Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Vivienne Westwood - 'This is not Charity, This is Work'
I've spoken a little bit before about Vivienne Westwoods involvement in ethical fashion through her footwear collection but she recently also launched a range of bags that were made by hand in Kenya in conjunction with The Ethical Fashion programme.
The Ethical Fashion programe is one I support and admire whole heartedly. It helps women (over 7000 of them actually) who currently inhabit some of the worst poverty stricken areas imaginable to improve their lives by giving them a chance to learn a trade and gain work in the process. Its a campaign that bids to not only change their own lives but the lives of the whole community.
The three bags in the VW collection were made by recycling roadside ad signs and safari tents. They were crafted by hand by Kenyan women from often shunned parts of the African community including HIV/AIDS sufferers, single mothers and women living in the most extreme levels of poverty.
I applaud Westwoods involvement in such a worthwhile cause but as she puts it - 'It's not charity it's work' and she is so right. These women have learnt craft skills that they can continue to put to good use in starting their own businesses and improving their local community by passing on these skills to others.
The bags retail at £100 and are available from http://viviennewestwood.co.uk