I visited the Eco Chic showcase at the Scandanavia House in Manhattan to get a sense of what's happening with sustainable fashion in Europe and beyond. There wasn't a ton of menswear, but there were some gems, and below I'll share the highlights. My favorite piece in the show was an organic, Japanese denim suit that had a hand-feel very similar to wool. It's nice to find non-wool suits, now that we know that wool production is one of largest sources of greenhouse gas emissions (for example, New Zealand's 40 million sheep constitute 90% of the country's greenhouse gas emissions). Julian Red, a sustainable Swedish clothing line, harnesses ecological textiles and fair labor, turning them into universally attractive garments. Over 60% of their entire collection is organic.
Bergman's has the claim of being the first commercially available organic cotton in the world, beginning in 1986. With partners as big as Levi's, their have their fingers in many pies. Bergman's also developed the criteria for organic certification of cotton and textiles, which have been adopted globally. On a neighboring dress form was Zion, a street fashion label using organic cotton, fair labor, and water-based dyes free of heavy-metals. They also support a tree-planting initiative in Tanzania to reduce carbon.