal health organisation Every Mother Counts. 
“I’ve learned so much about sustainable materials and how far we’ve come by being part of the H&M Conscious Exclusive campaign,” says the model. “The collection is really feminine and elegant.” I for one am obsessed by the two beautiful looks above, and cannot wait til they hit the stores... although the red dress featuring in their latest Studio Collection might lure me in sooner, it looks like the perfect pop of colour for my birthday in a few weeks' time.
But back to sustainability. On top all of this, H&M is one of the world’s biggest users of recycled polyester and one of the biggest buyers of organic cotton. The goal for cotton is that it is to be 100 per cent sustainably sourced by 2020. It is part of H&M’s ambition to make sustainable, good-quality fashion accessible to as many people as possible – as in fast fashion, done well!
The Conscious Exclusive 2018 collection will launch exclusively at H&M Sylvia Park, so start saving your pennies for this important drop.

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