Helsinki Fashion Week 2019
19th – 22nd of July 2019
in Helsinki, Finland
As some of the world’s most sustainable fashion brands took to the catwalk for the 5th consecutive year at Helsinki Fashion Week this summer, the sweltering heat which is so uncharacteristic of the far north, highlighted why exactly sustainability is so cool and so necessary right now.
The highly inclusive HFW SS’20 was proud to host every age, race, religion, and sexuality both on and off the runway in line with its philosophy of connection and collaboration. The Keynotes and TalkTalk panels covered everything from fashion, architecture, space, waste, and diplomacy, in an effort to foster and promote cross-industry and cross-demographic ideas exchange.
The inquisitive minds of Millennials and Generation-Z had the opportunity to address international industry experts and professionals directly over current and future concerns, and discuss the creative solutions humans are discovering to tackle the most pressing contemporary issues.
The HFW SS’19 event guest-list ranged from governmental organizations and NGOs; to established and
pioneering brands and publications. Speakers and representatives for the Ministry of Environment of Finland, the European Space Agency, Solar Foods, VTT Technical Research Institute and Fashion for Good, stood alongside names classically associated with fashion such as Harper’s Bazaar, Elle, GQ, Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, Highsnobiety, Financial Times, BBC, Dezeen, Conde Nast International, Forbes USA and Vogue China.
The collections showcased this year were especially unique as only non-animal based leathers were permitted on the runway – a bold and controversial decision shortly preceding London Fashion Week’s decision to ban fur last year.
A.BCH impressed with their simple but strong message and commercial take on sustainable fashion; Patrick McDowell remixed the traditional Finnish harbor backdrop by staging a drag performance aboard a firefighting boat; Unravelau showcased a very consistent and creative sustainable luxury line; Kata Szegedi amazed with her flawless cuts and a collection that could sell on any commercial platform.
The ‘Wahna Satama’ venue on the island district of Katajanokka integrated catwalk with materials laboratory of the future: the Bio-Playground. A kind of petting zoo for future materials, the Bio-Playground invited guests to touch and feel the fabrics that are shaping the future of fashion. The lab showed how microbes can use fabric waste as their nutrition; and how mycelium can be used as an alternative to animal-derived leather. Project by Stora Enso, Aalto University, and Metsä Group stood out by their importance in terms of cross-industry collaboration.
The explosive mix of innovators and future thinkers, from industries across the spectrum, proved once again how when we collaborate and let go of our prejudices and self-imposed boundaries, that we can easily and efficiently streamline the needed advances to navigate the waters of the future comfortably and stylishly.
We can’t wait to see what innovations and creations humankind will come up within the very near future to make Helsinki Fashion Week 2020 an event of true utopian sci-fi proportion.
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