The new creative director is well known for her eco-conscious fashion
We have plenty of good reasons to believe that under the helm of Gabriela Hearst, the house of Chloé is likely to add more sustainable practices to its agenda, which may be more compatible with the idea of “honest luxury”.
The new creative director confirmed it herself when expressing her gratitude for her recent designation at the French Maison – just a few days after Natacha Ramsay-Levi confirmed her adieu to Chloé. “I am excited for the opportunity to work under the leadership of Riccardo Bellini* and support him in his commitment to create a business that is socially conscious and in balance with our environment“, she specified on her IG.
Gabriela Hearst has made sustainability her trademark since 2015 when she launched her eponymous brand. Her Uruguayan origins have hugely influenced her vision on fashion in an extremely positive way, for she was born in a fazenda where employing the natural resources with parsimony is a well-established habit, allowing no waste, no water abuse nor pesticides.
There is a specific purpose behind each and every choice regarding the fabrics she uses and the production practices she adopts, all aimed at taking the least amount from the planet, with as little environmental impact as possible, in order to promote responsible and quality fashion. So much so that in her SS20 collection, partnering with EON, she introduced the Garment Journey, a QR code label that provides customers with more transparency by sharing the supply chain and giving them access to learning about their garments journey.
“The moment you put your name on the label, you can no longer hide behind it“, she explained when she set aside her first Haute bohemian brand Candela (launched in 2004) to entirely dedicate herself to Gabriela Hearst, a brand which has been rapidly recognized by the international fashion system for its sartorial and sophisticated minimalism, alongside its great green imprint. “The integrity and conscience of the product reflect you. The clothes represent what you believe in, so you have to set the bar very high“.
Throughout the years, she translated this into a way to make fashion that incorporates all the values she took from the ranch, e.g. the best merino wools, the best yarns, fabrics and leathers sourced directly on her family ranch. Not to mention that she has been supporting local communities, by working with a 600-women cooperative, Manos del Uruguay, who realizes her designs by hand, weaves or hand-knits the fabrics and hand-paints the leathers: after all, sustainability stands also in the safeguard of the ability to work with hands; the “hand interpretation”, which happily includes also that “human error”, as she calls it, that is evidence of natural intelligence.
Her efforts around eco-sustainability increase year by year: the Fashion Awards 2020 have elected her as the first fashion designer having conceived a completely carbon neutral fashion show; for Spring 2021, she offset the show’s carbon footprint with a donation to Madre de Dios, a Peruvian NGO which wants to protect the Amazon rain forest and monitor its endangered species, while creating new jobs in the area. Moreover, she continues to be a leader in the use of deadstock materials, ubiquitous in her collections, that she wants to increase up to 80 per cent and use no virgin material by 2021, as Vogue states.
While waiting for her first collection chez Chloé to be revealed in March 2021, all of the above considered good premises look hopeful for a further sustainable turn for the French fashion house.
(* It is here useful to remind that Riccardo Bellini has already proven his commitment to giving a positive contribution to the planet, society and community, while offering a meaningful and beautiful fashion product: Chloé signed the petition spearheaded by Dries Van Noten in May 2020 for a more sustainable fashion calendar, it shifted toward more “women-led social enterprises” and established an EP&L (environmental profit and loss account), setting a roadmap through 2025 to reduce its eco-impact; moreover, the brand is developing a B Corp certification for its social and environmental performance.)
Explore some of Gabriela Hearst’s best pieces she designed for her brand in the photo gallery and check out our database for further photos:
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